Robert Galbraith’s debut mystery, The Cuckoo’s Calling, gives us a tough detective, Cormoran Strike, investigating a supermodel’s suicide. Strike has one client, he’s living in his office, and his prosthesis (lost a leg in Afghanistan) hurts. He’s a mess, but an old friend seeks to open this suicide case. After initial investigation, Strike agrees that Lulu’s suicide is fishy, and every clue opens new doors to models, rock-star boyfriends, desperate designers, and extended family issues due to adoption.
p. 6 Journalists wrote that “the decadence of her new life had unhinged an already fragile personality.”
“And then at last, the frenzy wore itself into staleness, and even the journalists had nothing left to say, but that too much had been said already.”
Strike is quite a character himself, but he is meticulous in his research and thought process. His temporary secretary, Robin, proves to be quite an asset and he’s reluctant to have to let her go. She in turn adds a brightness to each page, and her questions and inventiveness help Strike’s investigation. There are plenty of twists and turns, and indeed Galbraith surprises us with the conclusion. The reader will stay vested and satisfied with The Cuckoo’s Calling.
In another twist to this book – the debut had decent sales. THEN it was discovered (leaked) that the actual author is J.K.Rowling, of Harry Potter fame. Sure enough, she admitted choosing the Robert Galbraith pseudonym, and sales skyrocketed. Frankly, it’s a well written book, either way. But it does demonstrate in this crazy world of publishing, that a “name” author gets the buzz.