Book Review: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by J.K. Rowling, John Tiffany, & Jack Thorne


It's not easy being Harry Potter's son, at least not for Albus, who doesn't fit the mold everyone was expecting him to. But it's not easy being Harry Potter either, nor is it easy being a father. When dark magic may be lurking once again, friends, family, and old enemies will have to figure out how to unite and work together.

*Note: This post was written in 2017 before I knew about JK Rowling's trans-exclusionary views and the harm her tweets, articles, etc. are bringing to trans people, their safety, and their rights. I no longer support or promote Rowling, but I'm leaving this post up because it's a series that still means a lot to many people who have already read it. Leaving it up also gives me a chance to say all this and spread more awareness to anyone who may not know. If you don't know what I'm referring to, I encourage you to do some research about Rowling's views and listen to trans people about why her views are so harmful. The links I provided might be good starting points. I also encourage you to find diverse works by diverse authors and perhaps support and promote those instead!*

Book Review: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by J.K. Rowling, John Tiffany, & Jack Thorne | reading, paranormal/urban fantasy, reviews
Title: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
Pages: 352
My Rating: 3 Stars
More Info: Goodreads, Amazon, Publisher


I was originally not interested in this story, but then I reread the Harry Potter series again and couldn’t resist giving it a try. I feel like I don’t have as extreme an opinion about this as many people do though.

I love the idea of Harry’s son and Draco’s son being best friends (or maybe even something more, if you ship them, as I do). I even like the idea of Harry and Draco getting over some of their animosity toward each other, of Harry’s son not being what everyone expected, and of the father-son issues between Harry and Albus and between Draco and Scorpius.

However, As much as I liked the ideas of all the things above, I don’t think they were executed well. Everything was so dramatic and mushy. It was basically just, “Look at how wonderful and caring and misunderstood Snape and Draco actually are!” and heart-to-heart moments between Harry and Draco, and a bunch of unrealistic, forced conversations about friendship and father-son issues. No 11-year-old immediately tells another 11-year-old they’ve just met that they have father-son issues. Is this just how plays are? Since there isn’t information about emotions, the characters just speak all their innermost thoughts and feeling and struggles, even when it’s not believable to do so? Also, everything Scorpius said sounded like a Tumblr post (e.g. “Oh my, that’s her. Wow. Squeak. My geekness is a-quivering.” <– that’s an actual quote), which was funny but, again, not believable. So yeah, the dialogue was unrealistic, and the characters from the original series seemed out-of-character sometimes.

Also, the time travel aspect didn’t work for me. It seemed like it had a lot of plot holes and logic flaws, as time travel usually does in stories. The story itself had some issues too. Like, how did Albus and Scorpius manage to get to the blanket that was wrapped around baby Harry, in order to put the potion stuff on it to send the message to older Harry, without Lily or James noticing them?

Then there was the whole, well, twist, let’s call it. Honestly, I don’t really feel much either way about *SPOILER* Voldermort having a child. It was obvious who the mother would be since she was the one Death Eater always fawning over him more than any other, and I wonder if Rowling had this in mind the entire time since, in Deathly Hallows, there was this: “My Lord . . . my Lord . . .” // It was Bellatrix’s voice, and she spoke as if to a lover.” But how was the child raised by Death Eaters? Wouldn’t they all have been put in prison after the battle? *END SPOILER*

I can tell you what I do have strong feelings about though: Scorpius and Rose. Why is that even a thing? She was such a jerk to him.

Anyway, I’m not really sure what to think about this overall. It was good to see some nice Slytherins for once, the friendship was sweet, and it was fun being back in the Harry Potter world, but this play did not reach its potential for me. Maybe actually seeing it how it’s meant to be seen would’ve made it more enjoyable? I don’t know, but if Rowling were ever to rewrite this as an actual book (which I don’t imagine she will, but a girl can dream), I’d give it a try.


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Have you read Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by J.K. Rowling, John Tiffany, & Jack Thorne?
Have you ever, or would you want to, read a story about a previous protag's children?
If you've read this, do you have any more thoughts on this play?
*If you haven't read this yet, watch out for SPOILERS in the comments!*


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44 thoughts on “Book Review: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by J.K. Rowling, John Tiffany, & Jack Thorne

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  1. verushka

    I don’t know what to make of this book. I’m half afraid if I read it, I might think of the normal HP differently, and I really don’t want to! So, I”m conflicted to say the least!

