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review 2018-08-25 20:29
The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith
The Silkworm - Robert Galbraith

I continued my current crime reading escapade with the second book in Robert Galbraith’s (JK Rowling’s pseudonym) P.I series, featuring Cormoran Strike. I was warned it was a little graphic and it was, but I didn’t have any significant problems with it. If you plan to pick it up bear in mind that there are a few places where it’s a little gruesome.

 

At the beginning a novelist has gone missing, by the name of Owen Quine. I listened to the audio book towards the end and discovered I’d been mispronouncing Owen’s surname the whole way through. I was pronouncing it to rhyme with fin, like a fish would have, but apparently it’s pronounced to rhyme with fine. Is anyone else going huh? I was. Anyway, this novelist has gone missing and his wife employs Cormoran to find him. His receptionist and would be sleuth, Robin, also features heavily.

 

The novel is written in third person multiple, but the majority of the time we’re inside the mind of Strike and secondly Robin.

 

Strike, the estranged son of a famous rock star and is no fool (he went to Oxford University) and sees connections where the police don't and manages to solve a convoluted crime. As with the first book, I did think the perpetrator came totally out of left-field, but that’s far more preferable than an obvious ending.

 

The pacing and characterisation were excellent, as you would expect with JK Rowling. Cormoran and Robin both grew as individuals, their personal lives illustrating their individual capabilities.

 

The novel as a whole was more self-assured than the first, so I can’t wait to read the next instalment. Come on bingo! Just found out about the pre-read. I think I'll start the third book now! 

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review 2018-07-03 22:36
A very enjoyable read
The Silkworm - Robert Galbraith

It was with curiosity, fondness and indeed excitement that I commenced reading The Silkworm by JK Rowling  under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith. Cormoran Strike is not the conventional detective. He is a man not only shaped by his unusual upbringing (son of famous rock star Jonny Rokeby) but deeply affected by his experience in war torn Afghanistan which resulted in him not only saving the life of a close friend but also the loss of his leg. That injury serves as a constant and painful reminder of the futility of war and the source of all his nightmares. Strike is best described as an antihero and with his disability he does not conform to the public's perception of a Private Investigator. His drab office with a central metal staircase pays homage to the fictional Philip Marlowe and certain passages only add to that illusion...."The geometrically perfect steel-grey bob, a black suit of severe cut and a slash of crimson lipstick gave her a certain dash. She emanated that aura of grandeur that replaces sexual allure in the successful older woman"......His young assistant Robin adds perception and glamour under the watchful eye of jealous boyfriend Matthew.

 

The novelist Owen Quine has been missing for 10 days and his wife Leonora has employed the services of Strike to find him. Quine has written a soon to be published bitter and twisted novel that depicts his acquaintances as grotesque caricatures. If such a novel was brought to the attention of an adoring public the lives of many would be sullied and ruined. So when the badly decomposed body of the author, minus his intestines, is discovered the list of potential perpetrators would be the envy of an Agatha Christie novel!

 

Although the story at its best is a good police procedural the attention and sympathy of the reader is directed towards the flawed character of Cormoran Strike. Here is a PI who must hobble around the snowy, wintry streets of London on an ill fitting prosthetic. You can almost feel the pain and frustration of a driven individual (fuelled by copious amounts of his favourite tipple Doom Bar) hampered by his own inadequacies and relying totally on his glamorous, intelligent assistant Robin who will undoubtedly play a more important role as the later stories develop... An accomplished second book in the series with some astute observations...."We are mammals who need sex, need companionship, who seek the protective enclave of the family for reasons of survival and reproduction. We select a so-called loved one for the most primitive of reasons"...I look forward to reading the rest in the series.

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review SPOILER ALERT! 2018-04-04 13:20
Jacobean Revenge Tragedy Has Got Nothing on This
The Silkworm - Robert Galbraith,Robert Glenister

Jesus H. Christ, where did that come from???   Oh man, talk about "leagues from Harry Potter" ... more like, in a different galaxy.  And I mean content-, not quality-wise.

