J.K. Rowling - The Casual Vacancy - Little, Brown Book Group

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    • ISBN:9781405519229
    • Publication date:27 Sep 2012
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    • ISBN:9781405519212
    • Publication date:27 Sep 2012

The Casual Vacancy

By J.K. Rowling

  • Hardback
  • £20.00

The first adult novel by J.K. Rowling

When Barry Fairbrother dies in his early forties, the town of Pagford is left in shock.

Pagford is, seemingly, an English idyll, with a cobbled market square and an ancient abbey, but what lies behind the pretty facade is a town at war.

Rich at war with poor, teenagers at war with their parents, wives at war with their husbands, teachers at war with their pupils... Pagford is not what it first seems.

And the empty seat left by Barry on the parish council soon becomes the catalyst for the biggest war the town has yet seen. Who will triumph in an election fraught with passion, duplicity and unexpected revelations?

A big novel about a small town, The Casual Vacancy is J.K. Rowling's first novel for adults. It is the work of a storyteller like no other.

Biographical Notes

J.K. Rowling is the author of the bestselling Harry Potter series of seven books, published between 1997 and 2007, which have sold over 450 million copies worldwide, are distributed in more than 200 territories, translated into 73 languages, and have been turned into eight blockbuster films. She has also written two small volumes, which appear as the titles of Harry's schoolbooks within the novels. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them and Quidditch Through the Ages were published by Bloomsbury Children's Books in March 2001 in aid of Comic Relief. In December 2008, The Tales of Beedle the Bard was published in aid of the Children's High Level Group, and quickly became the fastest selling book of the year.

As well as an OBE for services to children's literature, J.K. Rowling is the recipient of numerous awards and honorary degrees including the Prince of Asturias Award for Concord, France's Legion d'Honneur, and the Hans Christian Andersen Award, and she has been a Commencement Speaker at Harvard University USA. She supports a wide number of charitable causes through her charitable trust Volant, and is the founder of Lumos, a charity working to transform the lives of disadvantaged children.

  • Other details

  • ISBN: 9781408704202
  • Publication date: 27 Sep 2012
  • Page count: 512
  • Imprint: Little, Brown
This is a wonderful novel. JK Rowling's skills as a storyteller are on a par with RL Stevenson, Conan Doyle and PD James. Here, they are combined with her ability to create memorable and moving characters to produce a state-of-England novel driven by tenderness and fury — Melvyn Bragg, The Observer
A needle-sharp and darkly comic expose of today's class-ridden society . . . A highly readable morality tale for our times — Emma Lee-Potter, Daily Express
The Casual Vacancy is a stunning, brilliant, outrageously gripping and entertaining evocation of British society today. [J.K. Rowling] has done a rather brave thing and pulled it off magnificently — Henry Sutton, The Mirror
One marvels at the skill with which Rowling weaves such vivid characters in and out of each other's lives — Christopher Brookmyre, The Daily Telegraph
Heartbreaking - turning the page seems unbearable, but not as much as putting down the book would be — Deepti Hajela, Associated Press
An exquisite and occasionally moving black comedy . . . The acid test - I suspect it would do well even if its author's name weren't J.K. Rowling — David Robinson, Scotsman
A big, ambitious, brilliant, profane, funny, deeply upsetting and magnificently eloquent novel of contemporary England . . . This is a deeply moving book by somebody who understands both human beings and novels very, very deeply — Lev Grossman, Time Magazine
Insightful, meaningful, daring and resolutely challenging to tabloid assumptions regarding the moral worth of individuals — Scotland on Sunday
The action bowls along compellingly, most of the characters are vividly drawn and there are some sharp - often very sharp - observations about their social pretensions . . . a bold and distinctive effort — The Sunday Telegraph
This is a novel of insight and skill, deftly drawn and, at the end, cleverly pulled together. It plays to her strengths as a storyteller — The Economist
The Casual Vacancy is a brilliant novel, entertaining, intelligent, moving, passionate and hard-hitting; touching on familiar subjects but approaching them with great originality and skill. Moreover, it's unputdownable . . . The novel is a triumph — Irish Times
Rowling is a great storyteller with a clear eye and a warm heart, and The Casual Vacancy is a moving and immensely pleasurable novel — Sunday Business Post Ireland
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In 2008, J.K. Rowling delivered a deeply affecting commencement speech at Harvard University. Now published for the first time in book form, Very Good Lives offers J.K. Rowling's words of wisdom for anyone at a turning point in life, asking the profound and provocative questions: How can we embrace failure? And how can we use our imagination to better both ourselves and others?Drawing from stories of her own post-graduate years, the world-famous author addresses some of life's most important issues with acuity and emotional force.