  2. Aj @ Read All The Things!

    I’m one of those people who have an extreme opinion. I kind of hated this play. I’m sure it’s great on stage, but reading it was . . . no. I agree that it was overly dramatic, mushy, and full of plot holes. I did like Albus and Scorpius, though. Great review!

    1. Kristen Burns

      I wonder if maybe the plot holes and mushy dialogue would’ve been less noticeable in play form, but yeah, reading it? Really noticeable. But yep, Albus and Scorpius were great! Thanks 🙂

  3. Michelle @ Pink Polka Dot Books

    I LOVED that the Slytherin’s got a Potter!!! And Scorpious was AMAZING. But this book totally felt like fanfiction. Hermoine and Ron and Draco— who even were they in this book??? because they weren’t the people from the 7 other books I read. The time-travel thing was FULL of holes. I was super confused about when they were at the Tri-Wizard Tournament and ended up in 1981?? And Delphi got away from them but it never explained how. Albus was cool at first but at some point he needed to stop whining about his dad. Like they’re about to die and he’s like— hey, you think my dad still hates me??? Ummm, how about you figure out what the hell is going on right now and LIVE and then think about your damn dad?

    1. Kristen Burns

      Right?! I loved the Slytherin twist. And I adored Scorpius. But now that you’ve said it, I totally agree. It *was* like fanfiction. The characters were off, and lots of plot things weren’t explained. Lol yeah, when you’re in mortal danger is not the time to worry about your relationship with your dad.

  4. Jessica

    I haven’t read the Harry Potter series. I thought I would never read them, but I broke my promise and someday I will get around to reading them.

  5. Greg

    I’ve only read the first Potter book- am I a heathen?- but I still like seeing reviews like this. Harry Potter has a son? Ooh who’s his wife? But anyway this must be a time jump then huh (if not… hmmm lol). Oh I see now- okay he’s grown up then. Shoulda read the snyopss. And I do know enough to know that Harry and Draco maybe sorta getting along is a big deal, right??

    Anyway nice review. Sounds like maybe it is a play thing? Maybe it works better that way? Still the dialogue…

    Scorpius… I like?? that name!

    1. Lindsi



      You don’t even know who Harry would be married to, so I’m going to cry in a corner now, Greg. I’m not judging… *whispers, “a lot”* Lol! Really though… I’m still surprised at the number of people who haven’t read the books. Have you seen the movies? They’re pretty accurate and so fun to watch! If you haven’t, stock up on some popcorn and binge-watch all 8!

      1. Greg

        Right? Blasphemous. I’m thinking Harry shoulda married Hermione? No offense to Ronnie’s sis. But I haven’t seen the movies either except for the first one. Still, popcorn and a binge sound pretty good! If I can tear myself from Netflix that is…

        1. Kristen Burns

          Honestly it is kind of surprising you haven’t at least watched the movies since I feel like it’s something you might like, at least based on what I’ve seen of your taste in books and whatnot.

      2. Kristen Burns

        Gosh Lindsi, you can’t just come onto my blog and call people heathens! Just messing with you ;-P It is surprising every time I find out someone hasn’t read or seen the HP stuff since it’s one of those you just kind of assume everyone has!

    2. Kristen Burns

      I love how this whole comment is basically just you having no clue about HP ? This is a play that takes place after the series when Harry’s younger son starts at Hogwarts. His wife is Ron’s sister. And Harry and Draco were enemies at school, so yes, them getting along is a big deal lol.

      It might work better in play form, maybe the dialogue wouldn’t be so obviously bad? Idk. This was a bit of a mess.

      It is a cool name!

      1. Greg

        So my bullshitting through that comment did NOT fly huh? lol although yeah I’m clueless. He married Ron’s sister? Why not Hermione?? And I’ve seen enough debate around the blogosphere to know THAT’S a loaded question! And you know me, I don’t let the fact that I haven’t read it keep me from commenting lolol.

        1. Lindsi

          Netflix is a cruel master… but you should totally escape for 5 movies! It’s doable!