 

It's no coincidence that every single chapter of this book is prefaced by a quote from a different 16th / 17th century revenge tragedy: This is not a book for the faint of heart, dealing as it does with

(1) a seriously twisted, depraved book [whose content is laid out in some detail] and (2) that book's author, who weeks after having disappeared is found murdered, with his now rotting corpse having been made the sick centerpiece of a [graphically described] scene that exactly replicates the end of his final book.

(spoiler show)

I have to confess it was at this point that I almost stopped listening, and it was only the author's s skill as a writer that pulled me back into the story and made me care about what happened next at all.

 

In terms of the technique(s) of crime writing and character development, this is even better than the first Cormoran Strike novel, The Cuckoo's Calling; and I admit one other factor that kept me glued to the book until the end was the very skillfully unraveled backstory of Strike and his ex-fiancée Charlotte, or rather, their final breakup.  If there had been one thing that had left me mildly unsatisfied at the end of the first book, it was not having learned what precisely was behind Charlotte's explosive exit from Strike's office, with which the first book opens, and the specific reason for which -- and the reason for their final dispute and breakup -- was at best hinted at in book 1.  Well, curiosity satisfied now, and boy is it ever. -- Now if Robin would finally get rid of Michael ... (That being said, I'm not sure I want Strike to be her next boyfriend, even though that seems to be where we are headed.  They work increasingly well together as a team, but Strike is carrying a heck of a lot of baggage, and I'm not sure at all that their professional relationship would benefit from a change of dynamics that would bring all of that baggage AND emotions into the mix as well.)

 

So, 4 stars with a golden ribbon on top for the writing and character development (not only of Strike and Robin, but also of this story's supporting cast of murder suspects and their respective entourage), and extra kudo points for the sheer chutzpah of ditching every last expectation that readers coming to this book straight from Harry Potter might be bringing, and for taking a full-blown, unflinching dive in the opposite direction instead.  That self-same latter dive is, however, also the reason why I'm subtracting a half star from my overall rating.  It's going to take some time and a considerable amount of mind bleach to rid my brain of the images

of that murder scene ... and the imagery of the [fictional] book inspiring it.

(spoiler show)
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review SPOILER ALERT! 2018-03-19 13:47
Strike helped find a missing person and solved a murder
The Silkworm - Robert Galbraith

Carmoran Strike is more caring than he admit to himself. He taken up this case because the woman really need help.

 

The husband has gone missing, and this is not the first time. Owen, the writer, was a self-obsessed jerk. He did this disappearing act for attention and hope to get publicity. 

 

Now he was found dead. Who killed this person?

 

The detective who is on this case is a friend of Strike. More than friend as Strike has saved his life. 

 

The way the backstory given Strike a bit more dimension, or how he interacted with other characters. 

 

Also, the story involved his younger brother Al. Al is a rich kid being the son of a rock star. He wanted to stay connected to his brother. 

 

Robin is also better as a character. She really wants to be a detective in training. She had advanced driver training and has saved Strike and herself from a car accident. 

 

Really like the bit about Strike giving remarks on how pretty Robin is, how she needs to disguise herself. 


Matthew is loved by Robin and just not that likable, selfish bastard. 

 

He didn't like Robin to have this job and he dislike Strike. 

 

The story itself has some twists and turns. Keep the readers guessing. Good detective book. 

 

Really enjoyed this. 5 stars work. 

 

 

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text 2018-03-17 08:23
Reading progress update: I've read 320 out of 592 pages.
The Silkworm - Robert Galbraith

Strike investigating, first a disapparence, then a murder. 

 

The side story is actually a background story about his past ans how he lost his leg, and how he saved someone life. 

 

His disability is limiting him  in way that is frustrating. He has to drive automatic as his knee is injured and he is in pain. 

 

Robin offered to drive him and he finally taken up her offer. The driving itself is a turning point for Strike to put even more trust into her. She had advanced driving skill. 

 

Cool. Enjoying this. 

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