Publisher Little, Brown and Company announced Monday that J.K. Rowling will publish a second novel under the pseudonym, Robert Galbraith. “The Silkworm” is the sequel to 2013’s “The Cuckoo’s Calling” and is slated for a June 2014 release.
An official in the law firm that represents Rowling spilled the beans last July by telling an acquaintance the author’s true identity. The acquaintance then tweeted the information. The firm was subsequently fined $1,645 for violating client confidentiality rules. The firm also apologized to Rowling and paid for damages caused by the leak.
“The Silkworm” continues the adventures of private investigator Carmoran Strike. The official synopsis reveals that Strike is called in to investigate the disappearance of novelist Owen Quine, and soon discovers the writer’s finished manuscript that contains poisonous pen portraits of almost everyone he knows. Quine turns up dead, and the story becomes a quest against time and an effort to understand the killer’s motives.
It’s unclear why Rowling will continue to write under the Galbraith pen name.
Considering the whole world knows her true identity by now, wouldn’t it be better to just write all future novels under the name that’s made her a respected contributor to the literary world?
In a perfect world, perhaps.
With the cat out of the bag, will the “leak” about Rowling being the real author behind “The Cuckoo’s Calling” and “The Silkworm” hurt the books’ sales?
Of course not!
Today’s publishing industry is a cutthroat business that will do almost anything to boost sales.
With millions of titles vying for spots on bookstores’ shelves, would it surprise anyone that the law firm’s “slip up” was nothing more than a publicity stunt?
The paltry $1,645 fine is a bargain in comparison to the marketing money Little, Brown and Company would normally spend to promote the book’s sales.
The return on investment for these Rowling-penned books has to be astronomical.
No matter what the truth of the matter is, one thing’s for certain: Rowling’s about to add millions more to her bank account.