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on 9 September 2017
Robert Galbraith is of course JK Rowling (did she really expect to keep that a secret?) The private detective is Comoran Strike and his assistance is Robin. Both likeable characters.
The plot is interesting but deviates too often as though the author is trying to page fill. Much of this cut out by the TV adaptation which is excellent.
I have never read anything else of JK Rowling but obviously know of her success with Harry Potter. I doubt this would had have been taken on by the TV people if the author was not so famous. Having said that they have done a good job.
Recommended but the TV adaptation is much better
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on 18 February 2018
Really surprised there isn't a thread for this book here yet, maybe I just couldn't find it. We all know that Robert Galbraith is really J K Rowling and I am a bit late to this book series. I was intrigued for a long time about these book so I thought I would dive in. A model falls to her death and her brother (she was adopted) hires Cormoran Strike, ex-Army, ex-happy, ex-housed, to investigate because he knew the brother in an earlier life. Cormoran also hires his last assistant for the job, as money is running out and he can never get an assistant that suits. A temp, Robin, comes into his life and makes it a little better for now.

The plot, for me, was ok. A little cliched with 2D characters; model, rapper, fashion designer - just worlds that hold no interest for me and I wasn't that fussed about the murder. But, the setting up of Strike and Robin as a crime-fighting duo was really interesting. Strike is a fascinating character and one I'd like to read more about. And Robin, efficient, compassionate and ambitious, was a great character too. I love them together and I hope they get some more gruesome and interesting crimes to solve.
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on 31 December 2014
Not a bad book at all.

If I hadn't known it was by Rowling, I would probably have felt more favourably about it, but by comparison to the spellbinding work she did with the Harry Potter, which draws you in and thrills like few other book series, it is clear that this book lacks the imagination of the former. I also found the excessive swearing and multiple references to exposed nipples and breasts a slightly annoying distraction from the storyline, which would have been improved by their removal, and perhaps a few less characters.

It feels a bit mean to be negative about what would have been an EXCELLENT debut novel, but the thing is, its not, its a novel by a debut author, but by the most famous and successful one in the entire world, who has an imagination the size of canada. And I found myself bored several times as I read through it. The Characters were the most interesting part, but I guessed who the murderer was long before the end of the book.
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on 8 June 2016
A common piece of advice to aspiring writers is to show not tell - this seems to have passed JR by as she showed and showed and then showed some more. The passages of description were turgid - the kind of descriptive blocks you would associate with a novice writer - which leaves you drowning in a sea of adjectives. She seems particularly fond of strings of adjectives where one would do. There is one unfortunate passage (page 186 if you really want to check) where every bit of dialogue is followed by an action of the speaker. Appallingly amateur. By and large the dialogue is far better and helps the story along, but the swearing and dialect just did not ring true. I just wonder if there was any editor other than the author. It struck me as a self conscious attempt to write for 'grown-ups' - and far removed from the Harry Potter books.

I did read it all within 24 hours as it was for a reading group, but was constantly aware of how many pages I had already read, and how many were therefore left - indicative of the reading of this book being more of a chore than a pleasure.
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VINE VOICEon 7 September 2013
What an absolute find! I downloaded the free sample and was so entranced that I bought the rest of the book right there on the tube into work. I am a fan of crime fiction anyway, so I guessed the content might well please. This novel is written in the classic style, a proper plot with real twists and turns, well-described characters and accurate research. The story follows a young secretary fresh from Yorkshire who arrives in London and is sent, by the Temp Agency, to a grotty Private Eye in a dingy office just off the Tottenham Court Road.

As a Londoner I can so relate to this scenario - at the same age and in the same place I was sent on so many assignments that turned out to be one nearly-broke man with a bird-cage lift to his office. The descriptions of London are wonderful to anyone who knows this city as it is, right now, recession, walking-wounded post Afghanistan, celebrity culture, paparazzi and all. Part of the joy of the book, for me, was the true to life locations and most of all the humour.

