Excitment grows for launch of new Harry Potter book

The stage play of  Harry Potter And The Cursed Child. Picture: PA

The stage play of Harry Potter And The Cursed Child. Picture: PA

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It was in the heart of the Capital that she penned the first book about an orphaned wizard with a sinister past.

Inspired partly by Old Town landmarks, JK Rowling created a world of curses and flying cars that captured the imagination of muggles everywhere.

And 20 years later Harry Potter fever is set to take hold once more with tomorrow’s midnight release of the eagerly awaited eighth book in the best-selling saga: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child – Parts I and II.

With more than 1000 copies of the book pre-ordered at Waterstones on Princes Street, staff are expecting the Boy Who Lived to work his magic yet again.

Events manager Euan Tait said: “These launches have been massive in the past, and this is an exciting opportunity to be part of the magic of the Harry Potter phenomenon.

“People in Edinburgh can be among the first in the country to get their hands on the script-book.

“With the play being almost exclusively shown in London, this means that fans here can also be a part of the story.”

It is understood that many fans of the films and books will turn up in costume, queueing outside the store.

The two-part play is already the most popular pre-ordered book in the US for nearly a decade, while its performance at London’s Palace Theatre has won five-star reviews.

Because of the city’s strong connection to JK Rowling, who lives in Barnton, Waterstones has held some of the biggest launch parties outside London to celebrate the publication of previous Harry Potter books.

Hundreds queued at midnight to be amongst the first to get a copy of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince in 2005 and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows in 2007.

At the bookshop’s 2003 launch party for Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, JK Rowling appeared in person at midnight to the surprise of the guests – a group of excited ten-year-old pupils from Preston Street Primary School.

Harry Potter fans in Edinburgh will also be able to attend a Hogwarts-themed event at Blackwell’s on South Bridge.

Keen readers in fancy dress will compete for prizes for the best dressed, enjoy taste treats replicated by Blackwell’s house elves and take part in a Potter-themed quiz.

Richard Duffy, who helps run The Potter Trail through the city, revealed the tours had seen a huge surge in crowds ahead of the book’s publication.

He added: “We were running five tours a week this time last year. Now we’re running nine tours a week and we’re still getting similar numbers on all the tours.”

Based on an original story by JK Rowling, the play is set 19 years after the events of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Harry Potter is now a Ministry of Magic employee and father of three.