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The Cuckoo's Calling Audiobook

The Cuckoo's Calling: Cormoran Strike, Book 1

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Publisher's Summary

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

What the Critics Say

"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)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.4 (537 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Jane 07-29-13
    Jane 07-29-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Hopefully this is the first of a series"

    Surely the sign of a really good book is when the last words have been spoken and listeners find themselves disappointed at having been abruptly separated from people and events that have been a real part of their lives (in this case for nearly16 hours). Well, if that is the case then this qualifies as a Really Good Book -- it ticks all the boxes.

    The narrator: great voice, acted out the roles very convincingly (change of accents and voices very well done) and, best of all, didn't differentiate male and females voices through changing pitch. The writing was vivid. Elegant and succinct prose endowed each sentence an energy which created settings and personal characteristics.

    While this was a crime mystery, that was only part of it. In fact, despite the urgency of the plot, for me the people became the most interesting aspect because The Cuckoo's Calling (clever title) was also the story of the lives of many individuals. Cormoran Strike, for example, is the detective, but he has his own compelling story which entwines throughout the central plot. I found myself caring about his well-being along with the decisions that Robyn will make about her life direction, and I was also repelled by, or drawn to the many other characters that moved in and out of my life through this book.

    I had not read any of J K Rowling (Robert Galbraith) before but this book demonstrates what a talented writer she is and why she has been so very successful. I hope this is the beginning of a series.

    9 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Anonymous 07-26-13
    07-26-13 Member Since 2010
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    "Really pleasing mystery"

    I hope that JK Rowling's outing as the author of this novel doesn't discourage her from publishing any followups, because I really enjoyed it.

    The style is very paced. It is a mystery that slowly unfolds, with no car chases, or mad escapes against the odds, just a pair of intelligent, observant people making steady progress towards solving a mystery.

    The dialogue is engaging, and the reader (Robert Glenister) does a fantastic job with the voice characterisations. I only lost track of the characters (and there is quite a large cast) one time.

    I liked how the scenes were painted in the mind's eye. You could feel the light in the room, or hear the sounds of distant children playing. It was literature written with a painter's eye.

    The resolution is satisfyingly twisty, you will likely deduce some or most of the story, but probably not all of it.

    A couple of minor issues:

    The police characters were caricatures of ineptitude, and a little unbelievable. The quantity of swearing from some characters was a bit distracting though again, the narrator does a great job. Otherwise a very fun read, and I look forward to more in the same vein.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Deb West Pennant Hills, Australia 07-22-13
    Deb West Pennant Hills, Australia 07-22-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Wow What a Story"
    Would you listen to The Cuckoo's Calling again? Why?

    I am getting ready to listen to this book again and I have only just finished it.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Cuckoo's Calling?

    The way this book has been structured there isn't one moment that isn't memorable


    What about Robert Glenister’s performance did you like?

    Robert Glenister gives a superb performance of this book. He is now my second favourite reader on Audible.com


    If you could take any character from The Cuckoo's Calling out to dinner, who would it be and why?

    Definitely Robyn and Cormoran Strike.


    Any additional comments?

    I am aware who has written this book under a different name now and I am absolutely of the opinion that the books to come from this series, and I hope there will be more, will be as much awaited as those this writer has penned before. With the exception of the last book under the writer's real name that I didn't enjoy. I don't want to spoil it for those who don't know who it is but there is so much detail in The Cuckoos Calling combined with the research and style in which the book is written makes it impossible to put it down. I can't wait for more to come.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    helen melbourne, Australia 07-20-13
    helen melbourne, Australia 07-20-13 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "May Cormoran Strike Again!"
    What made the experience of listening to The Cuckoo's Calling the most enjoyable?

    Though this book didn't have the blood and gore of many mystery fiction available today I found this book fascinating and compelling to listen to, it was well written, beautifully described so that many of the images related to by the author were very vivid in my mind's eye. I have to say that I couldn't put it down, as my wardrobe, my bedroom drawers are now perfectly tidy and sorted because I wanted to know "who dunnit". I hope to hear from this author again. May Cormoran Strike like lightening again!


    Which character – as performed by Robert Glenister – was your favorite?

    Cormoran himself, his big bulky and affable (in his own way) nature became very endearing as the story unfolded.


    If you could take any character from The Cuckoo's Calling out to dinner, who would it be and why?

    Cormoran and his delightful secretary - just so I too could pretend to take notes and hang on their every word.


