Author J.K. Rowling. (Photo : Reuters )
J.K. Rowling's new book will be far from the fantasy land of Hogwarts and witchcraft.
The woman who has become one of the richest authors in the world is taking her career in a new direction.
Rowling sat down with USA Today in her only American interview to discuss her latest book, "The Casual Vacancy," about families living in the fictional town of Pagford, including the impoverished Weedon family, centered around the out-of-control Krystal who cares for her younger brother while the drug-addicted family matriarch struggles with personal demons.
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Rowling said she's focusing on "human responsibility" and tackling issues such as poverty and its related issues and problems. Rowling once lived on government assistance before making it big with her Potter series.
"In some sense, the whole plot can be summed up with 'What do we do about Krystal?' and by extension, 'What do we do about all those people who are in a poverty trap?' But for Krystal, it's more than that, isn't it?" Rowling told USA Today. "Krystal is dealing with addiction in her family, she's dealing with decades of increasing poverty in her family with everything that means, and she's also caught in the crossfire of a local battle because this beautiful West Country town of Pagford is furious that it has jurisdiction over and responsibility for what we call a council estate (low-income public housing)."
She said the book's themes do translate across national borders and appeal to everyone of all backgrounds.
"...whether you think we should all be entirely self-reliant and people sink or swim, or you think we should be extending a helping hand and whether that should come from government and so on. And these are very contemporary themes in a lot of countries, particularly in the financial mess in which we find ourselves," she said.
While she enjoyed the fame and success garnered from her epic Harry Potter novels, Rowling wanted to keep the release of this book low-key and have a 'normal book publication." She said some of the hoopla surrounding Harry Potter just "wasn't fun."
With that said, don't expect anything else from Rowling for young adults anytime soon.
"No. Nothing nothing, nothing," she exclaimed. "And it would be challenging because of what I did with Harry. I have no plans to go there at the moment but never say never. If I had an amazing idea I probably would do it."
The book will be released Sept. 27.