I really love that J.K. Rowling is still writing under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith, even though everyone knows it’s really her. Overall, I don’t really like mysteries. For me, they all seem to follow the exact same patterns and are filled with tropes. Plus, I tend to like more character-driven novels and mysteries (at least, all the ones I’ve read) tend to be all plot. However, I was really pleasantly surprised when I read The Cuckoo’s Calling, the first book in the Cormoran Strike series. And, I must say, I’m still impressed with the series after finishing the second book.
Summary: After all the Lula Landry case, business boomed for private investigator Cormoran Strike and his sidekick, Robin. When a woman comes looking for her husband, novelist Owen Quine, because they have bills to pay and a daughter to take care of, Strike doesn’t expect to find him dead. And what’s more, he was killed in the same way as the hero in his upcoming novel. That leaves all his professional contacts, writers, publishing people, and students, as suspects for the gruesome murder.
Likes: I really like both of the main characters, Strike and Robin. They are so well-developed and have such great chemistry working together. Also, all of the side characters are quirky and memorable. The author even fleshes out all of their back stories. The details of the convoluted case are revealed slowly, tempting the reader to keep going until the big reveal. All in all, it’s a really strong mystery story and I had trouble putting it down.
Dislikes: I’ve never really noticed this in Galbraith’s (well, Rowling’s) writing before, but I feel like she repeated a lot of words and images throughout the story. That got a little repetitive after a while.
TL;DR: This book is a great mystery story, and I would definitely encourage you to pick it up even if you may not care for mysteries very much.