Shortlisted for: UK Author of the year – Specsavers National Book Awards 2012
When Barry Fairbrother dies in his early 40s, the 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 facade 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 parish 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?
A big novel about a small town, The Casual Vacancy is J.K. Rowling's first novel for adults. It is the work of a storyteller like no other.
©2012 J.K. Rowling (P)2012 Hachette Digital
It was miserable, depressing and too many characters in need
The filthy language. I am not a prude, but this book is full of it.
He wasn't the problem
All of them they were so depressing
Sorry I even started to read it and certainly didn't finish it.
This is not what I expected from Rowling. Having said that it was not difficult to cast off the expectations of magic and fantasy and become immersed in the lives of a petty few.
Sadly I could draw many parallels to reality the story could of been about any committee in a closed or small community. The characters came to life quickly and very soon your second guessing only to be thrown down another path.
The plot is not overly complicated but twists and turns in a way that makes you keep listening and eager to witness the next interaction of characters.
Rowling is a good writer, this story is full of swear words that serve their purpose in building the characters and their intellect. As mentioned the plot is not so complicated but well written and if you can get over the expletives I challenge anyone not to at least find it interesting and thought provoking.... I'm sure you'll know someone just like one of the characters and identify with another in some way.
The performance was a little drawn out but listen at 1 1/2 speed and you still get the inflections and character and probably enjoy the story a little more for the pace.
Overall worth the credit - but that's just my opinion; try it for yourself!
Successfully against the odds I learnt life's path, rules and history by osmosis due to a modest yet real reading barrier. Now I can embrace history, classics and pulp with the spoken word. Thanks Audible
I never listen to books a second time but i would go back to parts of this book as new circumstances need review.
Confronting domestic violence and self abuse and trying to think like the victim Andrew Secvindar
Tim was very well rounded. Each character was believable
Secvindar as her dyslexia and lack of self belief stemmed from parents too proud to recognise their daughter needed support not threats.
From fantasy (Hogworts / Lower Whinging) to reality, (Packford / Yarville) with the same naturally magical, literary skills.
Wife, mother, nanna, part time actor, avid reader, world traveller, golfer, bridge player, lover of life.
I didn't enjoy this book because I was waiting for something to happen and it never did. It was boring and I lost interest. The Characters were too detailed by J.K Rowling for me. I loved the Potter books but this one didn't do a thing for me.
Yes the Potter books maybe
Too many to mention
This book was about awful people in an awful place. The language was not necessary and although the beginning started off with someone dying the story for me never really went anywhere and I lost interest in it.
kept me interested
life in a small town
The study of the connections between the different social claseses and the insight into the characters' lives seemed to come from inside knowledge about life in a small town
After a slow start and the need to change "parish council" to "local/shire council" in my mind ( ie not parish as in church) I became totally absorbed by the characters and insight into the politics and motivation of people living in a small community. No one is all good or all bad and this book is agreat reminder and insight into people.
Character, compulsive, insightful.
Rowling is like Isabel Allende. She gets to the dark heart of people through compelling story telling, beautiful language and gut wrenching insights.
This is my first long audio book. I expected to get bored by Tom's voice but his interpretation of the script and the characters had me agreeing and disagreeing with him. I really enjoyed what he brought to the story.
I would take Crystal of course.
I now have to go and read all of the Harry Potter books just to get more of this woman's writing style.
Absolutely spellbinding, the best yet
the whole story is an intermingling of various lives, pulled together in Rowling's inimitable style.
There was no best moment, as the whole book is a best moment.
Definitely, but listened to it spread over a few days. It is a book I shall listen to again quite soon.
If you are a little bit prudish or find sexual innuendos hard to deal with, then be aware in the book there are many references to this type of behaviour and ferocious swearing.
These are not inappropriate, as this reflects the way many people live, It is a poignant story, I would liken it to a modern day Dickens, making observation on life.
So what does a person who never need work another day in her life write just for the sheer joy of writing ?
This book is gritty. It is about death, drug addiction, poverty and the fears of the middle class.
I loved it, so well written and gripping.
"JK Rowling did not let me down"
I bought this book because it was written by JK Rowling, (I hadn't watched the TV adaptation) and to be honest, the very brilliant narration by Tom Hollander kept me reading past the first quarter of the book, but I did know that JK Rowling wouldn't let me down, and she didn't.
The Casual Vacancy is an excellent story, of ordinary every day life. People making assumptions about others, and ignoring or not wanting to see what's really happening right in front of them.
There will always be a love connection in every story somewhere, JK Rowling shows us it's not always the flowers and chocolates type.
Thank you JK Rowling don't be too slow with the next one.
Who knew parish politics and gossip could be so enthralling? Each character is well rounded and the way their lives intertwine in this small town is fascinating.
This is worst book I ever got language is unnecessary and boring hard to believe JKRowling could write this
"Narration is perfect"
The underlying theme of this book is quite dark and harrowing. Tom Hollander narrates this perfectly with the right amounts of sarcasm, scepticism and humour whilst at the same time bringing the characters to life. I don't think anyone else could have narrated this particular book with any more skill. I don't think I would have enjoyed it half as much if I had read it rather than listened.
"Not a feel good book"
Characters were gritty and realistic. Narrator used a variety of voices to bring them to life. This is a book about people rather than plot and the ending was depressing and unresolved.
"Fantastic in depth characters"
I was put off by early reviews of this book being boring. I'm so glad I eventually decided to listen to it. The characters are brilliant. You are completely invested in their lives. Every one is detailed to perfection. A truly gifted writer. The narrator is also excellent, he moved between accents, age and gender seamlessly, giving each character life. Thoroughly enjoyed this audio book!
brilliantly observed demolition of English small town politics. uncomfortable reading as brexit gloom envelopes us.
"Superb storyline! Wish it had been longer.."
Complex relationships, how they intertwine & change after the death of just one man is incredible! Underlying morals & a surprising main character! Throughly enjoyed this. Sad it's finished!
"Goes beyond our own little worlds."
An absolutely fabulous listen. Characters so varied and familiar to everyone. Although the concept of a local election in a small town could at first seem quite limiting in storyline the truth is that this book highlighted the enormous cross section in society regardless of the size of its catchment. We can never truly know what goes on behind closed doors. Would strongly recommend this book to everyone.
So many stories within one story. Wonderful characters, many with secrets unexpected in such a small village. Attention to detail so well done, I could see this story unfolding in my head.
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