J.K. Rowling’s new book, “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child,” is expected to debut at No. 1 on both the New York Times Bestseller List and the USA Today Bestseller List next week.

The story of “Cursed Child” picks up where “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows” left off. It’s a final installment in the Harry Potter series and the first since Rowling turned 50. “Cursed Child” will be released in hardcover on July 18, with a three-month exclusive promotional deal with Orbit in the U.S. The paperback will be available on August 16.

Thematically, ‘Cursed Child’ Heals Over Fifty Years of Divisiveness

Rowling has said that in writing the “Deathly Hallows” books, she was venting her own pent-up feelings about the civil rights movement and the Vietnam War, among other things. With “Cursed Child,” she seems to be taking a step back from social issues and focusing on family.

Thematically, the new book heeds the call of J.K. Rowling’s U.N. “For anyone wishing to understand my views on families in today’s world, here they are,” she tweeted. The tweet included an image of a family, which is the theme of the book’s cover: three generations of women surrounding a quill in the shape of a swan. (The photo is one of Rowling and her sons, Robert and Brian, holding the quill.)

“Cursed Child” offers an optimistic vision of modern families. The women on the cover of the book are not hiding their hair under caps or wearing black outfits or wizard robes; they’re wearing beautiful dresses, holding hands, and staring confidently into the camera.

“We’re not living in a perfect world yet, but neither are we as bad as some people would have us believe,” Rowling said at a publishing conference in June, when asked about the more socially conscious moments in “Cursed Child.” “So I wrote the book we need now, rather than the one we want.”

The feminist blogger and author Roxane Gay called “Cursed Child” a “triumphant return to form for J.K. Rowling,” noting that it was her previous book, “The Casual Vacancy,” that “brought her career to a grinding halt.” “The loss of Harry Potter left a gaping hole in my life, just as it did in the lives of countless fans, and I cannot wait to welcome the author back with open arms,” Gay wrote in a blog post.

‘Cursed Child’ Marks a Break From Rowling’s Previous Books

While still retaining the qualities that made her memorable as a writer, Rowling has deliberately set “Cursed Child” apart from her previous books, said Laura Schaefer, the author of several books on J.K. Rowling and her work.

“I think the most interesting thing about ‘Cursed Child’ is that it marks a break between the previous seven novels and her upcoming projects,” Schaefer told The New York Times in an interview. “She’s deliberately decided not to go down this route. She’s not interested in being the socially aware author who deals with issues of gender equality and racism.”

Indeed, the Twitterverse spent much of June 18 celebrating Rowling’s 50th birthday, with many users sharing the #IMYW hashtag, which stands for “I’m Still Waiting,” a sentiment that Rowling’s fans share. In the past, Rowling’s books have drawn criticisms for their portrayal of women and minorities, particularly in the case of “Fantastic Mr. Ford,” which was accused of being racist and sexist despite its Victorian setting and Mr. Ford’s quirky charm.

But critics should celebrate the fact that Rowling is writing what she wants to write, rather than what she’s perceived to write, said Brian Truitt, the author of “J.K. Rowling: A Life.” “She’s finally found a voice that resonates with her audience, and that’s the most important thing. “

What Will Be The Next Step For J.K. Rowling?

Rowling has said that after she finished “Cursed Child,” she didn’t know what came next. She said at the conference that she had planned to take a long break from writing and to spend more time with her family. But as soon as she got into the swing of writing again, she found herself with “three books’ worth of material.”

So what will be the next step for Rowling? Theories about what comes next include a sequel to “Cursed Child,” a spinoff about an abusive father named “Father of the Year,” and a Harry Potter prequel set in the 1920s.

But nothing is certain yet. Rowling has said that she will not rush into new projects but will take her time to find the right story that will inspire her next installment. What would YOU like to see J.K. Rowling write next? Let us know in the comments below!