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The Cuckoo's Calling [Hardcover]

Robert Galbraith , J. K. Rowling
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (113 customer reviews)
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Book Description

April 30 2013
A brilliant debut mystery in a classic vein: Detective Cormoran Strike investigates a supermodel's suicide.

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 is living in his office.

Then John Bristow walks through his door with an amazing story: His sister, thelegendary 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.

You may think you know detectives, but you've never met one quite like Strike. You may think you know about the wealthy and famous, but you've never seen them under an investigation like this.

Introducing Cormoran Strike, this is the acclaimed first crime novel by J.K. Rowling, writing under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith.

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"One of the books of the year."—USA Today

"Robert Galbraith has written a highly entertaining book... Even better, he has introduced an appealing protagonist in Strike, who's sure to be the star of many sequels to come.... its narrative moves forward with propulsive suspense. More important, Strike and his now-permanent assistant, Robin (playing Nora to his Nick, Salander to his Blomkvist), have become a team - a team whose further adventures the reader cannot help eagerly awaiting."—Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times

"Rowling switches genres seamlessly...a gritty, absorbing tale."—People (3.5/4 stars)

"[Rowling's] literary gift is on display in this work. She crafts an entertaining story [and] comes up with an ending that I'll admit I was surprised by. . . . A fun read, with a main character you can care about and one you'll want to see again in other adventures."—Washington Post

"An extravagant, alien, fascinating world for its characters to explore...great pleasures."—Slate

"a strong and enticing read ... It's a gripping tale set in bustling London, and the author - whether called Galbraith or Rowling - shows superb flair as a mystery writer"
Irish Examiner

"It's really, really good - beautifully written with a terrific plot ... It's a terrific read, gripping, original and funny ... Please, please give us more of Robert Galbraith and Cormoran Strike. I can't wait for the next"—Richard & Judy, Daily Express

About the Author

Robert Galbraith is a pseudonym for J.K. Rowling, author of the Harry Potter series and The Casual Vacancy.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
29 of 31 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I read A Casual Vacancy, and quite enjoyed it. I thought Rowling contrasted two very different subcultures in British society well, wrapping a good story around the prejudices of both groups. When I read last week of Robert Galbraith being the nom de plume of Rowling for The Cookoo's Calling I thought
I would enjoy her writing despite the hype. And I did.

I did not expect to meet a riveting character in the form of Cormoran ex British forces officer who had one leg blown off by an IED in Afghanistan...whose mother was considered a super-groupie...and whose lover Charlotte has dumped him. Nor did I expect to be so intrigued by this man who is described as mammoth-like, tall and hairy, a ginger with unruly hair and a penchant for details. I didn't expect to actually care, and now wonder when I will get to learn more about Cormoran...or to see if the relationship between Cormoran and Robin, his temp secretary will blossom...Will Robin leave the stable Mathew for the thrill of the unknown? Rowling presents the young working woman well in the figure of Robin who is efficient, smart and compassionate.

This book is better that a Casual Vacancy - much much better. Rowling has entered the brain of an "all man" action figure whose sensitivities and emotionalism are powerful and evocative drivers. She has brought to life this very nice young man (young to me as I am the age, although do not have the same inclinations, as his mother)who is simply decent but equally complex. She presents the story in the contemporary context of technology, particularly in the art of detecting.

The issue for Rowling/Galbraith is that the challenge now is to bring on book two in a series of Cormoran Strike!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thrilling mystery! Aug. 2 2013
By Mona
Format:Kindle Edition
It's a mystery book you can't put down. The characters are intriguing and very realistically written, as is the dialogue, and the twists and turns at the end are definitely both surprising and satisfying to the reader.

At times, the main character's life description got a bit tedious (I wanted to get back to Lula and the mystery!) but my guess is that Rowling wants to continue this as a private detective series in the future (I'm hoping), so she wanted the readers see Strike as a familiar and endearing character.

Great summer read- I finished this in 2 days!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Good Read Sept. 5 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A fun book, not too deep, but with sympathetic characters and an interesting storyline. Very well written and a testament to Ms. Rollings abilitily to write for adults (as if that was ever in doubt).
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Can You Figure Out The Cuckoo’s Calling? Oct. 16 2013
By Scoopriches TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Let’s start with an obvious joke. I hope Robert Galbraith puts out a whole lot more books because he is really great at it.

Okay, that is out of my system now, mostly, and we can now get down the serious business of murder.

For those Muggles who are incredibly out of the loop, The Cuckoo’s Calling is a very thick murder mystery book that just came out a few months back. It was labeled as authored by newcomer Robert Galbraith and was receiving rave reviews. But due to a colossal blunder, it was revealed it have actually been written by Harry Potter writer J.K. Rowling. Cue media frenzy.

