Muggles across the globe rejoiced yesterday when author J.K. Rowling announced that she would publish an eighth installment in the "Harry Potter" franchise, in the form of the script for "Harry Potter and the Cursed Child," the new play (and "Potter" sequel) hitting the London stage this summer. It should come as no surprise, then, that fans were so thrilled that they immediately ordered the book, sending the title to the top of several bestseller charts less than 24 hours later.

Retailers including Amazon, Amazon UK, Barnes & Noble, and UK chain Waterstones all list "Cursed Child" as their number one title more than five months before the book's release. The tome, featuring the rehearsal script for "Harry Potter and the Cursed Child - Parts I & II," is set to be released on July 31 (which also happens to be Harry's birthday), the day after the play debuts on London's West End.

The ambitious project came about thanks to a collaboration between Rowling, playwright Jack Thorne, and director John Tiffany, who announced the play last summer. According to the trio, the story was split into two parts "due to the epic nature of the story," and will closely follow Harry's youngest son, Albus Severus Potter, as he navigates his first year at Hogwarts and his father's looming legacy. The action picks up immediately after the events of the "Deathly Hallows" epilogue, 19 years after Voldemort's defeat.

With the publication of the script, "Potter" fans who haven't cosplayed since "Deathly Hallows" came out in 2007 now have the chance to relive those glory days of midnight release parties. And while physical bookstores are no doubt scrambling to set up such events, sadly, Rowling herself is not slated to make any appearances herself, according to her publisher, Little, Brown.

But the author heard fans loud and clear when the play was announced, and according to The Guardian, took great pains to make sure audiences the world over would be able to enjoy "The Cursed Child," regardless of geography.

"David Shelley, chief executive of Little, Brown, said on Wednesday that Rowling and her team had received many requests from fans who cannot see the play to publish it in book form," the paper reports.

"We are absolutely delighted to be able to make it available for them," Shelley told The Guardian.

We're delighted, too. Accio summer!

[via: The Guardian]

Photo credit: Pottermore

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