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The Cuckoo's Calling (Cormoran Strike) Hardcover – 18 Apr 2013

4.2 out of 5 stars 4,787 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Sphere (18 April 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1408703998
  • ISBN-13: 978-1408703991
  • Product Dimensions: 16.3 x 3.9 x 23.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4,787 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 13,682 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

The Cuckoo's Calling reminds me why I fell in love with crime fiction in the first place (Val McDermid)

One of the most unique and compelling detectives I've come across in years (Mark Billingham)

One of the best crime novels I have ever read (Alex Gray)

Everytime I put this book down, I looked forward to reading more. Galbraith writes at a gentle pace, the pages rich with description and with characters that leap out of them. I loved it. He is a major new talent (Peter James)

Just once in a while a private detective emerges who captures the public imagination in a flash. And here is one who might well do that . . . There is no sign that this is Galbraith's first novel, only that he has a delightful touch for evoking London and capturing a new hero. An auspicious debut (Daily Mail)

In a rare feat, Galbraith combines a complex and compelling sleuth and an equally well-formed and unlikely assistant with a baffling crime in his stellar debut . . . Readers will hope to see a lot more of this memorable sleuthing team (Publishers Weekly, starred review)

Laden with plenty of twists and distractions, this debut ensures that readers will be puzzled and totally engrossed for quite a spell (Library Journal)

A scintillating debut novel . . . Galbraith delivers sparkling dialogue and a convincing portrayal of the emptiness of wealth and glamour (The Times, Saturday Review)

Utterly compelling . . . a team made in heaven and I can't wait for the next in the series (Saga Magazine)

The detective and his temp-agency assistant are both full and original characters and their debut case is a good, solid mystery (Morning Star)

The plot could have come from an Agatha Christie novel and yet The Cuckoo's Calling is absolutely of today, colourfully written and great fun (Bookoxygen.com)

Galbraith demonstrates superb flair as a mystery writer (Birmingham Post)

This debut is instantly absorbing, featuring a detective facing crumbling circumstances with resolve instead of clichéd self-destruction and a lovable sidekick with contagious enthusiasm for detection . . . Kate Atkinson's fans will appreciate his reliance on deduction and observation along with Galbraith's skilled storytelling (Booklist)

The most engaging British detective to emerge so far this year . . . An astonishingly mature debut from Galbraith, it marks the start of a fine crime career (Daily Mail online)

Rowling is a formidable storyteller . . . the plot is tightly moulded and told (Mark Lawson, The Guardian)

A sharply contemporary novel full of old-fashioned virtues . . . wonderfully fresh and funny. I hope this is the inauguration of a series that lasts long enough to make Harry Potter look like a flash in the pan (Jake Kerridge, The Daily Telegraph)

The appeal of The Cuckoo's Calling doesn't depend at all on Rowling's prior status. All credit to her: she has created a really good series here. Strike will be back (Evening Standard)

Rowling's descriptions of contemporary London are excellent (Mail on Sunday)

It should come as no surprise that her first foray into crime fiction is so accomplished . . . a brilliant depiction of London life . . . at heart it's an engrossing and well-crafted who-dunnit. Unsurprisingly excellent (Sunday Mirror)

It's probably best, for the moment, to forget Robert Galbraith's real identity; this is a very good book in its own right (Independent)

Her crime debut beguilingly shows that she can renounce magic and yet be magical (Sunday Times)

An accomplished piece that thoroughly deserves its retrospective success (Financial Times)

A gripping, finely crafted and atmospheric mystery, and its charismatic hero, ex-solder-turned-private-eye Cormoran Strike, is a brilliant creation (Sunday Business Post)

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 (Daily Express)

The work of a master storyteller . . . This is a sharply contemporary novel full of old-fashioned virtues (Telegraph)

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 (New York Times)

The master is back. In The Cuckoo's Calling, a detective novel that Rowling published under the pseudonym of Robert Galbraith, she returns to the strengths that made Harry Potter - the beautiful sense of pacing, the deep but illusionless love for her characters - without sacrificing the expanded range of The Casual Vacancy. In doing so, she's written one of the books of the year (Charles Finch, USA Today)

Rowling moves through the polished world of fashion designers and rock stars with the same aplomb as she did when writing about wizards and witches (Vogue)

Rowling switches genres seamlessly ... A gritty, absorbing tale (Ellen Shapiro, People)

Cleverly plotted ... Rowling serves up a sushi platter of red herring, sprinkling clues along the way, before Strike draws a confession out of the killer in a climax straight out of Agatha Christie (Entertainment Weekly)

One of the great pleasures of The Cuckoo's Calling, as with most detective stories, is observing the gumshoe's Aha! moments, without being told what they are ... Money and general fabulousness does for The Cuckoo's Calling what magic did for Harry Potter, creating an extravagant, alien, fascinating world for its characters to explore ... The Cuckoo's Calling is fun (Slate Magazine)

It's terrific ... A brilliant achievement, mordantly funny and monumentally absorbing ... A masterful novel, the kind of big, noisy, busy, beautiful book in which it is so easy and so pleasurable to become enmeshed (Chicago Tribune)

I wasn't disappointed. Whether she's writing about Dementors or detectives, Rowling is a pro (Daily Beast)

The private eye novel is not dead. It was merely waiting for Robert Galbraith to give it a firm squeeze, goosing it back to bold, new life. Hardboiled crime fans are going to go cuckoo for this one. I haven't had this much fun with a detective novel in years (Duane Swierczynski, Shamus and Anthony Award-winning author)

Book Description

The acclaimed first crime novel by J.K. Rowling, writing under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith.