Which is where I come in, having quickly acquired The Cuckoo’s Calling by J.K. Rowling, and having recently completed it, I can now proclaim my love for this book.

The Cuckoo’s Calling stars Cormoran Strike, a very down in the dumps private eye who on a particular day gets a new temp receptionist, the young, intelligence, and newly engaged Robin Ellacott. That same day, another guest arrives, an actual paying customer, named John Bristow.

He wants Strike to re-investigate the death of Bristow’s famous celebrity sister, world renowned fashion model Lulu Landry, who three months earlier had taken a plunge off of a balcony on a cold winters night. The police have ruled it suicide. Bristow is convinced it is not.

And so begins an epic journey of Strike, ably assisted by the clever Robin, of tracking down the details of not only Lulu’s death and final days, but also so many parts of the rest of her life. From the interviews with Lulu’s driver and building security guard to tracking down her homeless friend to meeting her modeling colleagues, a portrait is gradually filled in by Strike of who Lulu was.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good read, but too long a wait for the conclusion Sept. 15 2013
Overall a good read, but really only picked up in the last 300 pages. The road to the ending felt long. Liked the characters; great character development. There were a lot of words used that required a quick dictionary check, however Britons may not have the same struggle. Still a fan of J.K. Rowling.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
By Jennifer Cameron-Smith TOP 50 REVIEWER
Cormoran Strike, now a private investigator, is a wounded veteran of Afghanistan. His private life is in turmoil, and his professional life isn't travelling too well either. He really can't afford to employ a new secretary, but he forgot to tell the temp agency. So when Robin Ellacott turns up to work for him, he knows he won't be able to keep her for long.

But then, a new client approaches him. John Bristow's sister, Lula Landry - a celebrity model - has met a violent death. Lula fell from a snow-covered balcony in Mayfair and while the authorities consider her death to be a suicide, John Bristow is not so sure. He's prepared to pay Cormoran Strike well to investigate. So, with some reservations, Cormoran accepts the case.

As the investigation proceeds, we meet some memorable characters and find that Lula Landry's life is full of contradictions and puzzles. While Lula's friends include other models, rappers and fashion designers, not all of her friends belong to the glitterati.

As Cormoran Strike interviews witnesses and Lula's family and friends, and reconstructs events, he is trying to deal with the consequences of his failed relationship and aspects of his new life. The deeper he delves into Lula Landry's life and death, the more dangerous his own life becomes.

I thoroughly enjoyed this novel and just couldn't put it down. I read it in one day because I just had to know how the story would end. Cormoran Strike is an intriguing private investigator: thorough, but with some personal issues he needs to address. Robin Ellacott is brilliant as his assistant (using more than her secretarial skills), and I hope to read more novels featuring Strike and Ellacott. Both the characters and story itself worked for me.
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Most recent customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars This book surprised me; I expected to be unimpressed ...
This book surprised me; I expected to be unimpressed. This was a book on the local library's summer reading competition and so I gave it a shot. Read more
Published 9 hours ago by Tracey Billson
5.0 out of 5 stars great new series!
Always a fan of J. K. Rowling. A great new cast of characters to follow. Have already read Book 2 and waiting for the next!
Published 1 day ago by Robina Stef
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
First of (hopefully) a series. Engrossing.
Published 2 days ago by Gail Grant
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Loved it!
Published 6 days ago by reader extraordinaire
3.0 out of 5 stars Unecessary bad language
I liked the suspenseful story and the interesting characters. The book is very well written but I found the overabundance of the f... word very disturbing. Read more
Published 11 days ago by Brian Tupper
4.0 out of 5 stars Worth spending every buck on this one!
Its stunning all the pages of the novel are worth it. You will surely get obsessed with coromon and robin will need a light use of dictionary. Read more
Published 12 days ago by Amazon Customer
2.0 out of 5 stars Two Stars
I was sorrily disappointed in this book, Perhaps I expected more than I got.
Published 12 days ago by Alexandra
4.0 out of 5 stars Slow beginning and a surprise ending.
Slow beginning and a surprise ending.
Published 13 days ago by DOROTHY CARMICHAEL
4.0 out of 5 stars Murder mystery
Kept me guessing and couldn't put book down. Looking forward to the next "Strike" mystery. Hopefully this is just the beginning of a successful series.
Published 20 days ago by Donna Shirley
5.0 out of 5 stars This is a must read
Truly a masterpiece! Cormoran Strike is the most fascinating investigator of this generation.
Published 21 days ago by Louise E. Valle
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