Absolutely hilarious descriptions of the Police Officers, the rag trade, the music business and the army. Rather more poignant examination of what it is to be homeless, bullied, wronged by the Press and abandoned by HM Armed Forces. 'Robert Galbraith' has used his experience of life, including some inside knowledge of the army, of celebrity culture and all the ins and outs of chauffeur-driven cars, security guards, journalists both honourable and dishonourable and newspapers who once made a killing out of tapping other people's phones. As for the final twist, well, no-one says it better than Alfred, Lord Tennyson.

This book is recognisably the first in a series, and as is so often the case with a series, I suspect the author will gain in assurance if there are more. It's also recognisably written by an author slightly new to adult fiction - but oh what a talented one! I really hope there are more Cormoran Strikes in the pot. For that reason, I give it a high five.
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I wasn't sure about reading this originally purely because I don't usually read detective/mystery stories. I usually get a bit bored with the slow running plot. I chose to read this in the end though because I loved Rowling's writing style and the way she weaves a good story. I am so glad I chose to read this!

Admittedly it is a bit slow in parts but it is very character driven rather than action driven. The fact that I predicted the killer did not detract any enjoyment from reading it (I have a sixth sense bout these kinds of things).

Mr Strike, though a bit annoying at times, really grew on me as a person. Yes, he's not always nice and isn't drop-dead gorgeous, but he's real, gritty and pretty awesome at times.

Robin I couldn't fault at all. She was independent, smart and could stand up for herself. I did not like her judgy fiance. He is an ass!

I found the plot, though quite slow, to be engaging and intelligent. Yes, there's a bad language, innuendo's etc so if you're easily offended then don't pick this up. If your going to compare to harry potter, then again, don't pick this up.

This is JK Rowling writing as Robert and for Adults, not children and teens. I liked this a lot and I will definitely be reading the other books in the series.
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on 4 November 2015
It's such a shame Mr Galbraith was unmasked so soon; it denied us the pleasure of discovering a brilliant new crime writer the good old fashioned way. I'm no fan of 'Sword and Sorcery' and had given 'Potter' a wide birth, sadly it also caused me to pass this book by for too long.

At its heart this is a great procedural that perfectly delivers the vicarious pleasure of working the clues alongside the protagonist; yet it is so much more than that. The prose contrives to be economic yet fulsome, the sense of place is unerring and the characters ring satisfyingly true.The London locations are beautifully evoked, bringing them vividly back to me, half a lifetime on from my 'London Years'. The humorously acerbic descriptions of characters from the worlds of media and the law are a joy. I have some small experience of both and they are note perfect.The whole experience was educational too, I learned three excellent new words and there is a forth that even defeated the Kindle dictionary!

Even if the author had not been revealed I think I might have guessed this was really Ms Galbraith, there is a discernible feminine touch to the writing; but forget all that, this is a brilliant book, it cost me two night's sleep and now I have two more to read! Don't make my mistake and pass this one by, it's far too great a pleasure to miss.
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on 6 May 2015
This was the introduction to Comoran Strike JK Rowling's private detective and his assistant Robin. They come together and attempt to solve a murder/ suicide case. The story is well written in every respect, grammar, facts, colour and mystery. JK has done a very good job on her first book and I immediately ordered the second in the series. It was good to remember the fine beer from Sharp'e brewery that I first tasted in Port Isaac, "Doombar", so i bought another case next day.

Robin Guy
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on 7 September 2017
There are several themes in this book, apart from the central plot of finding a murderer. The themes intertwine and the reader is kept in suspense until the final chapters. The characters are well drawn, with enough background information to make them believable. You have real empathy for Cormoran Strike - this is a real crime thriller.
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on 23 August 2017
I loved this book. Extremely well written, good characters, good plot, realistic locations - not going to mention the plot, don't want to spoil it for you. If the kids loved Harry Potter, adults will love Strike. J K has done it again. I'll be reading no 2, and no 3, et al with pleasure and anticipation
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