◆ The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Galbraith
◆ Read August 2013
◆ English Edition
◆ English Edition
❝ A brilliant debut mystery in a classic vein: Detective Cormoran Strike investigates a supermodel's suicide.It must be noted that this review was written solely about the plot, characters and writing of this book, regardless of the fact that this was written by the one and only J.K. Rowling. Yes, I bought the book BECAUSE it was written by Rowling (I plead guilty!) but my opinion is not become biased because of it.
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.❞
I have read my fair share of crime/detective/mystery novels which has made my somewhat picky in which ones I like. Fact is (we all know it) that many authors in the genre tend to get one or two things right, but never the complete package. Some books have brilliant plots but the characters are boring and a cliché. Others have all of those things but the writing is poorly executed. There are very few authors who can pull it off to get the whole thing right in a book. To my surprise, this was one of them.
Everything in this novel just came together perfectly. The plot contains a big mystery that keeps you occupied from beginning to end. It is so well executed that even a experienced crime/detective reader like myself could not really figure out until the big reveal whether it concerned murder or suicide, and if so, who did it. For me, that's what makes me keep turning the pages and not put the book down. This book contains an amazing plot twist that I'm sure most of you will love because you do not really suspect for it to happen.
In addition I thought the characters were interesting and funny. They're not really special or original, but they serve a good purpose to the plot AND sometimes give you a break from the mystery with their backstories and details from their lifes.
The next thing is a simple matter of taste, but I liked the descriptions in the book (especially the ones about London!). For me they added something to mood of the book. I appreciate stylistic devices and a more complex use of language. But don't worry: If you're not a big fan of descriptions this could still be the book for you!
One thing I must add is that I did think the book was slightly too long. Especially towards the second half of the story things were dragging on a little bit. It was still a pageturner for me but there are things that could've been left out and I'm sure it will put some people off. Regardless of that small fact I still gave this book five stars because it surprised me in every way possible and I enjoyed it immensely.
5 stars because:
✓ Interesting plot/mystery
✓ Amazing plot-twist
✓ Descriptive writing