Book Review – Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

So obviously I’m a massive Potter-head. (And then I’m talking about the books. I don’t care much for the films. But the books, oh man…) I mean, me and Harry, we grew up together! I remember the books being totally new, no one at school had heard about Harry. I was about 10 years old when I got introduced into the World of Witchcraft and Wizardry. And from that year onwards, every summer, me and my family had a fight about who got to read the new book first. Mom, dad, brother, me. As I grew older, Harry and his friends grew older and his adventures went from exploring his newly found magic to and playing quidditch to defeating Voldemort once and for all.

I’ve read all the books at least 15 times. I’m not exaggerating. I really have. I even got a Harry Potter-themed birthday party after reading the first book. My mom was Professor McGonnagal and my dad professor Snape, and my brother Pieves. My friends all got an invitation for Hogwarts and we spend the whole evening doing magic tricks and brewing potions out of all sorts of brightly coloured soft drinks. Best. Birthday. Party. Ever.

So naturally, this new “book” has been on my mind. I wasn’t sure whether or not to read it. I mean, it’s not really a book. Seeing the play would’ve been better maybe, but who’s got money for that shizzle, right? I’d heard some mixed things from friends about reading the script. From “fun read” to “it’s just not what you want it to be”. So when I finally did give in and started the first page of the script, I tried to read with no expectations. And after finishing the book, all I can say is I have mixed feelings.

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First of all, let’s not forget, it is just a theatre script, not a book. And that means that what I liked most about the books, the magical world it creates and makes you become a part of, it just wasn’t gonna happen. The set directions gave only very basic info as to the location (which still, in theatre terms, seemed pretty complicated to make happen on stage), and your memories as a Potter-head would fill in the gaps. (That way it was quite smartly written, revisiting a lot of old locations and stories.) But because it lacked all of the detail that created this wonderful new world, and our familiar characters had changed so much and new characters were introduced, there just wasn’t enough backstory. You know, the fun-in-the-Hogwarts-hallways scenes, the quidditch games, potions class, Christmas dinners,… Far from crucial to the story, but unmissable in the Potter-world.

At the same time, the story was a fun read. Already quite early on, you were shot into the level of suspense we are used to when reaching the final part of each book. What starts out as a little adventure goes more and more wrong, plot twist here and there, more suspense, turn-the-page-how-is-this-going-to-end. Perfectly readable in just one cozy couch session.

On the one hand, it scratched my Potter itch by reconciling me with my old friends. On the other, it left me wanting more. More Hogwarts. More adventure. More silly Weasleys and smart Grangers and loyal Potters. I think more than anything, this script has shown that us fans aren’t tired of Potter just yet. And we are willing to give anything a shot if it means we get to revisit the good ol’ days of Witchcraft and Wizardry.

Another Wintery Memory, all the way down south

So I kinda only did a post like this yesterday, but my desktop scored again! This morning, it was South Africa. I don’t exactly remember how many years it’s been… But it was winter in the Drakesberg region. The nights were so cold, but during the day it was a wonderful 25degrees. And this, this was the view from our cottage in the morning. No hippos or crocs around, but definitely one of the most gorgeous lakeside views I’ve ever had. A wintery memory just like yesterday, but what a difference!

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Wintery Memories

Today I bring you another Happy Desktop Photo. This morning my computer surprised me with a photo from Finland! Around 5 years ago now, I went on Erasmus exchange in Helsinki. And what better way to spend my spring holiday in March than to go up to Lapland?

It was a week of husky sleigh riding, sledging down every hill I could find, an attempt to ice fishing (we gave up because it took us too long to drill a hole through the ice), sauna with a dip in the lake after, making a thousand snow angels, playing with the pet reindeer, and some cross-country skiing for rookies. My goodness what a week it was!

Yes, Finland is definitely another place I want to go back to!

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Happy Memory, Happy Desktop

A while ago I talked about one of the little tricks to make work more fun: my desktop pictures! Today I have another picture worth sharing with you.

This one was taken on the rim of the Wilpena Pound in Australia’s Flinders Ranges. We left early in the morning to beat the heat, and scrambled our way up the rim. This is one of the views from along that scramble. Once at the top, a much more smooth path gradually took us back through the centre of the pound and through the pass on the other side. We hardly passed anyone, and we were amazed by the different views all around. This hike is definitely in my hiking top 10!

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Memories: the Amazing Weekend of Exactly Two Years Ago

You know how facebook likes to give you these little memories , right? Like, what you were doing this time two years ago? Well, for me, apparently, this time two years ago I published a post on my very first blog, about my adventure in Australia. Since I have been low on inspiration lately, I feel like it deserves a reblog!
Enjoy!

Jolijn's Australia

This is going to be a long post so brace yourselves. I won’t bore you this time with facts about the work, because it was mostly the same as last week. But the weekend, wow, it was brilliant. Australia has definitely won my heart by now!

So Thursday evening I decided to go to Albany for the weekend. However, newly made friends told me Albany isn’t very interesting. But myreliable companion Lonely Planet (the tourist guide every backpacker just has to have) pointed out plenty of things to see around town. Saturday morning I left with another backpacker from Narrogin to Albany, with a bunch of tips on what to see and do thanks too good old facebook. And guess what? I was driving! And it went well! We stopped in Mount Barker, where the lady at the tourist office told us to go to Porunjorup. So we took…

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