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio Download
I came across this novel when browsing the new releases and thought it looked interesting and worth a read. I'm glad I took the punt because the Cuckoo's Calling is a terrific mystery story. The brother of a troubled model calls in a private investigator following her death in what the police are treating as suicide. Everything points to this but as we get deeper in to the novel it becomes clear that all is not as it seems.

The private investigator Cormoran Strike is a terrific character: ex-army turned P.I going through a messy separation from his fiancé and whose business is in real financial trouble he is immediately sympathetic. The other characters, from eccentric fashion designers to drug-addicted musicians feel real and the dialogue is believable. The mystery is satisfyingly complex with a nice conclusion that I didn't see coming.

One of the things that really set this book apart for me in the crowded genre of private investigator fiction was the quality of writing, depth of character and the wonderful sense of place Galbraith brings to the novel. Galbraith's vivid descriptions bring the story to life and we feel like we are there with Strike and his temporary secretary Robin as they solve the mystery. I suppose I would describe this as quite an old-fashioned style thriller with an emphasis placed on interviewing witnesses and gathering clues rather than action and this really helped with the character development.
I hope there will be more books in the series and I'll certainly read them if they are released. Very highly recommended.

p.s: excellent narration of the audio book from Robert Glenister.
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Format: Hardcover
So many reviews and that tells the story alone. J K Rowling is a literary sensation, after Harry Potter I confess I was slightly let down by Casual Vacancy, but I think I didn't bring enough to the book, and some of the overt politics grated.
However this book I loved. It shows a strong narrative ability that gives the lie to those that think that Rowling is just "lucky". She clearly works hard at her plotting and though over long in places the chapters keep pace and are always illuminating the plot.

I like the Robert Galbraith name, it gives her a chance in the tradition of other authors (King, Christie) to step away from the Potter brand - as a crime debut novel it is very good and I for one hope that she keeps the conceit going when she writes book two. The novel feels contemporary and realistic to the London I know and grounded in realistic and rich characters. Her opening chapters about the arrival of a temp to a new job ring true to someone who has temped and show that she has done her research and kept her grounded feel that the early Potter books had. The thing to remember about Rowling is that she writes books that are worth reading, she may not be writing the kind of literary fiction that one would study on an English Lit course, but she IS writing the kind of work that connects, enthrals and entertains readers. Sometimes a little misanthropic in its view of life but all in all a very absorbing read and I look forward to more in the series.
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By S Riaz HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 5 Jun. 2013
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
This is a wonderfully entertaining new crime debut, which although it contains nothing amazingly original, works really well. Firstly, there is the main character, Cormoran Strike - a wounded war veteran, with a troubled past, damaged love life and financial woes, which see him sleeping in his office when we first meet him. Strike has left the army, which provided him with the structure and home life his mother never could, and set up as a Private Detective. The only problem is, a lack of paying clients. He then receives a new temporary secretary, Robin Ellacott, with her slightly stuffy fiance and her secret desire to be a detective. Both Strike and Robin, are fully fleshed out characters that we care about deeply by the end of the book.

The crime Strike is asked to investigate involves a famous supermodel, who falls (or is pushed) from her balcony on a snowy, London night. Lula Landry is the adopted daughter of a wealthy family and her adopted brother is insistent that she had no suicidal feelings when he met up with her that day. As Strike sets out to investigate, we are introduced to a cast of identifiable characters - the effeminate dress designer, drug taking Paparazzi avoiding boyfriend, disgrunted 'wannabee' film star chauffeur, elderly, dying mother, disapproving family members, etc. Although the plot is really quite a simple one, it works very well. The author has created a totally realistic scenario, with London almost becoming an extra character as Strike walks the streets and a satisfactory plot with a good cast of suspects.

I would say that Cormoran Strike is the best new addition to the P I genre that I have read for a long time. He certainly deserves a series and I hope to see him appear in many more books.
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Format: Hardcover
It's hard to put your finger on exactly what it is that makes The Cuckoo's Calling such a terrific new Private Investigator crime fiction debut. On the surface it seems straightforward, unexceptional and unambitious, everything fits the established conventions, there's nothing immediately new that stands out, and yet it's an utterly compelling read with strong characters that wraps you up completely and thrillingly into the investigation.

There's certainly nothing significantly new in the nature of the Private Detective at the centre of the book and series. Yes, the circumstances are a little different and the family background a little more colourful than most, but at heart, Cormoran Strike doesn't stray too far from the template - ex-army rather than ex-police, with a complicated personal life, a detective business that is on its last legs (no pun intended on Strike's service injury), clients are drying up, the loan that has set him up in London's Denmark Street is being called in and he's in the middle of a messy break-up with his fiancée. Nothing particularly noteworthy so far, not even the fact that the temp agency has just landed him with a new partner - sorry, a new secretary, Robin, who is only supposed to be around for a few weeks, but of course ends up making herself quite useful, not to say even indispensable, creating the obligatory mismatched team in the process.

There's nothing particularly exceptional either about the high profile case - the death of a supermodel - that lands in his lap and keeps the wolves away from the door just that little bit longer.
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