Rowling in court against Harry Potter lexicon

Other News Materials 15 April 2008 00:12 (UTC +04:00)

Harry Potter author JK Rowling was in a Manhattan court Monday asking a judge to block publication of a Harry Potter lexicon that she called a betrayal of her bestselling series. ( dpa )

Rowling, 42, said the Harry Potter Lexicon, by Steven Vander Ark, represented "wholesale theft" of her work and that the legal battle had drained her creativity, forcing her to stop work on a new Harry Potter encyclopedia, media reports said.

She told the court that her project would include material that didn't make it in to the seven volume series and that the proceeds were due to go to charity.

Her disparaging comments Monday that Vander Ark's book project was a "betrayal" were in sharp contrast to the glowing references she made to his lexicon Website. Rowling has previously referred to it as a "great site" that she used in her own research.

But now, her plans to publish an encyclopedia conflict with the lexicon project.

Lawyers for the lexicon's publisher RDR claim that the 400-page- work is a legal reference guide.

Rowling insisted that it was little more than a second rate knock-off.

"Mr Vander Ark has gutted that book," Rowling, who wrote seven Harry Potter novels, told a New York court. "He has simply taken it and copied it. It is sloppy, lazy and it takes my work wholesale."

"He's taken my creation. I feel an act of betrayal," said Rowling, who added that the possibility that parents would buy Vander Ark's book for their children was "a travesty."

Rowling brought the lawsuit against Vander Ark's publisher last year as she published her seventh and final book in the series that has sold more than 400 million copies and spawned a 4.5-billion- dollar movie franchise.