          Why didn’t Harry marry Hermione? BECAUSE SHE HAS A SOUL MATE AND IT’S BEAUTIFUL. I think you should read the books to figure out the intricacies of the relationships, because it’s hard for the movies to include all of that.

          I’m so happy you’re a Harry Potter virgin! You get to experience everything for the first time! Ahhh!!

              1. Greg

                Yeah 5 is enough! Although I’ve heard they get better as they move along? And Linds are you saying Herm and Ron are SOULMATES? Wow see I would think Harrmione would be the thing. Is that their ship name BTW or have I mangled it horribly?

          1. Kristen Burns

            Tbh I’ve always felt very meh about the two main pairings. Remus and Sirius, all the way! They’re the only good ship in the series, and they’re not even technically canon lol.

        2. Kristen Burns

          You know, I can’t tell if you’re kidding or not about the Harry-Hermione thing lol. Ron and Hermione are the ones who end up together. And ha, nope, you never do let that stop you!

          1. Greg

            I’m actually pretty serious only because when I see Harry and Hermione (and I’m talking the actors here) they look like they work? I can’t really see Herm and Ron. Is that bad? But wasn’t there someone else Harry had a thing with? Can’t think of the name…

            1. Kristen Burns

              I guess if you’re basing it on what the actors look like, anything makes sense, haha. He had a thing with Cho Chang for a bit that didn’t really go anywhere.

  6. Lindsi

    I’m glad I read this book, but it didn’t change my life like the Harry Potter books did. I think fans wanted and epilogue, so they got one. It just didn’t have the same feel, you know? That magical, fantastical, tingling vibe that I get from reading Harry Potter (which I’m reading again, but out loud to my son).

    Do You Dog-ear?

    1. Kristen Burns

      Nah, this was definitely not a life-changer. Honestly it was probably, more than anything, just a money-maker. But aww, I hope your son is loving the books!

  7. Olivia Roach

    I have to admit that I could only read parts of this review to avoid spoilers. But yeah, I have heard mixed things about this book. It sounds like it had some good elements to it, but they just weren’t written well enough or developed well enough for them to be convincing or immersing like you would appreciate in a Harry Potter read! I am glad you gave it a go though 🙂

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  8. Litha Nelle

    I kind of want to read it, but I also want to do a Harry Potter re-read first. We’ll see if that happens.
    I used to read a lot of HP fanfiction, and my favorite was always making Hermione and Harry a couple- I never felt that she and Ron had anything together.
    Thanks for the review, Kristen!
    ~Litha Nelle

    1. Kristen Burns

      Yeah, I read this after doing a reread. The only HP fanfic I’ve read was a couple short things about Remus and Sirius. I feel very meh toward both the Harry-Ginny and Ron-Hermione pairings, tbh. Thanks for visiting!

  9. Ashley in Wonderland

    Great review! I really need to finish reading this. I lost interest halfway through and never ended up going back to it. Part of me just wants to finish it because its Harry Potter but I’m so conflicted about the narrative. I think it might need to be ‘seen’ to be properly enjoyed like you suggested. It’s definitely a strange addition to the HP universe!

    1. Kristen Burns

      Thanks! Yeah, I think seeing it might be better, but honestly, I still don’t think I’d have loved it? It is a bit of a strange addition to the series!

  10. Daniela Ark

    I haven’t read this one because I don’t think I’ll like the format and dramatic and mushy??? LOL NOOOOO pleeeease LOL my son is 11 and yup so are absolute right, He would never have that kinda conversation LOL

  11. Becky @ A Fool's Ingenuity

    I did not enjoy the play because it was so OTT. I did think that maybe it would have been better if I’d seen it, I think maybe OTT-ness would have been lessened on stage in some way. I felt like it read like fanfiction. I think I’ve seen some of these plots in fanfiction many a time. I totally shipped Scorpius and Snape and they had plenty of moments in this but that wasn’t enough to redeem the play as a whole.

    1. Kristen Burns

      Yes, exactly, the OTT-ness might’ve been less noticeable or more fitting on stage. But it did read like fanfic. I’m assuming you meant Scorpius and Albus? But yeah, I agree, their cute moments were fun but not enough to redeem the play.

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