Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Career of Evil - Robert Galbraith

Career of Evil
Title: Career of Evil
Author: Robert Galbraith (J. K. Rowling)
Publication Date: 10/20/15
Pages: 492
Genre: Thriller / Fiction
How I Found It: I've been reading through this series
Date Completed: 1/26/17

Summary: Cormoran Strike and Robin Ellacott find themselves embroiled in another ghastly case. This time, though, they seem to be the hunted, rather than the hunters.

What I Thought: As I have said in the past, I am normally not a huge fan of detective novels. I often find them formulaic and focused more on shock-and-awe rather than substance or character development. It continues to be no surprise that J. K. Rowling (writing under the name Robert Galbraith) reverses that trend.

The Cormoran Strike series features Rowling's typical attention to detail and insight into human emotion and action. Her characters are so alive and so complex. In this book particular, I was quite struck by how she uses the smallest moments, gestures, words to advance not only her plot, but her character development. She did this so well in the Harry Potter books as well, so it's not surprising to see her carry that masterful technique over. Still, that sort of work is so rare in writing, much less this genre that it's a real treat.

I mentioned when reviewing book two of this series, The Silkworm, that I enjoyed Rowling's deepening of the love triangle between Robin, Strike, and Matthew. Things progress even further here and I loved it. It's a compelling story line and kept me guessing just as much as the mystery. The ending (which I won't spoil) was awesome an I just cannot wait to see where Rowling takes things in book four. She has certainly set us Robin-Strike shippers up for a wild ride. 

As to the mystery itself, I found this one marginally less interesting than the cases in the previous books. It was a good change to have the violence directed at the agency and it allowed for more focus on Robin's character and personal life, but I think it will be nice to see the duo back at a more "normal" case again in the next book. I like them playing offense rather than defense. 

As expected, this is a great read. It's thrilling and fast-paced and marvelously character driven in the midst of the action. It's an adult read, for sure. Language and violence abound, but they are never out of place or just for drama; it's all very true to the situation and culture. You could certainly pick this up as a stand alone, but I'd recommend starting with book one, The Cuckoo's Calling, and enjoying the whole Cormoran Strike journey.

Rating: ★★★★☆
Will I Re-Read: No, but I'm dying to read the next one!
If You Liked This, Try: The Girl on the Train / Black Chalk Eeny Meeny
Other Books By J. K. Rowling: The Harry Potter series / The Casual Vacancy The Cuckoo's Calling The Silkworm

A Reduced Review: As expected, the third Cormoran Strike novel is great. It's thrilling and fast-paced and marvelously character driven in the midst of the action. 

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