Book Review: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

Last edited on March 10, 2022 by Sarah Pereira

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.

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is the eighth story in the Harry Potter series. It will be the first official Harry Potter story to be played on stage.

When initially released on July 31, 2016, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child got many mixed reviews. Some say it was a mess while others think the exact opposite. The theory that Rita Skeeter wrote this is my favorite. Personally, this book was a decent addition to the series but not necessary, despite the many plot holes. This review contains spoilers.


Format: Perhaps it was just me, but I liked that the format of the Cursed Child was a screenplay. The format was an unexpected yet, exciting change. Compared to some other screenplays I have read, in terms of format, this is quite high up. After reading this, I had even gone so far as to buy Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them and the Crimes of Grindelwald.

Transition: The transition between the seventh and eighth book was nicely written. The Cursed Child picked up write where the Deathly Hallows left off, to which I was very grateful about. Considering the years between seventh and eighth books in the series, it’s convenient for people who read the book closer to the Deathly Hallows release date.

Nostalgia: There isn’t much to say about the nostalgia this book brings. Quite frankly, this may be one of the biggest redeeming qualities of the book.

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Characters: The characters in this book were dull and forced. While I liked seeing the characters grown, the majority of them just acted awkward. Additionally, the epilogue of book seven featured Ron and Hermione’s two kids, Rose and Hugo. In the epilogue, Hugo is supposed to be at the Kings Cross Station, which never happened in the Cursed Child. In the Cursed Child, Hugo is not even mentioned or shown once. It wasn’t just Hugo though, an abundant of characters such as Hagrid, Teddy, Rose, James, Lily, and Neville were barely or not at all mentioned. For a screenplay of 300+ pages, you’d expect more characters.

Convenient Plot: It’s sad that Delphi, Scorpius and Albus could enter the Minister of Magic’s office with a simple Alohomora. There should’ve been more protection on the time turner if it was rare and the last of its kind. Taking this both into consideration, the convenient plot depleted the enjoyment of the screenplay.

Delphi (and her plot hole): I could honestly list many reasons why Delphi and her backstory don’t add up, but I won’t for the sake of time. In short, many readers, myself included, couldn’t quite imagine Voldemort having a kid with anyone, even Bellatrix. He was technically conceived by a love potion. That being said, Voldemort shouldn’t be able to have a kid but, who knows? I would have prefered that Delphi was the child of Bellatrix and Rodolphus Lestrange who happened to be constantly bullied at school, making her want to bring back Voldemort.

If you want to learn more about plot holes in Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, I highly recommend checking out this article from TheOdessyOnline.

Final Thoughts

The Cursed Child has many flaws, a mediocre storyline but features up-to-date writing. I’ve read better fanfictions to say the least. While the Cursed Child had the charm the originals series, the play was too ambitious with its goals and ultimately failed in being anything but good nostalgia.

About Author

Lover of all things books, cats, and art, Sarah is currently a student in high school. When she is not reading, Sarah is usually writing and can be found in libraries and bookstores. Sarah is always looking for new adventures to write about (her Hogwarts letter didn't come so she's waiting to turn 50 for her adventure to the middle earth).

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