The Harry Potter chair, as the chair in which J K Rowling sat to write her first two books of the series has been termed, has sold at auction for an astonishing £278,000. The auction happened in New York last week, and the chair itself has been scrawled on by Rowling (as well as being accompanied by a provenance letter written by Rowling). The seller, from Manchester, plans to give 10% of the sale money to the children’s charity Lumos – Rowling’s charity.
Meg Rosoff, the author of How I Live Now, a YA wartime (World War Three scenario) novel, has won the Astrid Lindgren memorial award. This Swedish prize gives the winning author £430,000 – the largest prize money in the world for children’s literature – and Rosoff will accept the award in May.
The Prestigious PEN/Faulkner Award was won last week by James Hannaham for the novel Delicious Foods, about a drug addict forced into slavery on a farm
Carnegie Library, in Lambeth, south London, has been in the news this week after authors flocked to save it following closures by the local council. The proposed closure of this community library inspired authors such as Nick Hornby, Stella Duffy and Neil Gaiman to show support in an official letter endorsing occupiers at the library who wish to keep the institution open. This council decision has come at a time of increasing worry over budget cuts and austerity measures targeting the arts and educational establishments, particularly those in already deprived neighbourhoods.
— Katherine Rundell (@kdbrundell) April 9, 2016
James Baldwin’s novel Giovanni’s Room has been voted the book with the best erotic passage in literature. The vote, created by LitHub, was taken by other authors, such as Roxane Gay and Candace Bushnell, who chose from books ranging over the past two centuries.
Film-maker, actress, writer: Lena Dunham is now going to launch her own publishing imprint with Random House, titled Lenny. It will release its first title in 2017, dedicated to feminism, style, politics and other topics in both fiction and non-fiction.
Following the recent controversy among people in the US over the state of North Carolina’s anti-LGBT legislation, authors have joined protestors in outcry over the hateful, discriminatory law. Authors include American and non-American writers, from Daniel Handler, Patrick Ness and John Green to Jacqueline Wilson, Veronica Roth and more. The authors will refuse to participate in literary events in the state, but will continue to visit schools and libraries.
A rare edition of a Shakespeare First Folio (from 1623) has emerged after owners of a stately home on the Isle of Bute discovered it in the estate’s holdings. The Folio will go on display at Mount Stuart House until this October.