has revealed that it has received more than a million pre-orders for the latest Harry Potter book.

Pre-release worldwide requests for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows topped the elusive one million mark after just 95 days, the online retailer revealed in a statement yesterday.

Hype surrounding the seventh installment in J K Rowling's popular tale of witchcraft and wizardry means that Potter fans appear to have fallen under the author's spell even more strongly than they did ahead of the release of her sixth book.

Amazon pre-orders for Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince did not reach the one million mark until 174 days after it was made available for request in 2006.

The latest Potter title has worked its magic in both the UK and the US, with British fans pre-ordering more than 250,000 copies through Amazon's website, while American readers have requested more than 620,000 copies.

Amazon has also conjured up a further price cut for the hardcover edition of the book in the US, although Potter fans elsewhere may feel disgruntled at being left out of the magic circle.

Meanwhile as retailers prepare for the official launch of the latest Potter novel on July 21st, controversy has arisen over the emergence of a poster promoting the next movie based on the magical series.

Earlier this month the Daily Mail reported that Potter fans had complained that an image of the young actress who plays Hermione Granger had been electronically enhanced to give her a bigger bust.

Warner Bros, the film company behind Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, told the paper that the image of Emma Watson was "not an official poster" and had been "accidentally" posted on a website for Imax 3D cinemas.

09/05/2007 08:04:05