It was a Sunday when the internet went into a frenzy and people ran into bookshops to get a copy of this new release by J.K.Rowling. It was an exciting time of the year. It was possibly the most exciting sunday for a Potterhead in years. Harry’s scar had not pained him in twenty two years and twenty two years ( in the wizarding world) we waited. It’s funny how things have changed for me. From being the awkward 13 year old standing in line to get a copy to waiting for my pre-booked copy to arrive from Amazon. The anticipation however was the same and I got hold of it on Tuesday afternoon ( two days late ) but still worth the wait. 50 pages in and I completely eased into the play format. The hearing of familiar names and characters and familiar phrases like “Boomslang skin and Lacewing flies” immediately rings a bell and it’s oddly comforting. One thing J.K Rowling does so well is not be predictable.. AT ALL. The story started where it stopped back in 2007 but immediately took a different turn and pace of its own.
The fast pace of the play is actually quite fun and refreshing and it made it that much harder to put down the book. Albus Severus, is presented as a character so different from anything I could have imagined. He’s actually not fond of Hogwarts or his father. Nor does he have any of his father’s greatness. This storyline reminds me of Snape, his own time at Hogwarts and him being a Slytherin it all fits in even better. His bravery and greatness is massively clouded by other people’s opinion of him. He is best friends with Scorpious, Malfoy’s son who becomes his friend as both feel like misfits at Hogwarts.
As the story continues, things get stranger and the whole plot is shaken when they first decide to meddle with time. I love the idea of it, I always have ever since Prisoner of Azkaban but the severity of Hermione’s lines, “Awful things happen to wizards who meddle with time, Harry” only take importance now when Albus and Scorpious get up to no good. Although they had a very good intention to begin with, things start getting trickier and their bravery is tested every time they go back in time and more so, when they return back to the present. It surprised me, shocked me and had me on my toes by the time I finished Part One. I knew Part Two was going to get much, much darker and I jumped right into it. The precise moment when my heart stopped beating for quite a few seconds was the mention of “Snape” being a Hogwarts Professor again. All I could think was, “Well Played, JKR! You are going to give us Snape again and take him away ruthlessly..again”. We do have to move on from him eventually but not without him being a hero one more time. It was exciting though and bone chilling.
Then we move onto the most interesting and final act of the book– Act Four. There’s a lot of symbolism involved here. One wrong move could not only destroy a wizarding world of peace and order but could also wipe out the existence of the entire Harry Potter series as we know it. By the time we’re here, We finally start to see the “Dumbledore” personality bits in Albus. He lives up to his name. There’s one last adventure where the whole gang is involved and more (Draco)! Wands are used and spells are shouted until the normal order is restored.We also experience a few deaths over the course of the book, in accurate JK Rowling fashion. It doesn’t occur to me even once that they’re in their forties. It’s almost like being back in the time when they were students again. I don’t know if this is the last we will hear of Potter. This is probably goodbye, and it was a bloody,good one at that.
I know a little part of me(and everyone else reading with me) always wondered if this book would live up to the greatness of the Harry Potter series. It did come close. Thank Dumbledore, for that!