First of all, I must say, as it is written by J.K. Rowling, the author of the very well known Harry Potter books, which my generation seems to have grown up around I was unsure of what to expect of her first adult novel. One thing I feel it is paramount to say for any prospective readers of the novel is not to go in with expectations, nor pre-judgements because you may not get the most out of it.
I love the ambition of the novel, it is successful in nearly every objective it appears to try and achieve, I did believe that J.K.Rowling would try to allow this novel to separate her from any typical categorization of her writing, and by Jove old chaps it does that and more! Honestly, it was a slight shock to read, because of its complete difference from Harry Potter, but that’s what so good about it; whereas Harry Potter is a comparatively gentle fantasy about magic, The Casual Vacancy is a crude and real epitomization of life, and the select groups of people within it. The maturity, honesty and quite frankly bravery of the novel is inspiring, for someone so established in a genre to write a fantastic novel so completely removed from that specific genre can certainly be tricky, and needs courage. So hats off to J.K. for that!
The novel contains various sections of the town, and it battles with varying topics such as abuse, sex, death, rivalry, politics, drugs, it seems to establish the typical English town from the ‘acceptable’ topics we all know about to the slight more hidden and taboo subjects.
It really is rather tricky to write a review without revealing any spoilers of any kind, and there are quite a few moments that are best read by oneself, but I will say that it is a very interesting read, and I would certainly recommend it, but do not expect a happy, and child friendly novel for it is far from that….however what it is is an astounding mixture of humour, romance, tragedy and a big fat bundle of life… Seriously read it….be prepared…..but read it.
Another review to come later of The Fault in Our Stars by John Green, as a heads up I finished that book so quickly because of its pure ability to glue my hands to the book and not let go til I’d finished, absolutely incredible.