Jorge Arantes, the ex-husband of author JK Rowling recently claimed that he helped write the first book in her multimillion-dollar “Harry Potter” franchise.
“When she was writing the book, I was participating in it, she was reading it out to me, and I was reading it to her,” Arantes, 54, said to the Daily Mail. “The first book was fascinating; the writing was wonderful, and I always liked it because we shared a passion for literature, and especially literature for children.”
The former Portuguese television reporter continued: “The project was for seven books, and I was very involved with the first one and she knows that. She started writing it when we were together.”
It has been noted that the pair met while Rowling was teaching English in Porto, on the northern coast of Portugal, and later tied the knot in 1992 following a whirlwind romance. The ill-fated lovers had one daughter before divorcing in 1993. The author was recently interviewed on “The Witch Trials of JK Rowling,” a new podcast that centers on her public controversies. There, she alleged that Arantes threatened to burn the pages of her unpublished manuscript if she decided to leave him. That’s when Rowling began photocopying the pages, she claimed, just in case he made good on his purported promise.
Arantes, who has admitted to slapping Rowling, told the Daily Mail that the claim was outrageous. “I don’t know why she is saying what she is now, maybe she is delirious from three years of COVID lockdown,” slammed Arantes. “I was surprised when I read about this. I deny it. It doesn’t make any sense. Why would I do something like that? Maybe you should ask her.”
Rowling further stated that she would smuggle “small batches” of what would become “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” out of the house, photocopy them at school and then leave the copies in a cupboard.
“And gradually in a cupboard in the staff room, bit by bit, a photocopied manuscript grew and grew and grew, because I suspected that, if I wasn’t [sic] able to get out with everything, he would burn it or take it or hold it hostage,” she recalled.
“That manuscript still meant so much to me. That was the thing that I prioritized for saving. The only thing I prioritized beyond that, obviously, was my daughter, but at that point she’s still inside me, so she’s as safe as can be in that situation.”