JK Rowling has urged fans not to buy a valuable piece of Harry Potter memorabilia that has been stolen from a house in Birmingham. The untitled prequel written on a postcard had been auctioned for charity in 2008.
The 800-word story, handwritten by Rowling, sold for £25,000 at a charity auction at Sotheby’s to raise funds for English PEN and Dyslexia Action. But the piece of A5 card was taken during a burglary on Howard Road, Kings Heath between the 13th and 24th April, along with some jewellery, the BBC reported.
JK Rowling has asked fans not to buy the manuscript if they’re offered it, tweeting on Friday morning that by bidding for it the owner had “supported writers' freedoms".
PLEASE DON'T BUY THIS IF YOU'RE OFFERED IT. Originally auctioned for @englishpen, the owner supported writers' freedoms by bidding for it. https://t.co/ljEQyyj9yY— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) May 12, 2017
The story is reportedly set three years before Harry Potter's birth and revolves around the young wizard's father, James Potter, and his godfather Sirius Black, as teenagers. The pair are confronted by two "muggle" policemen after a high-speed motorbike chase but manage to escape on broomsticks.
West Midlands police has called on Harry Potter fans to share its appeal for information on social media. The force is aiming to reach fans all over the world.
We are asking #HarryPotter fans to help share our appeal after a rare Harry Potter prequel by @jk_rowling was stolen https://t.co/NLH79kAoLf— West Midlands Police (@WMPolice) May 12, 2017
"The only people who will buy this unique piece are true Harry Potter fans," said investigating officer PC Paul Jauncey. "We are appealing to anyone who sees, or is offered this item for sale, to contact police."
Rowling's postcard was one of several works donated to the auction by authors, including Sebastian Faulks and Doris Lessing.
Anyone with information about the postcard's whereabouts or the burglary is being urged to get in touch with West Midlands police on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.