When Barry Fairbrother dies in his early forties, the town of Pagford is left in shock.
is, seemingly, an English idyll, with a cobbled market square and an
ancient abbey, but what lies behind the pretty façade is a town at war.
at war with poor, teenagers at war with their parents, wives at war
with their husbands, teachers at war with their pupils...Pagford is not
what it first seems.
And the empty seat left by Barry on the
parish council soon becomes the catalyst for the biggest war the town
has yet seen. Who will triumph in an election fraught with passion,
duplicity and unexpected revelations?
While I have been curious about Rowling's new book, the plot didn't seem that engaging to me. So, I have been wavering about reading it. I have loved her writing in the past, and have read the Harry Potter series several times, but I was a little dubious about her first book written for adults. After reading my friend Megan's review on it, my mind was made up. Megan has been an English teacher and is an avid reader. I trust and value her opinions on books, and have determined that this doesn't sound like a book I need to read. Her review follows. I hope it helps gives insight into her Rowling's book!
Guest Review by Megan
Rowling's latest novel is a compelling story of the downfalls of class
distinction, small-town pettiness, troubled marriages, troubled teens,
and the effects of abuse and poverty. It is raw and painful; an insight
into the struggles of people with no meaning in their lives beyond what
is here and now. J.K. Rowling is an amazing author, but I was so
disappointed that her first 'adult' novel was so full of gratuitous
smut. Harry Potter went through life at Hogwarts never once having to
relieve himself or take a bath, but in this novel we get descriptions of
every sort of nastiness out there. The main characters were supposed
to be the adults, but Rowling's teens are the driving force in this
novel, as well as the source of most of the vulgarity and disgusting
behavior. Why is it that today's authors seem to feel the need to add
vulgarity and smut to their work in order to be read? The Casual
Vacancy covers nearly all of humanity's ills in lurid detail. I can
fully understand drug abuse, pornography, teen sexuality, child abuse,
infidelity, and pedophilia without being dragged into the back bedroom
to witness it. The last third of the book told the same story without
all of the x-rated descriptions that were shockingly present in the
early pages. I won't allow my girls to read it, and my brand-new
hardcover is going up for sale. I am so disappointed.
Megan's rating: 3