Jo Rowling was born in Chipping Sodbury in the UK in 1965. Her name is Joanne “Jo” Rowling but her pen name is J. K. Rowling: before publishing her first book, the publisher Bloomsbury requested that the writer use two initials, so not to make evident she was a woman. She chose K. for Kathleen as the second initial of her pseudonym, from her paternal grandmother. The funny name of her birthplace (luogo di nascita) may have contributed to her talent for collecting odd (strani) names. During her childhood, two of her friends were a brother and sister whose surname was Potter. The elderly headmaster (preside) of her school, Alfred Dunn,inspired the Harry Potter’s character Albus Dumbledore. J. K. Rowling always loved writing more than anything. Her first story, when she was five or six, was about a rabbit called Rabbit. At the University of Exeter, in Devon, she studied French: her parents hoped that by studying languages, she would enjoy a great career as a bilingual secretary. At 26 she went to Portugal to teach English, which she really enjoyed. She wrote her second novel about a boy who was a wizard (mago). While there, she married Portuguese television journalist Jorge Arantes on 16 October 1992 and they had one child, Jessica Isabel (1993) who was named after Jessica Mitford, her first favourite writer. They separated in November 1993 and their divorce became final on 26 June 1995. When she returned to the UK, Jo had a suitcase (valigia) full of stories about Harry Potter. She reached (raggiunse) her sister in Edinburgh with her young daughter. Unemployed (senza lavoro) and living on state benefits (sussidio di disoccupazione), Rowling completed her first novel in numerous cafés. Then she explained that taking her baby out for a walk around, was the way to make her child fall asleep (far addormentare), and as soon as she was asleep, she would go into the nearest café and write. Rowling contributes substantially to charities (società di volontariato) that combat poverty and social inequality. She also gives to organizations that aid children, one parent families, and multiple sclerosis research from which her mother died in 1990. On 26 December 2001, Rowling married Neil Michael Murray an anesthetists. The couple has now a son and a daughter. Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone was finished in 1995. All seven volumes of the Harry Potter series, one for each of Harry’s school years, have broken sales records and have been translated into 65 languages. The titles of the Harry Potter books are Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (1997; Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone in the United States); Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (1998); Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban(1999); Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2000); Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (2003); Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (2005); Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (2007); Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them and Quidditch Through the Ages (two supplementary books both written in 2001). In 2012 J. K. Rowling published an adult book, The Casual Vacancy about life in a village in the countryside and the themes are class, politics and social issues like that of drugs, prostitution and rape (violenza sessuale). In 2013 the author write her first detective story The Cuckoo’s Calling, published under the pseudonym “Robert Galbraith”.