The prologue ensues a possible suicide which is being investigated by the police and has the media and paparazzi in a frenzy. With that being said, no mention of the person is given except that it’s a woman which creates an unmistakable mystery around the subject and sets the storyline in place.
The book starts off with Robin, a temporary receptionist making her way to her newest job, where she collides unknowingly with her boss who happens to save her from a tumulus three storey fall. The unexpected arrival of Robin, takes Cormoran by surprise as he is just recuperating from his recent yet devastating love life. Mr. Cormoran Strike, an ex-army official, ex-SIB, illegitimate child of a famous rock star and most commonly known as a private detective. Strike, laden with debt and no means of business is utterly surprised when he’s got a new client Mr. John Bristow, asking him to reinvestigate the death of his famous sister Ms. Lula Landry.
What follows next is a series of questions, interviews, telephone calls and inquiries with people that revolve around Lula in order to unmask the murderer. To the curious mind, it is a nail biting mystery that has everyone on the edge of their seats trying to rule out suspects, check alibis and provide proofs. While hunting for clues, it is easily seen that Strike is good at what he does with several instances that claims he already knows who the killer is. On the other hand, we, just like Robin, his temp, who later becomes his permanent lookout, are fascinated by the story that unfolds. Robin proves to be a great asset to Strike, who uncovers many details herself and is the constant support that Strike needs throughout the story.
The undeniable professional chemistry between Strike and Robin proves not only of a perfect team but also the compassionate bond between the two that forms overtime. The end, however, is not as mysterious as it seems with a low blow to the suspense. The lead up to the unmasking of the killer is quite predictable but the way in which the clues have been lead is truly interesting.
In a nutshell, The Cuckoo’s calling is a really great murder mystery that enraptures the reader to the ambiguity around Lula’s death and allows the reader to be a part of the detective’s surroundings with well written dialogues, scenes and a thrilling plotline. If you’re a person who enjoys reading crime fiction, then this is the book for you. Try not to read the ending first, as the build-up is the best part of the story!
Robert Gailbraith is a pseudonym used by the author which reinstates the mystery around the book. This book is the first in the series featuring Cormoran Strike followed by two other books. In 2014, these novels were adapted into television series on BBC One, starring Tom Burke as Detective Strike.