BOOK 1: The Cuckoo’s Calling by Robert Galbraith
The Silkworm description:
When novelist Owen Quine goes missing, his wife calls in private detective Cormoran Strike. At first, Mrs. Quine just thinks her husband has gone off by himself for a few days—as he has done before—and she wants Strike to find him and bring him home.
But as Strike investigates, it becomes clear that there is more to Quine’s disappearance than his wife realizes. The novelist has just completed a manuscript featuring poisonous pen-portraits of almost everyone he knows. If the novel were to be published, it would ruin lives—meaning that there are a lot of people who might want him silenced.
When Quine is found brutally murdered under bizarre circumstances, it becomes a race against time to understand the motivation of a ruthless killer, a killer unlike any Strike has encountered before..
I would say that it’s better than the first… but it’s so different you can’t really compare… both have Strike investigating crimes that are so unusual… though while the first one about half way through I had a pretty good idea who the killer was but with this one I didn’t have a clue until the accusation came out of Strikes mouth… it was a twisty story where every little piece of info counts… but I spent the whole time thinking it could be anyone… but when you get to the end… and that ending was a surprise… suddenly everything makes sense… and I’m already rereading it just so I can see it all come together again… I will say you have to pay attention because there are so many layers to the story as you see the actual characters and then the symbolic characters and trying to keep that straight was a bit of a struggle… because the victim is a writer and his latest book is a big factor in solving the case… and for all that complained about it in the first book… the F word has been cut down on a great deal but any comfort you might gain from that will be thrown out the window due to the dark and disturbing nature of the investigation… and the imagery that is used due to the victim being an author that apparently liked making people sick to their stomachs… all I’m saying is that if you can’t handle someone saying the F word you might not be able to handle this… but I thought it was masterfully done and what I really love most about these books is the detail that is put into it… I feel like I can see everything and you get these great descriptions of people that instantly feels like you know them while using very little of the book to do so… because with so many characters you’d think Galbraith would have to waste a lot of paper on introducing them but the story is told in a way that everything is built up while being very necessary and useful so no dragging… no wasted moments…
The one thing I do think got a bit repetitive especially since Strike mentioned it several times in the first book… is the fact how Strike kept thinking how glad he was that Robin was engaged because that kept things for getting complicated… and while in the beginning that sort of made sense considering the relationship he just got out of and the fact that he didn’t know Robin well at the time… now that they’ve really developed a good partnership and things are moving forward I found such comments a bit off-putting… it’s almost like if she was single then she would somehow make their partnership sexually tense… and while if she was single there’s always that chance of a relationship I find him thinking it would have to happen slightly conceited… yet even so it wasn’t enough to really in any way hamper the story but I do think in the next book such thoughts can be let go unless Galbraith really intends to make something romantic happen between them… which honestly I hope doesn’t happen… there’s something just nice about their working relationship that feels almost Holmes and Watsonish… altogether an amazing book and I’m just frustrated I’ll have to wait for a third…