The Casual Vacancy by J. K. Rowling
Published December 22, 2014
- Author J. K. Rowling
This was the first non-Harry Potter book that JK Rowling released, and it‚’s taken me a long time to get round to reading it. I’m glad I eventually did, because it has all the hallmarks of Rowling’s ability to set up a world and immerse the reader in it.
Far more adult than the Potter books, this one follows the fortunes of several families in a sleepy village as they go about mourning the death of a council member and the process of replacing him. It’s fascinating to follow, a story that winds around from person to person, revealing inner thoughts and details as and when you need them.
Oddly, despite the bleak nature of the outcome, the book as a whole left me with a warm feeling of having invested in some characters and following them closely. It’s intricately plotted, full of detail, and as real in its human failings as Harry Potter was fantastic in its magic.