17 September 2014

Review: THE SILKWORM, Robert Galbraith

  • published in 2014 by Speher
  • ISBN 978-1-4087-0403-5
  • #2 in the Cormoran Strike series
  • 455 pages
  • source: my local library
Synopsis (author website)



A compulsively readable crime novel with twists at every turn, The Silkworm is the second in the highly acclaimed series featuring Cormoran Strike and his determined young assistant Robin Ellacott.

When novelist Owen Quine goes missing, his wife calls in private detective Cormoran Strike. At first, she just thinks he has gone off by himself for a few days – as he has done before – and she wants Strike to find him and bring him home.

But as Strike investigates, it becomes clear that there is more to Quine’s disappearance than his wife realises. The novelist has just completed a manuscript featuring poisonous pen-portraits of almost everyone he knows. If the novel were published it would ruin lives – so there are a lot of people who might want to silence him.

And when Quine is found brutally murdered in bizarre circumstances, it becomes a race against time to understand the motivation of a ruthless killer, a killer unlike any he has encountered before…

My Take

I have previously read the first in this series, THE CUCKOO'S CALLING, and thoroughly enjoyed it. An ex-soldier, Cormoran Strike is a different sort of sleuth and he and his secretary/assistant Robin Ellacott make a good pair. Many of the themes/bylines that began in the first novel are continued and it will probably help a bit if you read them in order.

But to be honest I am a bit disappointed with THE SILKWORM. I thought it was a bit long and unnecessarily complex, particularly in the final explanations, almost as if the author wanted to keep the readers puzzled until the very end, and to be able to say with a flourish "There! You didn't guess that! Did you?"

Mind you, it is still a good read for the most part and you may not get as impatient as me for the ending to come.

My rating: 4.5

Read an extract on the novelist's website.

2 comments:

Margot Kinberg said...

Kerrie - Thanks as ever for your view. I haven't decided whether to read this one or not, to be honest, and part of the reason is exactly what you say - the length. I may read it at some point, but not at the moment...

Kathy D. said...

I read book one, not this one yet. I will. I thought The Cuckoo's Calling was unnecessarily detailed for a mystery, with a lot of nonessential descriptions.

It could have been edited down by 60 or so pages, maybe more.

That said, I liked it and I like Cormoran and Robin, their introspection, etc.

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