Alan Lightman

Alan Lightman - who worked for many years as a theoretical physicist - is the author of six novels, including the international bestseller Einstein's Dreams, as well as The Diagnosis, a finalist for the National Book Award. He is also the author of a memoir, three collections of essays, and several books on science. His work has appeared in The Atlantic, Granta, Harper's Magazine, The New Yorker, The New York Review of Books, and Nature, among other publications. He has taught at Harvard and at MIT, where he was the first person to receive a dual faculty appointment in science and the humanities. He lives in the Boston area.

Alex Kava

Alex Kava is the New York Times bestselling author of the critically acclaimed series featuring former Marine Ryder Creed and his K9 dogs, and the international bestselling Maggie O'Dell series. Her novel Stranded was awarded both a Florida Book Award and the Nebraska Book Award. Her standalone novel One False Move was chosen for the 2006 One Book One Nebraska and in 2007 she received the Mari Sandoz Award. Her political thriller Whitewash was also named one of January Magazine's best thrillers of the year.Published in thirty-two countries with over six million copies sold, Kava's novels have made the bestseller lists in the UK, Australia, Germany, Japan, Italy and Poland. She is a member of the Nebraska Writers Guild and International Thriller Writers. Kava and her pack of Westies divide their time between Omaha, Nebraska and Pensacola, Florida.

Alexander McCall Smith

Alexander McCall Smith is the author of over eighty books on a wide array of subjects, including the award-winning The No.1 Ladies' Detective Agency series. He is also the author of the Isabel Dalhousie novels and the world's longest-running serial novel, 44 Scotland Street. His books have been translated into forty-six languages. Alexander McCall Smith is Professor Emeritus of Medical Law at the University of Edinburgh and holds honorary doctorates from thirteen universities.

Ali McNamara

Ali McNamara attributes her over-active and very vivid imagination to one thing - being an only child. Time spent dreaming up adventures when she was young has left her with a head bursting with stories waiting to be told.When stories she wrote for fun on Ronan Keating's website became so popular they were sold as a fundraising project for his cancer awareness charity, Ali realised that not only was writing something she enjoyed doing, but something others enjoyed reading too. Ali lives in Cambridgeshire with her family and two Labradors. When she isn't writing, she likes to travel, read, and people-watch, more often than not accompanied by a good cup of coffee. Her dogs and a love of exercise keep her sane!To find out more about Ali visit her website: www.alimcnamara.co.uk or follow her on Twitter: @AliMcNamara

Ali Smith

Ali Smith was born in Inverness and lives in Cambridge. She is the author of three collections of stories and three novels. Hotel World was shortlisted for both the Booker Prize and the Orange Prize in 2001 and her latest novel, The Accidental, won the 2006 Whitbread Novel Award. Ali reviews regularly for the Guardian, the Scotsman and the TLS.

Catherynne M. Valente

Catherynne M. Valente is the New York Times bestselling author of over two dozen works of fiction and poetry, including Palimpsest, the Orphan's Tales series, Deathless and the crowdfunded phenomenon The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making. She is the winner of the Andre Norton, Tiptree, Mythopoeic, Rhysling, Lambda, Locus and Hugo awards. She has been a finalist for the Nebula and World Fantasy Awards. She lives on an island off the coast of Maine with a small but growing menagerie of beasts, some of which are human.

