When a fan asked whether anyone would die, the Harry Potter author said: "Yes. Sorry."

By Yolie Prebble
Updated October 08, 2004 09:30 AM
Credit: Mark Stewart/Camera Press/Retna

Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling is dealing a death blow to one of the characters in her next installment of the blockbuster series about the teen wizard, she admits.

Responding to a question posed by a fan on her official Web site Friday – “Are you going to kill off any more characters?” – Rowling, 39, offered a succinct reply: “Yes. Sorry.”

The sixth book about the amazing Harry, to be called Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, will be published next year, leaving fans with an agonizing wait before learning which character meets his or her doom.

However, readers can be assured that it will not be Harry. While answering questions at the Edinburgh Book Festival in August, Rowling told fans her hero “will survive to book seven.”

Not that he’s immortal. Tantalizingly holding out the prospect of Harry’s end someday, Rowling said: “I am not going to say whether he grows any older than that.”

The mega-successful writer, whose net worth is said to exceed that of Queen Elizabeth’s, is increasingly using her JKRowling Web site as her direct communication with fans. In her own words, she said it is “where I can give hints and clues as to what’s going to happen to Harry Potter next.”

Rowling had also used her site to announce the forthcoming birth of her third child, due next year.