In celebration of Harry Potter’s birthday today, the Children’s High Level Group (CHLG), the English charity co-founded by J K Rowling and Emma Nicholson MEP to help children suffering in institutions, announces that it is to publish The Tales of Beedle the Bard
Fans around the world have been clamouring to read the wizarding fairy tales – created, handwritten and illustrated by J K Rowling – since last December, when Amazon famously bid £1.95 million / $4 million for the charity copy, one of only seven in existence, at Sotheby’s in London.
The Children’s High Level Group will publish three editions of the book, all in the English language, to be printed and distributed by Bloomsbury, Scholastic and Amazon. The Bloomsbury and Scholastic editions (£6.99 / $12.99) will feature additional commentary on each fairy tale from Professor Dumbledore and an introduction by J K Rowling. Amazon will produce up to a maximum of 100,000 Collector’s Edition copies (£50 / $100), which will aim to closely replicate the look and feel of the original ‘Beedle’. All editions will go on sale on Thursday 4 December 2008.
All net proceeds from the sale of the books – expected to be in the region of £4 million / $8 million – will be donated to CHLG.
The charity works to make life better for vulnerable children across Europe, where over a million children and teenagers are growing up in unacceptable conditions in large residential institutions. In most cases they are without adequate human or emotional contact and stimulation, while many only just survive without life’s basics such as adequate shelter and food.
Emma Nicholson says: “We are so thrilled to be publishing such an exclusive and special book. This unique project will raise vital funds for the work of CHLG, to help us change the lives of hundreds of thousands of marginalised and institutionalised children who are living in appalling conditions, and make sure that no future generation suffers in this way.”
J K Rowling says: “There was understandable disappointment among Harry Potter fans when only one copy of The Tales of Beedle the Bard
was offered to the public last December. I am therefore delighted to announce that, thanks to the generous support of Bloomsbury, Scholastic and Amazon (who bought the handwritten copy at auction) – and with the blessing of the wonderful people who own the other six original books - The Tales of Beedle the Bard
will now be widely available to all Harry Potter fans. Royalties will be donated to the Children’s High Level Group, to benefit institutionalised children in desperate need of a voice. The new edition will include the Tales themselves, translated from the original runes by Hermione Granger, and with illustrations by me, but also notes by Professor Albus Dumbledore, which appear by generous permission of the Hogwarts Headmasters’ Archive.”
Containing clues that were to prove crucial to Harry Potter’s final mission to destroy Lord Voldemort’s Horcruxes, The Tales of Beedle the Bard
is the volume of five wizarding fairy tales left to Hermione Granger by Albus Dumbledore in the seventh and final book, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
. Only one – The Tale of the Three Brothers – is recounted in the book. In The Tales of Beedle the Bard
, the four remaining stories are revealed for the very first time.
CHLG campaigns for child rights across Europe, particularly in Eastern Europe where over a million children and teenagers are growing up in institutions, often in unacceptable conditions. In most cases they are without adequate human or emotional contact and stimulation, while many only just survive without life’s basics such as adequate shelter and food.
CHLG helps around a quarter of a million children each year through education activities; outreach work in institutions; and a dedicated telephone and email help line.
In 2007, J K Rowling produced seven individual copies of The Tales of Beedle the Bard
. Each was handwritten and illustrated on vellum, bound in brown morocco leather and mounted with different semi-precious stones. Six of the books were given by the author to those most closely connected to the Harry Potter books over the last 17 years; the seventh was given to CHLG and auctioned by the charity at Sotheby’s in London.
The Tales of Beedle the Bard
broke several records – auction record for a modern literary manuscript, auction record for a work by J K Rowling, and auction record for a children’s book – when it sold at Sotheby’s on 13 December 2007 for £1.95 million. The winning bid was submitted by Amazon.
The five tales in The Tales of Beedle the Bard
are: ‘The Fountain of Fair Fortune’, ‘The Warlock’s Hairy Heart’, ‘The Tale of the Three Brothers’, ‘The Wizard and the Hopping Pot’ and ‘Babbitty Rabbitty and her Cackling Stump’.
When Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
, the seventh and final of the Harry Potter books by J K Rowling, was published on 21 July 2007, it broke all sales records as the fastest-selling book ever. The Harry Potter books have sold over 400 million copies worldwide; they are distributed in over 200 territories and are translated into 65 different languages.
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For all publishing enquiries, please contact: Christopher Little Literary Agency: Romily Must on +44 (0) 20 7736 4455 or firstname.lastname@example.org