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filmfann's avatar

Is anyone else reading "The Casual Vacancy"?

Asked by filmfann (40619 points ) October 5th, 2012

Are you enjoying this book? Let’s not give away any plot twists, but can you describe how into the book you are?
I love JK Rowling, but I am having trouble starting this book.

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9 Answers

marinelife's avatar

I didn’t like the sound of it from what I heard in a story on JK Rowling.

wundayatta's avatar

I agree with @marinelife. From what I’ve heard, it doesn’t sound all that appealing. But I’m a science fiction reader. We’ll see what people think. If it begins to sound like a lot of people think it’s worth reading, I might give it a try. But somehow I don’t think it’s going to pass that hurdle.

zensky's avatar

Here are the first 27 pages – let’s see.

wundayatta's avatar

Not really the first 27 pages. Random selections from the first 27. And nothing to make you want to read the novel. It sounds like Peyton Place. Some kind of stylistic, gossipy thing that moves slowly and doesn’t seem to have a point. About the opposite of the Harry Potter thing. And none of the characters seem very likable. It all sounds so dreary and stultifyingly British. I suspect readers will end wishing they had died in the first two pages, just as the main character did.

harple's avatar

@wundayatta “stultifyingly British”?!?! Almost making me want to read it now ;-)

wundayatta's avatar

@harple We Americans have our bad habits and sources of tedium, too, I’m sure. But you have to admit that you have some uniquely British habits, such as extolling the vapid details about village life in that way only the Brits can do.

Our faults are in other areas, and I am perfectly happy to own up to them. I’m sure it must nauseate you when we go on and on about baseball or American football. Or our cockiness. I would find that so annoying if I weren’t Amer…. hell! I find it annoying even though I am American!

harple's avatar

@wundayatta Ah, village life… gotta love it! ;-)

Adagio's avatar

I have heard 2 radio reviews of the book, one from the BBC and the other from a Radio New Zealand reviewer, on the whole both spoke positively of the book. I remember the BBC reviewer commenting that while she did not consider JK Rowling a great writer, she she did consider her a marvellous storyteller. If the Harry Potter books are any indication, I would not disagree… But of course you have asked for personal experiences of The Casual Vacancy and I cannot offer you that.

El_Cadejo's avatar

Part of me really wants to read the book because its JK Rowling and I am totally in love with the Harry Potter series but another part of me is apprehensive. The plot descriptions I read online say

“When Barry Fairbrother dies unexpectedly in his early forties, the little town of Pagford is left in shock. Pagford 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. Rich 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 town’s 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?”

To me, that sounds like a really gossipy and kinda lame book. I don’t know, maybe I’ll get around to reading it but I’m probably going to wait until I have less on my “to read” list and if I have some friend read it and tell me they really enjoyed it. Otherwise its kinda just like meh….

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