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Publishers announce sale of 5th Harry Potter book in Russian

MOSCOW. July 14 (Interfax) - The Russian version of the fifth book about Harry Potter, titled Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, will be offered for sale on February 7, 2004. Natalya Dolgova, spokesman for Rosmen publishing house, which holds the copyright for the Russian version of the series, told this to Interfax on Monday.

"A team of translators consisting of Viktor Golyshev, Vladimir Babkov and Leonid Motylyov have already started working with the text. The cover design of the Russian version has already been finished," she said.

The cover of the fifth Potter book differs on different sides of the Atlantic: in Britain, the book was released with a yellow-brownish cover with the Phoenix depicted on it, while the U.S. version has a blue cover showing Harry Potter.

"In Russia, the book will have the American cover depicting the 15- year-old boy holding a magic wand, with burning candles rotating around him. The cover design for the fifth Harry Potter book was created by Mary GrandPre, who illustrated the four previous books as well," Dolgova said.

The Russian version of the book could possibly be divided into two volumes, and the price for the book has not yet been set. "But it will be significantly higher than the price for the previous book," she said.

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix was released in Britain on June 21, 2003, and became the fastest-selling book in the history of the British publishing industry.

Readers were waiting for the new novel by J. K. Rowling for nearly three years, as the previous one, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, was released on July 8, 2000. The fifth book in the series is a third longer than the forth one, consisting of 38 chapters, 225,000 words, and 766 pages.

Literary critics and Western readers take the view that the new adventures of the young wizard are more dramatic, and the narration has assumed a dark, gothic tone.

The number of Harry Potter books published around the world is currently estimated at about 190 million.

J. K. Rowling earlier announced that she was going to write two more Harry Potter books.

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