Meeting Rowling – “The Cuckoo’s Calling” by Robert Galbraith (a.k.a. J.K. Rowling)

November 2, 2013 at 8:31 pm 1 comment

“The Cuckoo’s Calling” by J.K. Rowling, Published in 2013

This book was an accident. I was walking around my library and saw it in the “New Books” section.  I thought I remembered something about it and checked it out.  When I got home I realized this was  a book Rowling written under a pseudonym.  I am new to Rowling and a bit unsure about this book.

Like all private detectives, Cormoran Strike is having a tough time. He is broke. He has been kicked out of the apartment he was sharing with his girlfriend.  H16160797is father is a famous musician with whom he has no contact. And he is continually struggling with the pain from his amputated leg.  One day the brother of the famous model Lula Landry walks into Strike’s office convinced his sister’s suicide three months prior was really a murder.  Though Strike is not sure that his client is not a bit off his rocker, he needs the money and so he takes the job.  Strike then spends a lot of time with the rich and famous trying to find out what really happened to Lula.

Rowling can write. She has a knack for conversation and cadence that I have not seen in a while.  You can hear the characters talking and exactly what tone they are using.  I found that impressive.  The story was really not that inventive. I did love the characters, particularly Strike’s secretary, Robin, who is only meant to be a temp.  She excited about working for a detective and has a lot of potential (because there will be future books).

The write up for this book says you have never met a private detective like Cormoran Strike. That is not true. You have met him if you have ever read a detective novel.  That said, he is truly endearing and likeable (think Wallander meets Poirot meets Jane from Prime Suspect).  He has boundary problems, he likes a few pints, he is hard to get close to but is struggling to get his life together.  You know the type.  It is a formula that works so I am not complaining.

What I will complain about is the length of this suspense novel.  It is over 400 pages.  And while I am not one to shirk at long books a suspense novel just by its very nature needs to be shorter than 400 pages or it just gets exhausting.

So the characters are fun. The story is pretty good.  The length is silly.   But hey I wouldn’t mind meeting Cormoran Strike again, or Rowling’s writing for that matter.  Just maybe with a bit more editing.

Other reviews to check out: 


Entry filed under: November 2013 reads. Tags: , , , , , , , , .

In vain have I struggled* – “Longbourn” by Jo Baker The stories we tell on trains – “Trains and Lovers” by Alexander McCall Smith

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There is some great literature out there, but there is a lot of bad literature as well. We shouldn't all have to read it. These are my recommendations and thoughts about the books I read.


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