When a troubled model falls to her death from a snow-covered Mayfair balcony, it is assumed that she has committed suicide. However, her brother has his doubts, and calls in private investigator Cormoran Strike to look into the case. Strike is a war veteran - wounded both physically and psychologically - and his life is in disarray. The case gives him a financial lifeline, but it comes at a personal cost: the more he delves into the young model's complex world, the darker things get - and the closer he gets to terrible danger…
A gripping, elegant mystery steeped in the atmosphere of London - from the hushed streets of Mayfair to the backstreet pubs of the East End to the bustle of Soho - The Cuckoo's Calling is a remarkable book. Introducing Cormoran Strike, this is a classic crime novel in the tradition of P. D. James and Ruth Rendell, and marks the beginning of a unique series of mysteries.
Robert Glenister has performed with both the National Theatre and the RSC. He has worked extensively on radio and television and is probably best known for his roles as Ash Morgan in the BBC's Hustle and as the Home Secretary in 5 series of Spooks.
©2013 Robert Galbraith (P)2013 Hachette Digital
"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)
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"Entertaining and likeable"
I enjoyed this one. It's a good old-fashioned whodunnit with clues, red herrings, and a sensible resolution (not too far fetched, though maybe slightly predictable). There is generally a nice story about a PI and his PA, both of them interesting characters, though the male lead is done with more depth and conviction. The story deals with some dark themes both the murder itself and in the lives of the characters - but with humour and compassion, so that the mood in general is not excessively dark. There are silly moments and funny moments, and a gratifying sense of justice done at the end.
The writing is not very 'literary' but is thoughtful and interesting - the viewpoint of the quirky central character (the PI) is interesting: initially I did not expect to like this ex-military guy, but he turns out compassionate but unsentimental and he is a very agreeable personality to spend time with as the story goes on. The descriptions of places and action are good. I thought the reading was super, even the issue of female voices done by the male narrator (which is often difficult) was pretty well handled. The regional accents were nicely done and helpful in telling the characters apart.
I would for sure want to try future books by this author.
Well, with great timing, I had just finished this book and was telling people what an interesting story it was when we find out it's written by JK Rowling!
That aside, it is very well written and superbly read by Robert Glenister, handling the different accents with ease. The story is one that pans out quite nicely and I think you can see the ending coming but it doesn't detract from what is a very entertaining listen. The interplay between the major characters works very well for me and I am looking forward to a sequel.
Never having written a review before I felt compelled to do so in this case. Not only did I enjoy the well constructed narrative and characters thought that Robert Glenister's potrayal was superb. I felt as if I were watching a movie in my head and he seemed to be able to give the voices to each character just as I imagined. I shall certainly look for this author and the sublime Robert Glenister again when chosing from Audible.
"The Cuckoo's Calling"
I rarely add reviews but had to for this book! Once I started the book I was glued to my earphones completely. Brilliant 'who done it' with no lull points. The only downside is it finished and there isn't another in the series.... yet I hope!
A combination of great authorship and narration to bring a fabulous and tense story to life.
His outstanding performance really brought the characters to life. He didn't just read a book aloud he performed it with an excellent energy.
"Great Story, brilliantly told"
I couldn't put this one down and would highly recommend this to anyone. I am hoping that the author has written more though, at the time of writing this was the only book. Can we have some more please!!
"Intrigue, mystery and more please :)"
Very nicely crafted story from an eloquent and expressive writer. Much of the story is told through dialogue and the narrator, more of a voice actor, Robert Glenister, does a very fine job. Not just different accents but also a natural inflection to suit the emotion of the words. Very natural and I was transfixed and really cared about the main characters. I look forward to more about this character, by this author and read by this narrator. One word of warning: some of the London characters have a very colourful language and the use of profanity is frequent when these characters are talking.
Strike ia a Cornish ex-military policemen, based in London, at a very low point in his life, Strike is sinking fast. I loved his clever, sharp stubborn character, especially the prickly ebb and flow relationship with his quick witted sidekick secretary Robin.
The other plus me for for was the twisty, story line, I did not guess who did it at all! was rather shocked in the end but in a good way, having just read 2 out of three of the Larson Millennium Trilogy our author more than holds his own.
Wonderfully paced, lovable relateable characters, and a stonking good mystery whodunit...
"Oh, this is GOOD!"
I took a chance on this book based on some of the reviews and am very glad I did. The plot was satisfyingly complicated with several blind alleys and misdirection that kept me guessing till the end.
Galbraith's characterisation of his main protagonists is also very good. I found myself quickly sympathising with them and impatient to read more.
I thoroughly enjoyed Glenister's reading, the characters' voices are distinct and his pacing is excellent.
I'm really looking forward to the follow-up - I hope there's going to be one!
"Well done Galbraith/ Rowling"
I can understand JK Rowling's desire to be judged on the merits of her first foray into detective fiction, but it was not to be. Whoever wrote this book has created a pacy story that keeps one listening. I read a lot of detective fiction and think her story well-constructed with well-developed characters. She's used many of the stock features of this genre: the principle detective (in this case a private detective) coming into the story following a broken relationship with a past that has left him wounded emotionally and physically. Incessant references to smoking and drinking, probably realistic but a bit hackneyed. I maybe lead a sheltered life but do many people use the 'F' word so frequently as a noun, verb and adjective as in this book? Even the most foul-mouthed must be stretched to use it about half a dozen times in the one short sentence! Despite this I did enjoy the book. It may be presumptuous to give advice to such a prestigious writer, but I think using Latin aphorisms to introduce the different parts of the book struck me as pretentious in a detective novel and smacks of a writer feeling that the genre is below them and that they have to show their academic credentials. It's a very popular form and high quality writing adds greatly to the pleasure and JK Rowling writes well and I hope that she will write some more books featuring Cormoron Strike.
A great deal of credit is due to Robert Glenister who does a magnificent job of bringing the book alive.
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