Long time Harry Potter fans are waiting with baited breath for the much anticipated arrival of J.K. Rowling’s new novel for adults, The Casual Vacancy. As a long time Potterhead myself, I’ve had my copy of Rowling’s first post-Potter project ordered for months, but according to reviews, Potter fans should be careful with their expectations of this new novel.
According to a review from FoxNews: “This. Is. Not. A. Children’s. Book. If you’re looking for what made Harry Potter magical–Wizards! Spells! Flying Broomsticks!–you’re not going to find it. If you’re looking for what makes J.K. Rowling magical–emotion, heart–you will.”
While many Potter fans may be disappointed by the lack of Hogwarts, others are looking forward to seeing the darker side of their long time favorite author. The book is already at No. 1 on Amazon and many (like myself) who grew up with Rowling are excited for the book which got an early buzz due to references to sex and drugs that certainly set this new novel apart from the almost entirely wholesome Potter series.
The book is scheduled to come out Thursday, Sept. 27th and has been kept tightly under wraps by publishers Little, Brown and Company who required media outlets to sign non-disclosure agreements before being permitted to see the book.
What we do know, is that the book is set in the small British village of Pagford, and tells the story of a town after the unexpected death of a town official. It follows the conflict brewing in a middle-class village and the residents of a poverty-stricken, drug and crime infested housing project–a pretty far cry from Hogwarts and the fight for the future of the wizarding world.
Though this story seems bleak, the same Fox News review promises that while the story is low on the magic, it has all of the heart, humor, and plucky, human characters that made the Harry Potter series so endearing to readers. With all of the buzz surrounding her new novel, maybe its possible that Harry Potter was only the beginning of Rowling’s career, and not the entirety of it.