I'm not much of a review-writer, but I feel compelled to write a few words about this book. This story leaves me breathless and sobbing.
I read some reviews myself before buying it, and I remember one in particular, advising people to read the reviews before buying. I think that is excellent advice, because those hoping for a new Harry Potter are bound to be disappointed.
That being said, this book shares some of the, in my opinion, best qualities of the Potter-series. Rowling really is one of a kind when it comes to character-building and setting a scene. Not many authors would be able to create an authentic parallel universe, in which people play quidditch, get their mail by owl, and apparate, but she did. She even managed it so well that adults queued outside bookstores at odd hours to be the first to set their hands on the new children's book.
Her characters are so REAL. There is something evil and selfish in us all, and yet nobody is without some good in them. People turn out the way they do for a reason. And jet, never in her books do you get the feeling that that is a reason not to hold them accountable for their actions.
Being a nurse, a mother and the child of a man strongly engaged in helping wayward teens, I easily relate to some of the characters in this story, but I think that most people can relate to these people, and this village, which Rowling describes so vividly. It is not a pretty story, it is no fairy tale. But it is the strongest, most touching story I have read in ages.
Satisfied Audible listener since 2002. I mostly listen to Sci-fi and anything by Stephen King.
Wow this book was hard to finish. The only likeable charecture dies within the first few paragraphs. Everybody else is so self involved that they can't see the damage they are doing to all those around them. The narration is excellent but does not make up for the general meanness on display here. Also I found some of the charectures motivations to be a little weak.
J.K. Rowlings meticulous planning pulls all of the details of the story together in the end. She is amazing.
There are quite a few sexually explicit scenes. Its not their context but the very observant and raw telling of these moments that stick with you.
Spot on. Perfect voices and emotions and timing.
I would take Sukvinder out, I would tell her it gets better. You can't read this story with out feeling a connection, and deep sympothy with Sukvinder.
This book was such a disappointment. I knew before purchasing that this was marketed for "adult readers" and that Rowling wanted to distance herself from the Harry Potter books. However, this book retained NONE of the charm or appeal of the Potter series. I suppose the author thought she had to make the book as vile and trashy and depressing as possible to make it clear she didn't write for children only.
I'm no prude, but the constant foul language was just too much.
More importantly, there wasn't a single likable character, and the plot was almost nonexistent. I was thoroughly depressed reading this, and when I finished the book, I just felt a tremendous sense of relief that it was over. I don't know why I read the whole thing except that I kept looking for something redeeming in the book. It never came.
The narrator did well. No complaints with the performance, just the text.
The one redeeming quality was Rowling's descriptions of the characters and their interactions with each other. As always, she did an exceptional job with this. If any of the characters had been worth knowing, the characterizations would have been charming. As it was, the characters were so unlikable, it was all just too depressing.
I've heard that Rowling has battled depression. If these are the things that run through her mind, I don't wonder at it. I was quite depressed myself while reading this book.
After listening for an hour and a half, I finally gave up. Just could not generate enough enthusiasm to continue.
The story was so tedious. No excitement. The characters fell short.
Save yout time and money.
I listen to audiobooks as I have a brain injury which makes it hard for me to read for more than 10--15 minutes. Jewish grandmother to twins
I think the only reason this book was published was the author's prior history: if it had been written by a first time author it would likely have been put in the trash can. It is a horrible piece of writting not worth the listen. While there is a semblence of plot and storyline, it is not worthy of the hype and certainly is not worth the price of the book.
Someone who likes ugly mean character studies.
That it went on and on and it never went anywhere. And it was nasty and depressing the whole time.
None of them.
All of them.
I wasn't expecting a light Harry Potter book, but this book made me wonder if Rowling thought most people were like the despicable characters in her book. You could see touches of her wicked wit in the story, But it's all so nasty and unpleasant that it wasn't enough to justify the book. The characters were well-observed and well-drawn, but you wouldn't want to invest any time reading about them.
Someone else mentioned restarting the book several times. I did too. It's never a good sign.
JK Rowling captured the world with Harry and his friends, amazing adventures of memorable characters. In Casual Vacancy, Rowling again captures the reader with story of and characters; except this time, I didn't meet a single person I wanted as a friend. No fantasy this book, no magical heroes or evil villan; only unhappy people filled with the evils of selfishness and apathy.
Excellent plot. Great narration. Many subplots.
JKR completely distances herself from the HP franchise. This book explores nearly every social issue in todays world to include adultery, drug abuse, teenage sex, death, poverty, and the list goes on. I think it's a good book but I am hope that it will not be a series.
I was entirely caught up in the lives of the people of Pagford. I enjoyed their stories immensely and I was sad when it was over. How can anyone say it's boring? If you like Maeve Binchy, then this is the book for you, it has a similar way of placing you into the center of the lives being played out before you. The way that each person's actions, no matter how small, triggered the actions and reactions of all of the players was perfectly executed. I am glad I gave it a try, I hope she keeps it up in this vein of storytelling.