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Last Updated: Thursday, 23 December, 2004, 12:58 GMT
New Harry Potter book: Your reaction
Author JK Rowling has said that the next Harry Potter novel, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince will be published on 16 July next year.

It follows Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix which was published in June 2003.

Ms Rowling had originally intended to announce details on Christmas Day but decided to release the information earlier.

She has already indicated that the sixth book will see one of the characters killed but has given no hints as to who is doomed.

Are you looking forward to the release of the new Harry Potter novel? What surprises do you anticipate from the next instalment in the series?

This debate is now closed. Read a selection of your comments below.

The following comments reflect the balance of opinion we have received so far:

I'm 63 and am eagerly anticipating the next book. Rowling has done a magnificent job and there is much, much more in the details of her stories than most realise. The books are wonderful for children and a challenge to adults to understand the hidden meanings of her writing.
Brian, Seattle, USA

A book that encourages so many people, especially young children, to take an interest in reading can never be a bad thing.
Ali, Crewe, UK

My son got me hooked on Harry Potter years ago. Now 12, he and I are anxiously awaiting number six.
Stacie, St. Louis, MO USA

This is definitely NOT a series just for kids
Steve Hollar, Lake Ellsinore, CA, USA

I'm 55-years-old and got hooked on Harry Potter after reading Rowling's biography. This is definitely NOT a series just for kids. Anxiously waiting for book six.
Steve Hollar, Lake Ellsinore, CA, USA

My friend and I are of the 'older' generation of HP addicts and had hoped to be taking our copies of the new book on holiday with us in August, however I think we may have to begin reading on 16 July to avoid hearing the storyline before we open the pages... looking forward to it immensely.
Trish, Fife, Scotland

The books were great - for my 9-year-old and yes I've read the first three with her. Adults reading this should also try the Janet and John books for a similar standard in the use of English. A great children's author - Yes. A children's classic - Yes. Leave it at that and get off the bandwagon.
KP, Birmingham, UK

I think Neville is the prince and I hope that the book is darker and funnier than the last ones!
Emma, Douglas, Isle of Man

I await the next HP book eagerly, as they seem to be getting better each time.
James, Würzburg, Germany

The lady certainly has a shrewd business mind
Richard Hawley, Essex, UK
I'll be ordering my copy at 33 years of age! And I can certainly see JK's reasoning for publishing globally on the same date. Maximum publicity and maximum sales. The lady certainly has a shrewd business mind.
Richard Hawley, Essex, UK

Almost everything of significance, that has happened in the first five novels, has been a completely unforeseeable surprise. I look forward to more delightful surprises.
MAJP, Toronto, Canada

Please, please, please! No more Harry Potter!!! No more media hype. No more HP 100% of the time. Give us all Harry Potter no-fans a break. JK Rowling is rich enough. Now please move on.
Mark, Alicante, Spain

I read the first Harry Potter book before it was even famous and have read each as they were published. Notwithstanding, I was very disappointed with the Order of the Phoenix. I hope the next book has a decent storyline and half as many pages.
Kevin Albertson, England

Wonder if the bookies will take bets yet?
Jonathan Garrett, Bristol
Great! I have just finished The Order of the Phoenix so it will still be nice and fresh in my head. It's impossible keeping up with the names in the books and sometimes the most obscure characters are the leads in the next book. Who will the Prince be?? Well my money is on Neville. Wonder if the bookies will take bets yet?
Jonathan Garrett, Bristol, UK

The fact that Rowling is going to "kill off" one of the characters disturbs me. The primary readership of the series is children. Killing off characters such as Voldemort, whom the readers were never intended to relate to would not really affect children, but having one of the main characters of whom Rowling has built up these kinds of histories and personalities may frighten the long-time younger fans a great deal.
Darryl LeCount, Paderborn, Germany

Perhaps Harry will become Born Again, and abandon use of magic in favour of tambourine shaking. More seriously, book six will need to be a return to form, as the last novel was quite disappointing and not up to previous high standards.
Jake, Ryde, UK

As a professional with a stressful life, I would like to thank Joanne Rowling for giving me such a wonderful place to escape to! I can't wait until July!
Minnie, Newcastle, UK

Harry Potter brings us all together
Jeffrey Lake, London, UK
I look forward to the long debates I'll have with my sisters (16 and 11) my parents, my cousins and my friends. Rarely do we all enjoy something in common, but Harry Potter brings us all together.
Jeffrey Lake, London, UK

It's just like Big Brother or Pop Idol. Every now and then the public go insane over something entirely ordinary. The next half a year will be loaded with publicity stunts of all kinds to promote the book, just like last time.
Gareth Rippingale, UK

While the books aren't exactly my cup of tea, I can't criticise anything that has had such an impact on children's literacy. It's just a shame that more books aren't greeted by such enthusiasm from the general public.
Bill, Leicester, UK

I just hope it's better than the last one. I love the HP books, but Order of the Phoenix was a huge anti-climax. My money's on Hagrid being killed off this time. And why so long between Rowling finishing the book and it being published?
Sam, Sheffield, UK

Definitely looking forward to the next instalment
Joseph, UK
Hmmm, could the early info release be a marketing ploy to boost Xmas sales of the previous books for folk to catch up on the story? Definitely looking forward to the next instalment but would prefer JKR to stay on the fluffy side and not kill off any of the goodies!
Joseph, UK

It's going to be a long wait but worth it... I wait with baited breath!
Daniel Howells, Plymouth, UK

I anticipate a media feeding frenzy for the next eight months and to find it impossible to go anywhere without being subjected to everyone's opinion on which character will be killed off.
Bill, UK

I don't want any more characters to die - I know she'll write it beautifully but I just can't see any character on the good side who is 'expendable'! Wish the release date was sooner but what can you do - at least the waiting has an end date now!
Lisa, London, UK

Rowling has proved time and time again that she is very talented and has a special gift. I'm sure her books will entertain children around the world for many years to come.
Adam, Indianapolis, USA


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