Private detective Cormoran Strike is back on a new case in The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith (a pseudonym for Harry Potter author J. K. Rowling). After solving the high-profile murder of supermodel Lula Landry in last year’s The Cuckoo’s Calling, Strike has had almost more business than he can handle, most of it filled with divorce cases, jealous lovers and jobs for the tabloids. It’s not particularly fulfilling work but it’s allowed him to finally start clearing his debts, even if he’s running himself ragged in the process, causing his leg, which was amputated after an explosion in the war in Afghanistan, to become increasingly more painful.
There was a bit of a stir when the warmly received The Cuckoo’s Calling was discovered not to be Robert Galbraith’s debut novel, but that he was in fact a pseudonym for J.K. Rowling. The reasons behind the pseudonym seem pretty obvious considering the critical and public reaction to Rowling’s previous novel, The Casual Vacancy. Using a different name allowed Rowling anonymity, where her book could be taken on the value of its content alone, without the hype, expectations and preconceptions that would have come from releasing “J.K. Rowling’s new novel”. And, tellingly, Galbraith got some very good reviews before the secret slipped, with several reviewers finding it hard to believe that The Cuckoo’s Calling could be a debut novel.
The Cuckoo’s Calling is a pretty straight-forward detective story, but is relentlessly entertaining and filled with memorable characters. It tells the story of the death of Lula Landry, a supermodel whose fall from her penthouse apartment was ruled a suicide by the police. Continue reading