J.K. Rawlings. Harry Potter. Casual Vacancy. All over the web is the shock, horror, laud, something that is a successful MG writer breaking into a completely different market. I started out annoyed by her. Mostly because she makes so much money, biased of me, but there you have it. Does someone who wrote so successfully have to compete with the other literary/slow writers who don't own an island, you know, the ones who write behind the door between orders, or keep the notepad under the washing machine so they can write between loads?
The other issue with the book for me is that she has a reputation of being a 'safe' author for children. A huge lament is running abroad that her book will lure innocent children into shocking scenarios because Casual Vacancy is an extremely adult book. This would be less of an issue if she had published under a pseudonom, but alas, she did not.
I've decided to forgive her however, and here's why: She stayed true to Harry Potter through all seven books. She didn't throw in an anti-middle class morality like she could have in the end, like seems to be the entire exposition of CV. She maintained a tone with the discipline I can only admire. So, because of that follow through, I'm giving her permission to write something else, different genre, different audience. She feels much better now.
Personally, I'm not going to read it. The most telling review I read went something like, "I love small town politics. This book was amazing! I don't think anyone who is bored by small town politics will like it at all." Not my cup of tea, or butterbeer either.
Is anyone going to give the very adult Casual Vacancy a try? If so, let me know what you think.