Many of us thought that the age of Harry Potter was over after the final book Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows released in 2007 and the final movie premiered in 2011. And yet five years later, here we are waiting on the highly-anticipated Harry Potter and the Cursed Child to be published; with a new prequel/spinoff film, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, set to reach theaters later this year.
To be fair though, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is not like any of the Harry Potter books that came before it. While many of the characters we know and love from the original series do appear, the story (conceived by author J. K. Rowling, but written by playwright Jack Thorne) primarily focuses on the adventures of Harry's son Albus Severus Potter and Draco's son Scorpius Hyperion Malfoy. This brings us to the major difference between Cursed Child and the other books, which is that it's actually a script of the currently sold-out play at London's Palace Theatre and not a new prose story.
Despite all these differences between the old books and the new one that might disillusion fans, CNN is reporting that based on preorder sales, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child could be the best-selling book of 2016 for both Amazon and Barnes & Noble. The largest bookstore chain in the United States, Barnes & Noble, has even revealed that Cursed Child is already the company's most pre-ordered book since Deathly Hallows.
Not bad for a series that supposedly ended almost ten years ago. And these numbers don't include the thousands of fans that have preordered the book in one of the many other bookstores across the country. Just like the old days, many of these bookstores are also hosting midnight release parties where fans can go, dress up, play games and await the latest book. (Scholastic has created a website where you can enter your zip code to find a party near you.)
With a new Harry Potter themed area having opened in April at Universal Studios Hollywood, a new trilogy of Fantastic Beasts films on the horizon and a play already sold out through May 2017, it seems the hit franchise and universe isn't down and out yet. On the contrary, in many ways Harry Potter is more popular now than ever. The series has remained popular with fans who were there during all the books and movies, but it has also left a legacy to younger, new fans.
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child: The Official Script Book will hit shelves on July 31st, 2016.