Rowling starts Harry Potter At Home for housebound families

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FILE – This Nov. 13, 2018 file photo shows author J.K. Rowling poses for photographers upon arrival at the premiere of the film ‘Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald’, in London. Rowling has made a substantial donation for research into the treatment of multiple sclerosis at a center named after her late mother. The 15.3 million-pound ($18.8 million) donation announced Thursday, Sept. 12, 2019, will be used for new facilities at a research center based at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland. The author’s mother suffered from the disease and died at the age of 45. (Photo by Joel C Ryan/Invision/AP, File)

NEW YORK (AP) — J.K. Rowling is hoping a dash of Harry Potter will help families confined to their homes during the coronavirus pandemic.

The author has launched an online initiative, www.harrypotterathome.com, which features quizzes, games and other activities. For the month of April, Rowling also has partnered with the audio publisher-distributor Audible and the library e-book supplier OverDrive for free audio and digital editions of the first Potter book, “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone.” (The U.S. edition is called “Harry Potter’s and the Sorcerer’s Stone”).

Rowling’s British and American print publishers, Bloomsbury and Scholastic, will contribute materials to the Potter web site and to their own web sites.

“The teachers, parents and carers working to keep children’s lives as normal and happy as possible while we’re all on lockdown deserve a bit of magic,” Rowling said in a statement Wednesday. “I hope these initiatives will give children and even adults a happy distraction during their enforced stay-at-home time.”

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