A couple of years ago, I reviewed Robert Galbraith’s debut novel The Cuckoo’s Calling, followed by The Silkworm. This year, I rounded out the trilogy by reading Career of Evil. The J.K. Rowling (under a pen-name) series of mysteries, geared towards an adult audience, never fails to satisfy. Admittedly, the first two novels surprised me more than Career of Evil— I didn’t know what to expect for The Cukoo’s Calling, and The Silkworm intriguing and gruesome in a way that I found unexpected for Rowling.
Nonetheless, I was committed enough to the series (and, perhaps more importantly, the characters) to finish it out. Rowling shines in long-form– it’s near universally acknowledged that she is gifted when it comes to series. The Cormoran Strike novels are no exception. The first two novels had cleverly laid plots, with shocking twists. While Career of Evil was anything but predictable, its path was perhaps more clearly laid than the first two. From the beginning of Career of Evil, there are three primary suspects; while in the other two novel sin the series, the suspect pool is broader. I anticipated that Rowling (Galbraith) would stray further from the initial suspects, but the novel follows that plot all the way through.
In this novel, Strike (our star detective himself) is targeted, when his assistant Robin receives a severed leg in the mail. While he is struggling to keep his P.I. business afloat, he also must get to the bottom of the threat against his friend.
Of course, anybody who has read the first two novels knows that certain plot elements (the undefined relationship between Robin and her husband, as well as Robin and Strike) remain unsettled. Rowling uses the third novel to assuage our curiosity on the matter. While perhaps not her greatest work, and admittedly not my favorite book of the series, I enjoyed turning the pages of Career of Evil and was happy to finish the series.
What are your favorite mysteries? I’m enjoying thrillers more and more each year, though I don’t like anything too scary. Be sure to follow me on Bloglovin’ and Instagram.