    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lia Sutton, Australia 11-29-14
    Lia Sutton, Australia 11-29-14 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Very Good Book But A Bit Drawn Out."

    I must admit I bought this book when I learned that J.K. Rowlings wrote it. I wanted to see how she would write a mystery. I have to also admit that I have never listened any of her books and I was buying on her amazing reputation. With that said, I really liked the book, but did not love it.

    What I loved about it.
    * Fantastic job on character development (but would you think anything less?) I got to know and love Strike and Robin right from the beginning and warmed up to all the other cast very shortly.
    * The story was a good mystery.
    * I liked that the ending gave way to a sequel to this book as I am interested where Strike's business and personal life take him.
    * I loved Strike's crazy ex girlfriend and hope to see/hear more of her in future books as she was just briefly mentioned in the beginning and snippets throughout the book.

    What I didn't....
    *The book was OVERLY long. At almost 16 hours it dragged at times. She is an amazing descriptive writer but at times it just went on and on and I just wanted her to get on with it.
    * As in the above sentence, it took ages, sometimes chapters to wrap up a small part of the story line. Perhaps I like books that move faster.
    Having said that I still could not put the book down despite some frustrations.

    All in all a good solid listen and something you would expect from this caliber of writer. I looking forward to the next installment of the series.

    Robert Glenister was fantastic with the delivery of the story.
    Worth a credit, very much yes from me.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lorna Johannesburg, South Africa 08-05-13
    Lorna Johannesburg, South Africa 08-05-13 Member Since 2010
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    "Brilliant and gripping!"

    I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It was thrilling and gripping and kept me captivated for the full length of the story. robert Glenister narrates beautifuly and his tones, accents and portrayal of women's voices was very good.

    The overall story was exciting and plausible and was a really good detective story.
    Worth the read!

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Anonymous 07-28-13
    07-28-13
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    "Excellent Read Great Story"
    Would you listen to The Cuckoo's Calling again? Why?

    Wow I have finished the book and feel a little sad. The story kept me guessing right to the end. Robert Glenister told the story so well and made the characters come alive. I cannot wait for the next in in the series J K.( Robert) please hurry!!


    Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

    Yes it did I could not guess what had happened and loved the characters each giving their version of the other characters and events


    Which character – as performed by Robert Glenister – was your favorite?

    Strike himself!! He is such a well drawn character and the author has a wonderfuk creation here and can develop him as the series progresses.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Kept me on the edge of my seat if that is possible when you are walking


    Any additional comments?

    Next Book Please

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dona Hamilton, Australia 08-01-13
    Dona Hamilton, Australia 08-01-13 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A New Detective Series to Read"

    I can understand why JK decided to write it under a pseudo name, but if I hadn't known it was her I probably wouldn't have picked it up for quite awhile, but I am glad that I did! I really enjoyed it and look forward to more in the series. It kept me guessing and wondering all the time.

    I would have given it 5 stars all around, except for the language. Although it was used in context of the characters, because I don't speak like that, it could be a bit jarring at times.Thankfully it wasn't over the top or used excessively. (And Strike even apologizes for it! :-) )

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Captain Skurvy Queensland, Australia 07-26-13
    Captain Skurvy Queensland, Australia 07-26-13 Listener Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Excelent Narration . . Profanity may put off some"

    The narrator does an excellent job and i would like to listen to more of his work. from what i understand he has been involved in TV shows, radio dramas, and audio drama to note just a few.

    I found Cormoran Strike to be too self absorbed and overall not a pleasant character where as his new temp is a much more engrossing. That said the characters are on the whole well rounded. but in the most cases extremes of their particular niche in society as portrayed in this novel

    The story reallies heavily on incidents in just about every major characters life that just all happen to occur at the same time thus causing guilty and innocent alike to cover for one another on the same evening a model dies.

    Also Robert Galbraith aka J. K. Rowling appears to think that an excessive use of the "F" word etc needs be be used in abundance to ensure that this is taken as an Adult style book. In some areas of the book it is inserted between just about every second word. I felt it was used in excess. But I guess it ensures it wont been seen on shelves next to Mr Potter :)

    I don't think that Robert Galbraith aka J. K. Rowling has much affinity for the Paparazzi or the news media in general by the way they portrayed in this novel . . . not that i disagree

    Overall the book is a decent read but the excessive use of profanity might put some people off. The story also reallies of to much coincidence to make it a really great plot . . .

    I would still recommend this given the disclaimers above

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Shom Hyderabad, India 08-06-13
    Shom Hyderabad, India 08-06-13 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great job!Let's have a Cormoran Strike series now!"

