Bookish Event: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child (No Spoilers!)

hp15_q4_square_ls_pottermore

I was very lucky to have a friend buy tickets for herself and me to go and watch Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. These tickets were booked a year in advance and so it’s weird to think I’ve now seen it and the whole experience is over *sad face* As promised in the title, there will be no spoilers in this post about the play itself, I won’t even mention the plot, characters or post photos which give away anything to do with it. Instead, I wanted to blog about the experience and share a couple of photos of the things I bought (so there are photos of souvenirs, also viewable online in the shop, but fair warning if you don’t want to see that stuff either!) 

img_0842

Somehow, through a big dose of sheer luck (and a lot of avoidance of Tumblr and Twitter), I wasn’t spoiled at all with Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. Going into it, I knew very little besides the strapline, that it was set 19 years later and was about the next generation. I’d also glanced at the casting when it was announced but had mostly forgotten even that. I went to the launch of the Harry Potter and the Cursed Child screenplay (round up of the event here) and managed to be really disciplined about not flicking through the book or even reading the blurb (fangirl self-discipline ftw!) 

img_0902

The whole experience was beyond anything I could’ve imagined! I was gripping my poor friend’s hand the entire time and she mine and there were tears – won’t say if good or bad  😉 Before Part II my friend C and I met up with another Potterhead friend A, who was lucky enough to see it during the first few days of general release and we discussed our predictions for the second part. Suffice to say I was not at all prepared for the finale! During the intermission on the second night, I went a little overboard on the souvenir buying and my haul multiplied from the modest programme and magnet to the above. I ended up buying: a photo book of the making of the play, a programme, a tote bag, a t-shirt, a pencil, a postcard and magnet *sheepish*

I’m already trying to plan my next trip. I love the idea of experiencing something Harry Potter related for the first time – haven’t been many opportunities for this since Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows was published and so a play in the HP canon was beyond my, and I imagine many fans’, wildest dreams. I can’t wait for more people to watch the play so the fandom can start having discussions about the play and plot but until then I will most definitely be #keepingthesecret  🙂

Advertisements

Bookish Event: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Midnight Launch!!

It has been a very long hiatus lovely readers and for that I apologise! But to make up for it, I’m restarting this blog with the ultimate post – the midnight launch of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child! Warning – photos galore ahead!

I was lucky enough to snap up tickets to Waterstones Piccadilly’s midnight launch of the newest instalment in the Harry Potter saga and I managed to get back to the UK just in time to actually attend – cue much jetlag and deliriousness (apparently the ultimate way to Fangirl!) 

I went with four Potterheads friends and we got queueing outside before 10pm when the store was due to open. Whilst in line we got given gold envelopes that contained a gorgeous floor map, a bookmark, our book token, and our complimentary drinks vouchers. When we go inside my friends and I made a beeline for the quiz because one of my Potterhead friends is a self-confessed super fanatic and we wanted to give the quiz a shot…

Needless to say we won 😉 Although the question of which county Malfoy Manor is did stump us longer than it should’ve – we eventually guessed through a process of elimination and got full marks (14/14 right)! Our prize was a goody bag each of a gorgeous bottle of butterbeer, a puzzle, a HP chocolate lollipop and some choc coins! Btw that butter beer is never being drunk obv.

We then went on to do some of the other activities on offer which included face painting, cake decorating, photo booth, film props, sweet shop, wand shop and book shop – I think the sweet shop was easily my favourite and I confess I did go a little over the top with my haul 🙂 

Finally we began queueing for the book and the line looped all around the stairs and out of sight – it was so long. Whilst in the queue we created some gifs for Pottermore and got interviewed by some film crews! At midnight we shouted the countdown at the top of our lungs and sang happy birthday to Jo. 

When I finally got my hands on my book I couldn’t stop screaming!! I think I jumped up and down for about 10 mins straight outside Waterstones (I’m probably on some news footage somewhere…) To finally have it in my hands was an amazing feeling. However, I have vowed to not read it until I watch the play in October which might as well be 19 years later 😉 


Let’s just hope I don’t get spoiled in the meantime #keepthesecret

Did you go to a midnight launch? Or did you do anything with your friends to ring in the launch? What are your plans for reading Harry Potter and The Cursed Child? 

Shout about it in the comments below (and remember no spoilers about the book pretty please!)

Bookish Review: The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith

The Silkworm by Robert GalbraithThe Silkworm by Robert Galbraith

Published: June 2014 by Sphere

Genre: Crime, Mystery

Rating: ♄ ♄ ♄ ♄ ♡

Goodreads | Buy on Amazon

The Silkworm was one of 2014’s most anticipated releases. The book is the second installment in the Cormoran Strike series written by JK Rowling under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith. Having immensely enjoyed the first book, The Cuckoo’s Calling, I was looking forward to getting stuck into the sequel.

Cormoran Strike, fresh from his success solving the Lula Landry case in The Cuckoo’s Calling is roped into a missing person mystery when the wife of Owen Quine, a has-been author, turns up at Strike’s office asking him to find her husband. The now famous private investigator finds himself swept up in the world of literary intrigue as egotistical authors, decades-old rivalry, and domestic un-bliss take over the pages. It soon becomes clear that a manuscript the missing author was working on may hold the key to his disappearance…

The premise of The Silkworm was a nice departure from the celebrity and socialite world we were introduced to in The Cuckoo’s Calling. Instead, the reader is immersed in the publishing world, meeting characters that ranged from competitive authors, ruthless agents, tired editors and successful publishers – all of them intriguing and compelling. I really enjoyed the strong characters, both the literary ones as well as the usual smattering of mistresses and partners. The character roll-call was a little difficult to keep track of, but Galbraith helped us by narrowing down the list of suspects nicely. I also loved the rich descriptions of London – as a Londoner I enjoyed being able to picture the exact locations as I was personally familiar with many of them.

The Silkworm also gave us a much better insight into the lives and backgrounds of Strike and Robin which was a welcome breather every few chapters. Their personal dramas and their interactions with others away from work was done well and made the duo more relatable. I found the long-awaited meeting between Matthew, Robin’s fiance, and Strike really amusing (JKR recently tweeted that this was one of her favourite chapters to write!)

The ins-and-outs of the publishing world were really interesting to read about – especially knowing it’s JK Rowling writing under a pseudonym and that some of the things that happen in the book may reflect her own experiences. The actual manuscript, Bombyx Mori, (Latin for silkworm) which was the focus of the book was fascinating, if a little confusing. But I liked how it showed the immense number of people and amount of work involved in the development of a novel – from conception to release.

There were a couple of the things that stopped the book from achieving a solid five star rating from me. It took me a while to get into the book – truth be told, I began The Silkworm in June 2014 but abandoned it about 60 pages in. It is understandable that with a murder mystery, the characters/suspects must be established first but I think the “crime” which was a huge and gruesome hook came a little too far in. I also felt the “reveal” was a little delayed – Strike and Robin are aware of the culprit a few chapters before the reader yet when the reveal came, it was rushed and I found it a little anticlimactic.

Overall though, the plot kept me guessing “whodunnit” and the pacing through much of the middle of the book kept me turning the pages. This book seemed to set up some significant character development for Strike and Robin which I’m looking forward to exploring in the next installment, Career of Evil, due out in October this year.

Have you read any of the Coromoran Strike novels? Are you a die-hard Harry Potter fan and is that how you came across the Strike series? What did you think of The Silkworm? Sound off in the comments below 🙂