Muggles worldwide have rejoiced at the news of an eighth book to the ever popular Harry Potter series hitting the bookshops and internet this summer. This marks almost 10 years after the last book, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (2007), was published. Author J.K. Rowling announced on her Harry Potter-dedicated website Pottermore that the book Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Parts I & II would be published on the 31st of July and will simultaneously be available in print and online.
— Scholastic (@Scholastic) February 10, 2016
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child picks up right where the previous book left off at the much beloved Platform Nine and Three-Quarters, where a grown-up Harry and Ginny wave off their children as they head to Hogwarts. The scene is set 19 years after Harry fought he-who-must-not-be-named in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.
News of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, which is set to be published by Little, Brown Book Group, was met by mostly positive response online. But some people blasted the eighth book of the Harry Potter series on social media, saying it was an attempt to “cash in” and a “publicity stunt” ahead of J.K. Rowling’s latest book-to-movie release. Harry Potter and the Cursed Child will be released just months before Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them hits cinemas.
— MTV News (@MTVNews) February 10, 2016
Harry Potter die-hard fans may be left a little confused by Harry Potter and the Cursed Child as it is not a conventional novel as the rest of the series, but instead is the script to a play. The play is based on an original story by authors J.K. Rowling, Jack Thorne, and John Tiffany. The play will premiere on London’s West End on July 30, the night before the book’s release. According to J.K. Rowling’s website, the version of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child to be published in July 2016 will be a “Special Rehearsal Edition, comprising the text version of the script at the time of the play’s preview performances, prior to opening night.” The script is subject to change, and will only be available for a limited time. A Definitive Collector’s Edition of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child will be available at a later date.
The play was first announced in December of 2013 but excitement is really starting to build now with J.K. Rowling revealing more and more information on Pottermore. The latest teaser reveals more than ever before.
“It was always difficult being Harry Potter and it isn’t much easier now that he is an overworked employee of the Ministry of Magic, a husband and father of three school-age children. While Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son Albus must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted. As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes, darkness comes from unexpected places.”
Before creating Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, J.K. Rowling had refused countless offers and approaches to turn the Harry Potter series into a theatrical production, according to the BBC.
Despite writing other novels under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith, J.K. Rowling is unable to escape the demand for more Harry Potter and has multiple Harry Potter-inspired works being released in 2016 and 2017. As well as the Harry Potter and the Cursed Child play and script being released this year, a special version of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets beautifully illustrated by Jim Kay is set to be released. In 2017, four special editions of the first book will be released in the U.K., one for each of the four Hogwarts houses: Gryffindor, Hufflepuff, Ravenclaw, and Slytherin. And according to Pottermore, there will be a brand new edition of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. 2017 also marks the 20th anniversary of the first book Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone‘s publication.
The play is sure to draw a huge response and will star Jamie Parker as a grown-up Harry, Noma Dumezweni as Hermione Granger, and Paul Thornley as Ron Weasley.
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