Tuesday, August 27, 2013

The Cuckoo's Calling, by Robert Galbraith, a.k.a. J.K. Rowling

(hb; 2013: first book in the Cormoran Strike series)

From the inside flap:

"After losing his leg to a land mine in Afghanistan, Cormoran Strike is barely scraping by as a private investigator.  Strike is down to one client, and creditors are calling.  He has also just broken up with his longtime girlfriend and living in his office.

"Then John Bristow walks through his door with an amazing story: His sister, the legendary supermodel Lula Landry, known to her friends as the Cuckoo, famously fell to her death a few months earlier.  The police ruled it a suicide, but John refuses to believe that.  The case plunges Strike into the world of multimillionaire beauties, rock-star boyfriends, and desperate designers, and it introduces him to every variety of pleasure, enticement, seduction, and delusion known to man."


Cuckoo's Calling is a solid detective novel with cinematic sensibilities - it emphasizes noiresque undercurrents and glitz in equal measure.  The element that kept me reading this novel, though, was its fully engaging, complex characters; its 'mystery' element was an okay-whatever affair for me, because I figured out who did what to whom early on (this isn't a knock on Rowling or her writing, but rather a symptom of me reading too many mysteries in as many years).

Solid, genre-familiar read, worth checking out from the library.

Followed by a future sequel whose title I don't know yet.

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