J.K. Rowling | Image: The Brag
“Harry Potter” author JK Rowling is in a fresh row with transgender rights activists after her newly released novel, “Troubled Blood” features a cross-dressing serial killer.
“Troubled Blood” follows a private detective, Cormoran Strike, as he investigates a cisgender male serial killer who dons women’s clothing to kill female victims. The book released on Tuesday was written under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith as the fifth instalment of Rowling’s “Cormoran Strike” detective series.
A day before the book’s release, Rowling was ripped on social media with the hashtag #RIPJKRowling trending on Twitter.
A Twitter user, @memeforhire wrote: “in memory of jk rowling. she ain’t dead, but she killed her own career by proudly hating trans people & no one would really miss her that much anyway #ripjkrowling”
Others said the book is not transphobic and that critics are should read it before jumping to conclusions.
Observer journalist Nick Cohen wrote: “I’ve read the latest Strike novel, and the claim it’s anti-trans is total sh***. I can’t tell you why it is total sh*** without giving away the ending. So until you read it yourself, which you should, you will just have to trust me: this is total sh***.”
A Twitter user called Steve replied stating: “But when you combine it with all the negative stereotyping she’s done about trans women, it shows a clear pattern. It’s not anti-trans as such but it does play into the fears that trans women are cis males looking to spy on women.”
Cohen replied: “Read the bloody book why don’t you?”
Cover of “Troubled Blood” | Image: USA Today/Mulholland Books
Piers Morgan added: “The fact #RIPJKRowling is trending says all you need to know about the woke brigade – they’re nastier and more viciously intolerant than anyone they preach about.”
In a review of the novel, the Telegraph wrote: “The meat of the book is the investigation into a cold case: the disappearance of GP Margot Bamborough in 1974, thought to have been a victim of Dennis Creed, a transvestite serial killer.” The publication added: “One wonders what critics of Rowling’s stance on trans issues will make of a book whose moral seems to be: never trust a man in a dress.”
Last month, JK Rowling said that she would give back an award bestowed upon her by the Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights organization after one of its members criticised her views on gender issues. The Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights organisation presented Rowling with its Ripple of Hope award in December 2019.
Rowling sparked controversy in June for picking on the use of the phrase “people who menstruate” instead of women in an article on menstrual health.
Quoting a reference in the article to “people who menstruate”, she tweeted:
“I’m sure there used to be a word for those people. Someone help me out. Wumben? Wimpund? Woomud?”
It led to a string of denunciations, including from the actor Daniel Radcliffe, who played Potter in the blockbuster film franchise, and other actors who starred in the series.