In this day of e-readers, trust J.K. Rowling to whip up frenzy over the release of her latest book in brick and mortar stores. Harry Potter and the Cursed Child , the eighth book in the series, is a rehearsal edition script of Jack Thorne’s play which had its world premiere in London on Saturday.

Based on a story by Rowling, Jack Thorne and John Tiffany , the play takes place 19 years after the battle of Hogwarts and focuses on Harry’s son Albus.

With the release of the script book scheduled for 11 a.m. on the boy wizard’s birthday, Sunday (July 31), Bengalureans made a beeline for bookstores in the city.

Waiting from 7 a.m.

“There were people waiting to buy the books from 7 a.m.,” said Mayi Gowda from Blossom Book House on Church Street. “They hung around till 11.30 a.m. when the books arrived and snapped them up.” Mr. Gowda said they had already sold 200 books. Make that 201, as Sridhar came to claim his copy, which he had pre-ordered.

Down the road, a huge standee of the book welcomes browsers at Bookworm. “There are about 50 people waiting to buy the book,” said Krishna at Bookworm. “We have sold 100 books already.”

Everywhere you turn, there is the Cursed Child, beckoning and Sapna Book House on Residency Road was no different. An innovative display with Harry Potter masks (Daniel Radcliffe is the face of Harry Potter whether you like it or not) and a teetering, tottering pile of books summons everyone to Potter-verse.

“We have sold about 40 books till now,” said Syed Sameer Masoom, a senior staff at the store. “We have been getting enquiries on phone, people have pre-ordered, they were waiting eagerly for the book this morning.”

And now that the book has finally reached, Potter-heads are busy devouring the book and the Rowling juggernaut rolls on impervious to changes in reading habits — this is a play and incidentally there is an e-book version online.

Mangaluru, incidentally, will meet Harry Potter only on Monday. “I’ve ordered 70 copies for Mangaluru,” said Chandrashekar from Crossword Bookstores at the India Book Distributors office on Cunningham Road. “They will go by road and reach the store in the morning.”

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