Open up the back cover to any J.K. Rowling book and you’ll read about the many accomplishments that have catapulted her to fame and fortune: author of the Harry Potter series which has sold over 450 million copies worldwide and inspired eight hit films and three supplemental works, translated into 73 languages. She is an Order of the British Empire for services to children’s literature and winner of the Hans Christian Anderson Award, among many other distinctions. This year, Rowling dives into the opposing genre of adult literature in her newest novel, The Casual Vacancy, a story about Pagford, a small English town thrown into chaos following the sudden death of Barry Fairbrother, its parish leader who others looked to for reason. Vacancy is a lengthy 500-page character-driven drama that focuses primarily on the ugliness of human nature when glimpsed through the lens of everyday life. However, those with high expectations from the author of the best-selling book series in history will be sadly disappointed.
Original Author: Katherine Carreno