J. K. Rowling is renowned for her minutiae in creating a fully functioning microcosm: in her novels, each character has a unique personality, distinctive habits and a revelatory past, clinging to his/her every word and action. Places and villages have their own identity and play key roles throughout her stories. It is common knowledge that she has written entire biographies of every single character from her Harry Potter saga, no matter how insignificant to the main story. This, I believe, is the instigator of the distinct touch of realism found in her novels, to which we can all relate, even in the more fantastical settings she has penned.
The Casual Vacancy is one of the most realistic novels I have ever read, non-fiction included. No, it is not Harry Potter. It is not full of magical incantations and fantastical beasts. It is not a suspense/crime novel either. Continue reading “The Casual Vacancy, by J. K. Rowling: A Review”