I’m an avid Harry Potter fan, so when J.K. Rowling came out with her first post-Harry Potter book The Casual Vacancy, I was tempted to read it. I never got around to it though, luckily, because I later heard that it was a complete flop.
The Cuckoo’s Calling (Rowling’s next try at post-Harry Potter writing), however, was a wonderful and well-written mystery book that reinvigorated my love for Rowling’s writing.
Sure, it wasn’t perfect. It probably could have been condensed into a shorter book- the detail sometimes dragged on. But, I didn’t realize until after I’d set the book down for the night that the plot had not progressed as far as it maybe should have 100 pages later. Somehow, Rowling manages to keep the story engaging as she carefully set up the many details and nuances of the story.
The Cuckoo’s Calling features Cormoran Strike, an ex-military officer turned private detective, who is struggling to pay rent and living out of his office after a blowup breakup. Together, with his new assistant Robin, they investigate the suicide of a famous young woman. On the payroll of the woman’s brother, they try to determine if the suicide could have been a murder.
Why I picked it up: I love J.K. Rowling and saw it on the bestseller’s table in the bookstore. After eyeing it for a week or two, I decided to just go ahead and get it.
Why I finished it: Despite the leisurely pace that the plot moved along at, the book really was relatively absorbing and I finished it in just a couple of days. Also, the ending is such a surprise that you’ll be happy you did.
Who I’d recommend it to: I would definitely recommend this book to those who like mysteries that aren’t to grim, fiction, and those who like J. K. Rowling (who is, by the way, writing under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith for this book).