What Reading The Casual Vacancy Feels Like (A Spoiler-Free Review)
You know what else sucks?
The Casual Vacancy.
That’s not a spoiler at all. That was my honest attempt to save you from this horrible book that feels like it was written by a Death Eater posing as JK Rowling to torture all Harry Potter fans.
Still, I respect your right to form your own opinions and not be subjected to boring discussions on characterization and plot. So instead of a dry review, here’s a list of activities that feel similar to reading The Casual Vacancy.
Use this list to decide if The Casual Vacancy is your kind of thing or if you’re better off reading some other adult fiction book.
5 Activities That Feel Similar To Reading The Casual Vacancy
family clan reunions (unprepared).
If you like the kind of reunion where your mom crams eighty years of family history in ten minutes, points out aunts and uncles, recites their names, their jobs, and how many children they have or why they don’t have any yet AND expects you to absorb all that information in one sitting… then you will enjoy how JK introduces characters in her new book: one plain family per chapter with not even a crazy half-giant uncle or an awesome, gay headmaster wizard to break the monotony.
#2 Reading someone else’s diary.
If you like opening a book and diving straight into heavy drama (and by heavy drama, I mean small personal problems being treated as separate instances of existential crises), then this book is right up your alley. Enjoy the jarring jumps from a teenager’s acne problems to a local candidate’s struggles with stolen computers to a social worker’s attempts at dating. Hey, you’re not discriminating. A story is a story, right? Screw structure, just throw them all in!
#3 Watching Mara Clara, Marimar, or any Pinoy-style TV drama.
If you enjoy tv shows with only two types of people (1) the villainy, I-do-evil-things-just-because-I’m-evil, and (2) the silent and long-suffering, please-treat-me-like-a-rag-then-gargle-rinse-repeat character, The Casual Vacancy will be an explosion of awesome.
Watch as a town full of people take turns at treating each other like crap and being treated like crap in return! Enjoy the senseless exchange of revenge-y actions! Delight at the sudden turn of events in the last 50 pages (out of 500) where everyone suddenly becomes so much nicer or turns out to be nice all along! It’s like a dozen Snapes in one book, minus the I Killed Dumbledore On His Orders twist.
#4 Watching Mariah and Nicki Minaj fight.
If you like observing fights where you don’t have a stake at all, where both sides aren’t particularly appealing to you, or where you don’t know what the floop they’re fighting about, order The Casual Vacancy. Order it now and gorge yourself on 500 pages of mindless maneuvering. (You can play that video on an endless loop while waiting for your book.)
#5 Supporting Manny Pacquiao’s multidisciplinary activities.
If you think like this:
He’s such a great boxer! Why not release an album? Host a game show? Act in movies? OH I KNOW. WHY NOT RUN FOR PUBLIC OFFICE?! P’shaw, never mind that he’s not good at any of the non-boxing things. Let’s support him using the residual good will of his boxing success!
Then, chances are you will also think like this:
Let’s sign up for Pottermore and buy The Casual Vacancy. Never mind that the Pottermore gameplay sucks and the site is as bloated as ramen left overnight. Never mind that The Casual Vacancy doesn’t pass the standards we would expect from a new, unknown author’s book. IT’S JK FREAKING ROWLING!
If those are your kind of things, get the book. You have my blessing.