When I say that this wasn't as magical, I'm not referring to actual magic being performed in the story but about the feeling it gave the reader. The originals were delightful and enchanting while this was a much darker, melancholy feeling read. There were some interesting parallels between young Albus Severus and young Harry in their desire to right wrongs, in their loyalty to a friend, and in their discomfort with unearned fame. These parallels do neatly tie this to the original series but not in the way of a normal sequel. The exploration of the parent child relationship between Harry and Albus was, at times, difficult to read as Harry clearly floundered with this sensitive child. But if Harry as father isn't all the reader could have hoped, the portrayals of the other adults in the novel are hard too. They are underdeveloped and oftentimes nothing but buffoons, still stuck in their own immature school personas.
SPOILER (highlight the below chunk of white in order to read the spoiler)
But the biggest beef I had with the story revolves around two plot threads. First, I find it completely and totally unbelievably out of character to posit the idea that Voldemort would ever have been close enough, even just physically, to anyone to have sired a child. Although Bellatrix would have been the logical witch upon which to get his spawn, he didn't like or trust anyone enough to be that close to him when he would be vulnerable. His character just wasn't drawn that way. Secondly, I don't love alternate histories and so the idea of continually jumping back and forth in time was not all that appealing to me. And the final jump back to Godric's Hollow felt like just one more time for Harry to make things right, to honor sacrifice, and then to make his own for the good of the Wizarding World. But we already knew all this about Harry's character and this felt like a redux, like an unnecessary addition.
I didn't necessarily want more of Harry Potter but if we were going to go back to that world, and what a world it was, I would have liked the same magical, not melancholy, feel and a stronger connection to the ethos of the other books. Over all it was fine. It was adequate. But it didn't rise to the level of special I would have liked. If you haven't already, read it yourself and let me know what you think. And if you've been lucky enough to see it, let me know if the translation to the stage imbues it with some of what I think is missing on the page.