In Brief

Harry Potter comeback rumour sparked by JK Rowling tweet

Author tweets anagram about her next project sending fans into a frenzy – but what did it say?

A cryptic tweet from author JK Rowling sparked a flurry of speculation that she was planning a return to the world of Harry Potter, although hopes that the wizard himself was set to make a return were later dashed.

The tweet that generated all the fuss, and was soon deciphered, read: "Cry, foe! Run amok! Fa awry! My wand won't tolerate this nonsense".

Cry, foe! Run amok! Fa awry! My wand won't tolerate this nonsense.

 

— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) October 6, 2014

A number of Rowling's followers rightly guessed that the enigmatic message was an anagram, with one early solution to the puzzle generating particular excitement: "Harry Returns! Won't say any details now! A week off! No comment."

As the tweet spread, and fans piled in with suggestions of their own, Rowling helped guide the discussions, offering hints to people who were getting close to solving the puzzle. She said one fan was getting "much warmer" with the guess "Newt Scamander's History of New York Fauna: One town, my tale".

Later she sent a more pointed tweet with the hashtag "#helpfulhint" that read: "The solution is the first sentence of a synopsis of Newt's story. It isn't part of the script, but sets the scene."

#helpfulhint The solution is the first sentence of a synopsis of Newt's story. It isn't part of the script, but sets the scene.

 

— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) October 7, 2014

Eventually Rowling showed her hand, revealing that the anagram referred to a new film focusing on the fictional 'magizoologist' Newt Scamander, who appears in the Harry Potter books. The film will be set in New York, 70 years before the events of the original Potter series. The final revelation came as something of an anticlimax, the Daily Telegraph said, "dashing fans' hopes that Potter would return".

The follower who finally solved the anagram was Emily Strong – a PhD student at the University of Sheffield - who describes herself as a "professional nerd and science geek" and a lover of "all things Potter". Strong tweeted the solution at the Harry Potter author on Tuesday afternoon: "Newt Scamander only meant to stay in New York for a few hours."

@jk_rowling Newt Scamander only meant to stay in New York for a few hours... #anagram

 

— Emily Strong (@EmyBemy2) October 7, 2014

Rowling wrote back within two minutes confirming that the solution was correct, thanking fans for their interest and noting that a number of the guesses were "spookily close to the script".

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