A mother of a young cancer victim has thanked JK Rowling in a poignant letter for providing comfort and escapism for her daughter during her treatment.
The letter, which was read out by actress Ellie Bamber on Saturday evening at Letters Live event in London, was written by Chrissy Hart, whose daughter passed away last week.
Hart wrote the letter to the author last month, describing how the Harry Potter series had provided comfort to her "beautiful daughter" after she was diagnosed with cancer.
"Your words built a castle for her to move into when the prognosis got worse," she wrote.
"Mrs Rowling, cancer threatened to take everything from my daughter, and your books turned out to be the fortress we so desperately needed to hide in."
Mrs Hart added "the most important lesson you have taught us" was "for every child that is taken too early, people will come together, huddling close in a big group, wands held high to light the dark sky with the love they felt".
The letter concludes: "You built Hogwarts as a home for her to return to. And for me."
Chrissy Hart's Letter In Full
I write to you as a mother, a Mummy, of a beautiful little girl. I'm sure you hear people tell you all the time that your words, your imagination helped them, or their children, in some way. Maybe they were helped out of depression by your works, maybe they drew strength from the knowledge that Neville grew up to be a hero against all odds, maybe you taught a bookish boy that there are friends to be found between the pages of a novel.
I want to share with you what you taught my daughter, who was recently diagnosed with cancer. When I read her your stories, she didn't take to the clear distinction between good and evil, but instead loved the grey characters. You taught her that for every chemo she has to go through, there will be the opportunity to fly across a lake on a hippogriff. For every time her heart seizes with fear of pain, there will be me chasing it away with a patronus charm.
Your words built a castle for her to move into when the prognosis got worse.
Mrs Rowling, cancer threatened to take everything from my daughter, and your books turned out to be the fortress we so desperately needed to hide in.
And the things you taught me?
You made me realise that a mother's courage might come in the form of her tears. I might not have the physical ability to block her from what will take her away from me, but I can be loving and gentle like Molly, stoic in my affection like Minerva, protective and loyal like Hermione, and waiting to welcome her home like Lily.
But the most important lesson you have taught us both: cancer may take her away from me in just a few short weeks. I might not be able to spare her the pain. But for every child that is taken too early, people will come together, huddling close in a big group, wands held high to light the dark sky with the love they felt.
You built Hogwarts as a home for her to return to. And for me.
For that I shall remain forever gratefully yours,
Author Julia Donaldson, Sanjeev Bhaskar and former X Factor presenter Caroline Flack also performed at the matinee event at the Freemasons' Hall in London.
Letters by Roald Dahl to a girl who was not enjoying school, actress Elizabeth Taylor to her missing cat and American president Barack Obama to the daughter of a gay couple were read to the packed audience.
The event is based on the collection of letters published in Shaun Usher's international best-seller Letters Of Note.
The 2016 series will run until Tuesday and feature dozens of other famous performers, including Benedict Cumberbatch, Olivia Colman and Carey Mulligan.
Letters Live first launched last year and quickly became a sell-out success.
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