4 star rating
The Cuckoo’s Calling
Cormoran Strike, Book #1
By Robert Galbraith
ISBN# 9780316206846
Author’s Website:

Brought to you by OBS reviewer Caro

Beware of Spoilers!


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 the acclaimed first crime novel by J.K. Rowling, writing under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith.


There are several mysteries to solve in The Cuckoo’s Calling. First, we have the mysterious death of famous super model Lula Laundry, who the media believe has committed suicide. Except her adopted brother, John Bristow, who is driven to commision and old family acquaintance, P.I. Cormoran Strike, to solve the mystery behind the Bristow’s beloved daughter’s tragic death.

Second, we have our resident P.I. Cormoran Strike, who has his own problems and depths to solve. At the beginning, he has only one client, an obsessed stalker, a secretary he can barely afford, and his girlfriend leaves him the same day Bristow gives him the assignment that can solve half of his financial issues. But, what is the mystery his own past holds? Well, it turns out that the intimidating, broad bodied P.I. has a rock star for a father.

And last, but not least, the most shocking mystery of all, the author. Once, first readers reached the end, reading the last pages, they were the lucky ones to learn that this new mystery book was written by none other than Harry Potter’s author, J.K. Rowling. Knowing this I can comfortably say that J.K. Rowling should definitely write more crime/mystery stories in the future.

I really enjoyed reading The Cuckoo’s Calling! J.K. Rowling is just not only good writing fantasy, she can also write an excellent crime story as well.  A good example, within her Harry Potter series, would be The Goblet of Fire. In my opinion, the fourth book had the most mystery plot to solve. I was sure it was someone else behind those murders.

Throughout The Cuckoo’s Calling the readers work to put the clues together as Strike learns new information about Lula, the model world, and the life at home she never became accustomed to. In addition, we also get to solve forgotten past crimes along with being intrigued by Srike’s life. One of my favorite characters was Strike’s temporary secretary, Robin, which I like to imagine that looks like actress Julia Stiles in the Bourne movies. She was efficiente, a quick thinker, and good at undercover missions. Best secretary of the year for her.

The only reason I’m not giving The Cuckoo’s Calling 5 stars is because of the killer. He/she was psychotic and looking for attention, but I would have prefered for someone else as the story’s bad character. I did, on the other hand, like Lula’s gang of friends. I definitely would have liked to know more of her while she was alive.

I can easily see this book being turned into a movie, but I wouldn’t want a sequel, unless it has an even better crime to solve. Overall, a great book to read cozily near the warmth of the fire in this cold weather.