Celeste Ng

Celeste Ng grew up in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and Shaker Heights, Ohio. She attended Harvard University and earned an MFA from the University of Michigan. Her debut novel, Everything I Never Told You, won the Hopwood Award, the Massachusetts Book Award, the Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature, and the American Library Association's Alex Award. She is a 2016 National Endowment for the Arts Fellow, and she lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Courttia Newland

Courttia Newland has written three novels and has contributed to various anthologies including DISCO 2000, NEW WRITERS 8, AFROBEAT and TEENAGE KICKS. Film rights to THE SCHOLAR have been optioned and he is working on the screenplay.

Diane Janes

DIANE JANES grew up in Birmingham and has lived in the north of England for the last twenty years. Between marrying and raising two children she worked in seemingly every field, from mortgages to engineering, until she gave up the day job to write full time. This resulted in two shortlistings for the CWA Debut Dagger and subsequent publication. The Pull of the Moon was shortlisted for the 2010 CWA John Creasey (New Blood) Dagger.

Elizabeth Peters

Elizabeth Peters is a pen name of Barbara Mertz, who earned her Ph.D. in Egyptology from the University of Chicago's famed Oriental Institute. Over the course of her fifty-year career she wrote more than seventy mystery and suspense novels, and three nonfiction books on Egypt. She was the recipient of numerous writing awards, including grandmaster and lifetime achievement awards from the Mystery Writers of America, Malice Domestic, and Bouchercon. In 2012 she was given the first Amelia Peabody Award, created in her honor, at the Malice Domestic convention. She died in 2013, leaving a partially completed manuscript of The Painted Queen.

Farahad Zama

Farahad Zama moved to London in 1990 from Vizag in India, where the novel is set. He is a father of two, and he works for an investment bank.

Gabrielle Zevin

Gabrielle Zevin was raised by parents who took her to the library like it was church. She suspects that is why she became a writer. Her career began at age fourteen when an angry letter to her local newspaper about a Guns 'n' Roses concert resulted in a job as a music critic. Over eight novels for adults and young people, she has written about female soldiers in Iraq, mafia princesses in retro-future New York City, teenage girls in the afterlife, talking dogs, amnesiacs, and the difficulties of loving one person over many years. Her last novel, The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry, was a New York Times bestseller.

Iain Banks

Iain Banks came to widespread and controversial public notice with the publication of his first novel, THE WASP FACTORY, in 1984. He gained enormous popular and critical acclaim for both his mainstream and his science fiction novels. Iain Banks died in June 2013.

Jane Gardam

Jane Gardam has been awarded the Heywood Hill Literary Prize for a lifetime's contribution to the enjoyment of literature; has twice won a Whitbread Award and has been shortlisted for the Booker Prize.

John Fairfax

John Fairfax is the pen name of William Brodrick, who practised as a barrister before becoming a full-time novelist. Under his own name he is a previous winner of the Crime Writers Association Gold Dagger Award.

Jon E. Lewis

Jon E. Lewis is a historian and writer, whose books on history and military historyare sold worldwide. He is also editor of many The Mammoth Book of anthologies, including the bestselling On the Edge and Endurance and Adventure.He holds graduate and postgraduate degrees in history. His work has appeared in New Statesman, the Independent, Time Out and the Guardian. He lives in Herefordshire with his partner and children.Praise for his previous books:England: The Autobiography:'A triumph' Saul David, author of Victoria's ArmyThe British Soldier: The Autobiography:'this thoughtful compilation . . . almost unbearably moving.' Guardian'Compelling tommy's eye view of war.' Daily Telegraph'What a book. Five stars.' Daily Express

Jonathan Dee

Jonathan Dee is the author of seven novels, including The Locals, A Thousand Pardons, and The Privileges, which was a finalist for the 2011 Pulitzer Prize. A recipient of fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Guggenheim Foundation, he teaches in the graduate writing program at Syracuse University.