The Casual Vacancy, by JK Rowling

The Casual Vacancy. JK Rowling. Book Review. 4 stars

The Casual Vacancy, JK Rowling's first book not set in the wizarding world, has gotten review ratings all over the map. Many reviewers are passionately disappointed that is is not a Harry Potter book.

Broken wand.

The major departure is not just the lack of magic, but the relative lack of optimism. This book has a fundamentally different view on human potential, and on bravery and heroism, that may leave fans of Harry Potter, a series primarily about the great effectiveness of these higher ideals, dejected. Rather, you've got a story that is horrifying in its depiction of mundane normalcy. It's about the human tendency to turn a blind eye rather than help a neighbor, and the hopelessness of change without that help.

But I tell you what: I thought it was quite good.


Alicia said:On Feb 06, 13 at 4:47pm

I went in to The Casual Vacancy pretending it was a book by an author I'd never read before, because really that's what it was since it was so different from Harry Potter. And with that in mind, I enjoyed it and I'd read another book by adult author JK Rowling. Is it as good as Harry Potter? Of course not, but who would have expected that? Now I want to go home and re-read Rowling's first seven books!

Katie Funk said:On Feb 07, 13 at 10:08pm

This is awesome, Audrey. I sometimes think we are leading parallel-ish reading lives... except I haven't been able to motivate myself to pick up The Casual Vacancy yet. I will reconsider now... :-)

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