HARRY Potter author JK Rowling has hit out at websites which post plot details and spoilers of the latest book.
In an update on her official website, the city-based author said spoiler information leaked over the web would "diminish readers' pleasure in the book" and pleaded with fans to resist the temptation of looking for preview information about the novel.
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows is set to become the fastest-selling novel of all time when it is released on July 21 and millions of fans are already speculating about the plot.
It will be the final installment of the boy wizard's saga, although Ms Rowling hinted last week that she may be persuaded to write a companion encyclopedia of magic for charity in the future.
She said that she was determined to make sure readers did not have their enjoyment of the latest novel ruined by plot details being leaked over the internet.
And she praised fan websites for taking a stance against spoilers.
She said: "A couple of weeks ago, the Potter fansite The Leaky Cauldron posted an editorial on potential spoilers for Deathly Hallows. It made me laugh, but I was also incredibly moved and grateful.
"We're a little under three months away now and the first distant rumblings of the weirdness that usually precedes a Harry Potter publication can be heard. The Leaky Cauldron's early mission statement on spoilers (ie, don't, and we're not putting them up if you do) is deeply appreciated by yours truly.
"I add my own plea to Melissa's [Leaky Cauldron webmaster] for one reason and one only: I want the readers who have, in many instances, grown up with Harry, to embark on the last adventure they will share with him without knowing where they are going.
"Some, perhaps, will read this and take the view that spoilers are part of the hype and that I am trying to protect sales rather than my readership. However, spoilers won't stop people buying the book. All it will do is diminish their pleasure in the book."