I’m grateful to my kids for introducing me to the “Harry Potter” books by J.K. Rowling. “The Casual Vacancy” is Rowling’s first novel for adults. Set in the fictional village of Pagford, it’s a story of small town secrets and rivalries. If you spent years immersed in the magical world of Hogwarts, you likely have your name on the waiting list for Rowling’s newest work, which hits the shelves this week. While you wait to be sorted for your hold, check out some books by other authors who have written for both younger and adult audiences:
“Plugged” by Eoin Colfer
Colfer, author of the Artemis Fowl series, has made the leap to adult fiction with a crime novel. “Plugged” combines action, suspense and humor. Daniel McEvoy, a transplant from Ireland to New Jersey, works as a doorman for a seedy nightclub and tries to ignore the PTSD that lingers from his war experiences. When his almost-girlfriend is murdered, he stumbles into a world of barely organized crime.
“Star Island” by Carl Hiaasen
Hiaasen has written a variety of books for teens and adults. In his most recent adult fiction offering, a pop star’s stunt double (she makes public appearances when the singer is “unwell”) is kidnapped. A quirky group of interested parties sets out to recover the duplicate, while trying to avoid revealing her existence or identity.
Tres Navarre series by Rick Riordan
Before he penned the ultra-popular Percy Jackson books for kids, Rick Riordan had already garnered several writing awards for a mystery series featuring a South Texas detective named Tres Navarre. With seven books in the set, these should keep you occupied for a while. If you want to begin at the beginning, start with “Big Red Tequila.” If you want the most recent one, go for “Rebel Island.”