My birthday was last week and one of the gifts I received was Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. After all these years I was quite surprised by how excited I was for it, so I started wondering what it is about Potter that still draws me to it.
For the record, I haven’t started reading Cursed Child yet. It’s next on my list but until that, let’s keep everything spoiler-free!
I haven’t done anything Potter-related in years. I haven’t re-read the books or re-watched the movies, and I lost my account info for Pottermore two weeks after it launched.
When I heard of the new play and the new film franchise, they didn’t really cause a reaction. But when Cursed Child was turned into a book, I suddenly found myself growing curious. By the time of its launch, I was intrigued.
It seemed weird at first, and I couldn’t be sure whether I really wanted to read it or whether I was simply following the Potter-fans who were gushing about it. Then I looked back at my history with Potter and realized they’ve actually had a big impact on my life and it started to make sense.
My first experience with Harry Potter didn’t even involve books. One of my relatives was a big fan of the books and when Philosopher’s Stone DVD came out, I received it as a gift. And I loved it. I loved Hogwarts, the magic, the flying brooms, the characters — everything.
The next experience was when I went to see Chamber of Secrets in the movies, and despite nearly having a heart-attack over the spiders, I loved it too. That’s what finally sparked enough interest in me to start reading the books, although I did skip right on to Prisoner of Azkaban.
I never even realized how much depth and action I was missing with the movies, so reading was like diving into a whole new world of Potter. Goblet of Fire pushed the world into a slightly darker direction but it was wonderful to follow Harry, Hermione and Ron through the changes.
My first very own Potter book was Order of the Phoenix and I think that’s why it still holds a special place in my heart. I read it over and over again, and sometimes when I couldn’t sleep I simply opened it to a random page and read until I fell asleep.
Half-blood Prince was the first Potter book I read in English and I continued the trend to Deathly Hallows (I also have them both in Finnish, just to fill the bookshelf). A friend of mine read them at the same time with me, and we had a little competition. Or at least I always tried to get just a little bit further than her. Mostly I failed, but that’s besides the point. My vocabulary wasn’t the biggest back then (still isn’t!) so reading was both entertaining and educating.
Harry Potter was also the reason I ran into fanfiction. I never wrote any Potter fics but it encouraged me to write other stories. Without it I doubt I’d be the writer I am today.
Looking back, Potter has given me a lot. I’ve laughed and cried with the characters, sometimes yelled at them but mostly cheered them on. When the final book was out, there was certainly a hole left behind but over time I forgot all about it. I moved on to other fandoms, other books, other characters.
Until Cursed Child.
I don’t read plays and don’t even like to see them, but this time I’m making an exception. Here’s hoping it’ll live up to my expectations.
After this long ramble, I’d love to hear about your Potter-memories!
How did you get into the series? Did you read the books as they came out or all at once later? Are you excited about Cursed Child and/or the upcoming movie, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, even though it doesn’t involve Harry and the gang?