Book Review: The Casual Vacancy by JK Rowling


When Barry Fairbrother dies in his early forties, 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.


The sudden death of a Pagford Council Member results in a series of events which lead to more tragedy. A well told tale of life in a little town and the attitudes hidden behind the polite expression of neighbours. Barry Fairbrother is an upstanding member of the community whose shoes are hard to fill. The resulting competition for his seat on the council brings out the extraordinary in the contenders for his post and their family.

An outstanding story from an outstanding story teller. Rowling manages to convey characters with a depth that is just astonishing. No this isn’t Harry Potter and it’s not pretending to be.

Amazon UK

Amazon US


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