JK Rowling is releasing a new children’s book free online.
The Ickabog is a brand new fantasy story, and has nothing to do with Harry Potter.
“Over 10 years ago, I wrote a stand-alone fairy tale called The Ickabog,” Rowling announced on Twitter. “I always meant to publish it, but after the last Potter was released I wrote two novels for adults and, after some dithering, decided to put those out next.
“Until very recently, the only people who’d heard the story of The Ickabog were my two younger children. Over time I came to think of The Ickabog as just for my family. The manuscript went up into the attic, where it remained until a few weeks ago.
Rowling added that over the past few weeks she has been rewriting and come to the decision to release The Ickabog online for free, “so children on lockdown, or even those back at school during these strange, unsettling times, can read it or have it read to them”.
“We’ll be publishing a chapter (or 2 or 3) every weekday, starting at 3.00pm today and ending on July 10th,” Rowling explained. “You don’t need to register to access the story. You can read it for free on a new website we’ll be launching shortly.”
Rowling added she intends to donate her author royalties from the published books “to projects and organisations helping the groups most impacted by Covid-19.”
UPDATE: The first two chapters are now live at the book’s official website.