The week in J.K. Rowling: The lasting power of Harry Potter
J.K. Rowling still doesn’t do many interviews, but she does have a very active Twitter account. Here at EW we try to keep up with all of the iconic author’s delightful doings, from Harry Potter tidbits to fun fan interactions. This is the Week in J.K. Rowling.
Castles of words
Amid all the hubbub surrounding “Magic in North America” and the upcoming Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them movie, the original Harry Potter books still retain a powerful magic all their own. At the recent U.K. event Letters Live, actress Ellie Bamber read a letter that a mother named Chrissy Hart had written to Rowling. Hart thanked the author for the way Harry Potterhelped her family through her daughter’s fatal cancer, writing, “Your words built a castle for her to move into when the prognosis got worse. Mrs Rowling, cancer threatened to take everything from my daughter, and your books turned out to be the fortress we so desperately needed to hide in.”
Rowling responded on Tuesday, saying that words were often her safe space as well.
Chrissy Hart’s letter wasn’t the only evidence this week of Harry Potter’s continuing impact. Nielsen Book statistics show that the women raised on Rowling’s books are now fueling the entire publishing industry. These readers have not only boosted the sales of YA series like Divergent and The Hunger Games, but also the new boom in psychological thrillers like Gone Girl and The Girl on the Train (sometimes referred to by the new term “grip lit,” for how thrilling they can be). They’ve even helped the spike in adult coloring books. Unsurprisingly, one of the most successful adult coloring books has been the Harry Potter iteration.
Fantastic Beasts is coming
Harry Potter‘s impact remains strong, and the franchise isn’t done yet. The first Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them movie awaits on the horizon. It’s due out this November, but Rowling tweeted on Friday that she was already seeing the first cut of the film (she also wrote the screenplay). When one fan expressed their excitement for both Fantastic Beasts and Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Rowling reminded them that there’s even more Harry Potter goodness to come in the near future, in the form of two Fantastic Beasts sequels.