Author J.K. Rowling's first novel since her best-selling “Harry Potter” series, “A Casual Vacancy,” hits bookstores today.
Fans have been waiting for more Rowling novels since her now-classic children's series was completed in 2007.
Few details have been given about “The Casual Vacancy,” which is Rowling’s first novel for adults. Rowling has made it clear that her new novel should not be compared to her past work.
“Although I've enjoyed writing it every bit as much, my next book will be very different to the Harry Potter series," Rowling said in a press release issued by her agent.
Leah Levine, who plays for Penn State’s Quidditch team, is looking forward to reading “The Casual Vacancy,” even though it’s not a new Potter book.
“I don’t expect this to be another Harry Potter,” Levine (junior-Spanish) wrote in an email. “What I do expect is awesome characters and a really good mystery with tons of twists and turns.”
Samantha Mitchell, member of The Three Broomsticks, Penn State’s Harry Potter club, admits that she has “a pretty heavy bias for anything Rowling.”
“She could have written a historical account of the significance of slugs and I probably would have read it,” Mitchell (junior-English and women’s studies) wrote in an email.
While the one question on everyone’s mind is whether Rowling's new book will be as successful as her past work, eager fans are optimistic.
Mitchell doesn’t think Rowling is trying to top what she has already done.
“Writers write, that’s what they do. Nothing is going to stop them from creating,” Mitchell said.
Kelsey Rogalewicz, secretary of The Three Broomsticks, is both excited and nervous for Rowling.
Since this is the author’s first book since the Harry Potter series, there are expectations for her to “make it big,” Rogalewicz (senior-English and Spanish) said.
"I really hope those who might have dismissed Harry Potter in the past will have a new appreciation for Rowling as a writer,” she said.
Despite being a novel for adults, Rogalewicz thinks that Harry Potter fans won't be hesitant to buy and read “A Casual Vacancy.”
“Because it is a different genre for an older audience, I think those of us who are older and have grown up with Harry Potter will be able to appreciate it more than younger Harry Potter fans,” Rogalewicz said.
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