    I am a fanboy, so let me get done with the gushing first. JKR is such a legend! Love her!
    Ok, let's talk about the book now. Ms. Rowling has an incredible ability of putting word after word, and making you look forward to the next word. A natural-born story-teller to compare with the very best. Even while reading the Potter novels, I had always thought that mystery would be her natural habitat, she is so brilliant and ingenuous at plot and storytelling. And this here is a proof. Does it hurtle through like, say, a Lee Child novel? Nope, the story builds up gradually -- this is a classic detection novel, the thrill is secondary to the detection -- but it is still effective, you can still not put the book down. I couldn't.

    Characters: Cormoran Strike and Robin Ellacott are both such interesting characters! I'd very much like this book to be Cormoran Strike #1, a part of a long series.

    Writing: there's craft here. The characters are almost uniformly well-developed (as you have come to expect from JKR), the sexual tension between characters is brought out really well (without being explicit -- this is JKR, folks. She is a children's writer, remember?), and it is well-researched, again another JKR trait.

    And okay then, let's have the acid test for all private-eye books --- Could I guess the killer? Nope. Not till the very end I couldn't.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Sort by:
  • Miss
    Saffron Walden, United Kingdom
    5/31/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Keep an open mind!"

    Don't be put off by the fact J K Rowling wrote this (and the excellent follow ups). I've never read a jot of Harry Potter, and didn't like The Casual Vacancy, but this book is excellent. Really good plot, enough character but not too much to get in the way, a good paced slow building tension and great denouement. The narrator is excellent.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Andy
    1/21/16
    Overall
    Performance
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    "Hooked from the off"
    What did you like most about The Cuckoo's Calling?

    The quality of the characterisation is amplified by the quality of Robert Glanister's narration. So many characters, superbly brought to life by Glannister. Made for TV, with the said narrator in the leading role


    What other book might you compare The Cuckoo's Calling to, and why?

    Not sure. It's a detective crime thriller and I'd say it should compare or exceed many similar books, but I can't say I've read/heard one to make such a comparison.


    What does Robert Glenister bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

    Pretty much covered, other than to add that he has audible abilities that are hard to beat


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    No. I never do. Leaves you wanting for me if broken in to hourly slots.


    Any additional comments?

    I'll ourchase Robert Galbraith's other crime thrillers in this series. Recommend you do the same, you won't be sorry.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Crime Fiction Groupie
    High Wycombe, United Kingdom
    1/20/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Fantastic - loved it!!"

    Have been meaning to listen/read one of the Strike novels for ages, and this finally got to the top of the list. Well - why have I been procrastinating. I absolutely LOVED this. The story was excellent, and I love Strike and Robin's characters. The rest of the cast were well described, and as others have said, you have to be alert for all sorts of useful information not necessarily signalled as such! Loved it so much, have immediately bought the next two books, and am half-way through #2. Superb series.

    And Robert Glenister - what can I say. I did not realise it was him reading it when I bought the book. After the first session of listening, when I kept thinking 'this guy sounds like Robert Glenister when he was reading the early Billingham Tom Thorne books'..... I was delighted to see I was spot on. I could listen to RG until the proverbial cows come home. And I was really impressed at the breadth of his performance across so many diverse characters. He really is a superstar, and I hope that they manage to keep him for all future performances (I still hanker after him on the Thorne books!).

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Janet Hughes
    1/10/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "stunning"

    I really enjoyed Cuckoos Calling. It's kept me entertained through various tedious journeys. Going to get the next one.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Po Stoneman
    uk
    10/21/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Excellent "

    Everything about this audiobook was brilliant! Story captured me straight from the first line. X

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Anne
    10/11/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "very highly recommended "

    A really great story, interesting main characters and exciting plot. I highly recommend this book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Mr J Griffiths
    10/11/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Superb"

    Great characters, very well plotted with a very surprising and satisfying ending, and a superlative reading

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • bex
    10/10/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "great who-done-it"

    superbly read. listened to this twice and thoroughly enjoyed it both times. Robert is such a fantastic author isn't she. I've improved my vocabulary too. I was laughing out loud many times.thank you. can't wait for no. 4

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • p.c.
    10/8/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Enfolding and gripping "

    Enjoyed all aspects of this book, sad it's finished, glad there is a second book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Alex
    10/2/17
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Amazing"

    I loved it. I saw the TV series first and thought, wow, I should definitely get that - it did not disappoint.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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