The Cuckoo's Calling - Robert Galbraith aka J K Rowling

17 January 2018

I read The Cookoo's Calling in all ignorance of the authentic authorship of this book and therefore my enjoyment of the story was not at all influenced by the fame of J K Rowling.  Nor am I particularly fond of the crime genre so the only real influence I had in picking this up before my summer holidays was the limited time I had for choosing before my flight departure; seeking escapism into a world I didn't know. I didnt expect the thunderstorms but that is a different story than the strike novels.

Cormoran Strike is a private investigator struggling to get sufficient clients to cover his costs, when along comes a wealthy client, John Bristow who wants him to investigate the death of his adoptive sister, the model Lulu Landry, who had died in a fall three months earlier and who Bristow believes was killed. Other key characters are Robin Ellacott, a soon to be married office temp who is fascinated by the work, she is undertaking for Strike, even if there are doubts about whether he can afford to pay her for it. Lulu's mother, Lady Yvette Bristow, who is terminally ill with uterine cancer and is doted on by her son but had a more difficult relationship with her now dead daughter Lulu.
The novel is captivating and turned out to be exactly what I needed for my lazing in the sun mindset. But it did make me wonder why J K Rowling didn't want the story attributing to her and why she chose a male pseudonym?  In fact it is even more fascinating to know that one publisher, Orion Books declined it, which is great news for you aspiring writers. Even the best get rejected! Only 1500 books were created in the first print run. If you bought one, and I didn't, you could expect it to sell in excess of £3000 today. 
It appears Rowling didn't want the pressure of producing a crime novel with her authorship known as she believed this would raise expectations. As it was relatively slow in sales before her authorship was revealed, evidently she was right, but subsequently the reviews have largely been favourable. 
As for understanding the gender choice of her pseudonym, I can only surmise this was to remove speculation surrounding her plans to write a crime novel, because these were initially leaked. Perhaps she felt the material relating to Strikes military background – he had served and been wounded with a permanent disability – may have been more plausible form a male author? Maybe a female pseudonym would have given the game away considering the amount of speculation that Rowling's attempts in the crime genre was generating at the time of publication. 
Subsequently she has produced two further novels creating a Cormoran Strike trilogy – which I haven't read as yet but intend to download to kindle for some 'keep warm under the duvet' reading. She ( JK Rowling), or should I say he ( Robert Galbraith) delivered 'The Silkwork' in 2014 and 'Career of Evil' in 2015.
To compare the book prices of The Cuckoo's Calling – follow the link, It is also a TV drama and it is possible to compare prices of the Cuckoo's Calling DVD by following the link.
To compare the book prices of The Silkworm follow the link
To compare prices book  of Career of Evil – follow the link