So. Rowling's The Casual Vacancy. Yep, I bought it and have read some of it. About 200+ pages, in fact. And yet, still can't place how I feel about it.
This is a spoiler-free zone.
Hopefully you know the synopsis, if not, here's a taste in very un-literary like terms: angel-like man of a quaint, postcard-like town dies unexpectedly, town is then thrown into a frenzy, because, first, guy also just happens to hold an authoritative seat in the town council, and second, because people also miss him.
Gavin was already a little repelled by the sight of his dead friend's texts on his phone, and one of the girls from the rowing eight, still crying as she walked back from assembly, found a form Barry had signed in her schoolbag, and became almost hysterical.Rowling spends a lot of time telling us how people react when someone dies unexpectedly, and most often they're thoughts no one would utter aloud because they'd be terrible, horrible people (tone of novel/ not necessarily my opinion). There is much inner dialogue from the entire cast of characters. And while some of it is very touching and sympathy-inducing, the majority of these thoughts are about how life really stinks and how unhappy they are with the path they've chosen. And the prevalence of this morbid/depressing thought process is likely prompted by the fact that a seemingly healthy and happy man has suddenly just dropped dead. It's clear that no one can really wrap their heads around it.
The writing is as good as I expected, but the storyline, itself, just seems slightly run-of-the-mill. The characters are often over-dramatic and their thoughts, typical, in the sense of what makes for good entertainment today. While I'm not terribly impressed at the moment, I'd be a fool to make a judgement before I've gotten farther along in the novel. Because, really, so much can happen in 300 pages.
I'm almost thinking that the final post will be overwhelming, and can't possibly begin to imagine what I'll focus on when I do sit down to write it, as the novel has so much to offer for discussion. Can't wait to see what other read along participants are saying!
See Brenna's post to visit other blogs participating in this challenge.