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  1. #1
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    J.K. Rowling's 'The Casual Vacancy'

    Rowling has released a plot synopsis, title, and release date of her first post-Potter novel, The Casual Vacancy, and it's available for pre-order on Amazing.

    The new book, aimed at a grown-up audience, will be set in a seemingly idyllic English town called Pagford which is described as far more menacing than its pretty facade would indicate.

    It opens with the sudden death of a popular man whose unexpected demise shocks the town. The battle for his seat on the local council sets off "the biggest war the town has yet seen," with rich people fighting poor, parents battling their teenagers, and wives in conflict with their husbands.
    Apparently it's a black comedy. I kind of like that idea. I won't lie that I'm already excited Rowling's imagination is amazing.

    I'm actually surprised to have a new novel from her so soon after Potter ended. I wondered how she would be able to follow such a massive, unprecedented hit, and I'm really curious to see how the book fares, both in sales and reviews.

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    I am definitely intrigued.
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    Just put it on my wish-list. I'll definitely be reading it.
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    I'm glad it's being described as a black comedy. I really want to like her first non-Harry book.

    (As an aside, I've never been able to read even a chapter of the Twilight books, but I quite liked The Host.)
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    God, I can't imagine the pressure. It's nearly impossible to imagine anything she'll do now will top the HP series, which will fuel some haters that are envious of her success. Hopefully the larger reading population will view the work as a stand alone writing effort and not compare it to HP.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bostonfan View Post
    Hopefully the larger reading population will view the work as a stand alone writing effort and not compare it to HP.
    Hopefully the work will stand on it's own.
    3539 and counting.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bostonfan View Post
    God, I can't imagine the pressure.
    What pressure? The woman is a billionaire. If she never sold another book, she and her entire family (and likely their future families) can live out the rest of their years in comfort and security.

    And on top of that, she's already left an indelible legacy in pop culture history that will live on for generations years after we're all dead.

    How many people on this earth can say they've achieved that?

    I sincerely hope she has enough perspective to conceptualize this new book as nothing more than icing on the gigantic cake she already has.

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    Yeah, I can imagine her reaction to someone telling her that her new book sucks.

    "Whatever. I wrote Harry Potter. Suck it."

    (But I hope it doesn't suck and I'll buy it regardless. Because she wrote Harry Potter.)

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    Quote Originally Posted by centerstage01 View Post
    Yeah, I can imagine her reaction to someone telling her that her new book sucks.

    "Whatever. I wrote Harry Potter. Suck it."
    Love it!

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    Quote Originally Posted by milanessa View Post
    Hopefully the work will stand on it's own.
    Of course That's what I meant to say.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DBZ View Post
    What pressure? The woman is a billionaire. If she never sold another book, she and her entire family (and likely their future families) can live out the rest of their years in comfort and security.
    Why do multimillionaire actors strive to be better than their last wildly popular picture? Why do athletes who've won every accolade thier sport has to offer, come back with the hope of doing it even better? Any artist worth their salt always feels pressure to measure themselves against their last success. I doubt JKR is worried about topping her HP success. But it takes courage not to rest on one's incredibly successful laurels, and that comes with it's own pressure.

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    Already pre-ordered from Amazon. Can't wait!
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    I think JKR knows very well that she will never have the success of HP again. That's pretty much impossible.

    This book, however, will answer a different question - "Can JKR write anything that isn't Harry Potter?"

    I'm sure she feels the immense pressure of answering that question.

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    I was excited to finally learn more about the book and you can bet that within 24 hours of release, I'll have a copy in hand. I'm not comparing it to HP in any way. Rowling's place in literary history is already set, so she has nothing left to prove. She wrote this book b/c she's a writer and she's always going to be a writer which means she not going to stop writing just b/c her novels have achieved an unprecedented level of success. I don't doubt she has dozens of ideas for other stories scribbled down somewhere that she'd love to work on. I wouldn't be surprised if another 5-10 years down the road she publishes something else that's completely different.

    The HP books are my favorite. I have read and re-read all of them no less than 4 times each; they never stop entertaining me. Rowling is a gifted storyteller which is why I know this book will be great. Judging from the synopsis, it's not really something I would read...but b/c I know it's coming from her, I know it will be a good story with a lot of laughs. I love her sense of humor!

    I'm excited! I do hope she's working on that HP encyclopedia project she mentioned after DH came out. I'd love to read that...

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    Quote Originally Posted by kwanatic View Post
    I was excited to finally learn more about the book and you can bet that within 24 hours of release, I'll have a copy in hand. I'm not comparing it to HP in any way. Rowling's place in literary history is already set, so she has nothing left to prove. She wrote this book b/c she's a writer and she's always going to be a writer which means she not going to stop writing just b/c her novels have achieved an unprecedented level of success. I don't doubt she has dozens of ideas for other stories scribbled down somewhere that she'd love to work on. I wouldn't be surprised if another 5-10 years down the road she publishes something else that's completely different.

    The HP books are my favorite. I have read and re-read all of them no less than 4 times each; they never stop entertaining me. Rowling is a gifted storyteller which is why I know this book will be great. Judging from the synopsis, it's not really something I would read...but b/c I know it's coming from her, I know it will be a good story with a lot of laughs. I love her sense of humor!

    I'm excited! I do hope she's working on that HP encyclopedia project she mentioned after DH came out. I'd love to read that...
    4 times? Lightweight. I'm up to 8 I think. In fact, I figure I'm due for another round of audio listening. She is a writer and she's doing this because she wants to be more than just the author of HP. The release compared it to Alexander McCall Smith whom I adore. Well, I love the No 1 Ladies Detective series. I love JKR's wit and can't wait to see what she does with adult material.
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    Sept 30 seems a very long way away ...

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    I'm not at all surprised that it's aimed at adults. My guess is that this novel will be intentionally as different from Harry Potter as it can be, within the limits of her literary abilities and quality standards. That will make it difficult for direct comparisons.

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    How many of us have the opportunity (and the wealth to fall back on) to make our artistic endeavors our livelihoods?

    I've not read any of her HP books or seen the movies, but good on her for continuing to explore her talent and making new fans in the process.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gazpacho View Post
    I'm not at all surprised that it's aimed at adults.
    To be fair, HP was aimed at adults too. JKR thought she was writing adult fiction with HP--it was her publishers that remarketed it because of the storyline and simplistic prose style.

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    I consider the first 2 Harry Potter books children's books.Perhaps the first 3. I think with 3,4&5 the style of her pose started to shift to be more for teens and adults. HP 6&7 are more nuanced. So J.K has aged her writing with her readers.I love her writing so to say I'm looking forward to 'The Casual Vacancy' is to put it mildly.

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