Wednesday, February 25, 2015

The Silkworm -- Robert Galbraith (J. K. Rowling)

Cormoran Strike, private-eye, is back for his second fictional adventure, and this time it involves a particularly bizarre murder in which an author, Owen Quine, is disemboweled.  His acid-drenched body is then posed on a dinner table, surrounded by place settings for seven.  This happens to duplicate the final scene in the manuscript of what is purportedly Quine's latest novel, Bombix Mori (translation: The Silkworm).  

Galbraith/Rowling has a lot of unseemly fun in this book writing and making nasty comments about authors (both self- and traditionally published), agents, books, and the publishing world.  That kind of thing is irresistible to me, so I enjoyed reading the book.  But be warned.  It's 450 pages long, and it's the kind of case that Strike solves on about page 365, with the rest of the book being taken up with his complicated maneuvers to get some proof to back up his theory and then with his lengthy explanation of everything.  The reader is kept in the dark about most of what's going on, of course, until the end.

A couple of words about the writing.  People who object to point-of-view hopping are going to be driving nuts by this one, since the sometimes PoV changes not just on one page but sometimes from one paragraph to the next.  It doesn't happen all the time, just often enough for me to notice.  The thing is, as I might have said before, I'm not really bothered by it.  Others, I know, are.  I mentioned that the book was long, so people who don't like a lot of description and rumination should look elsewhere for their fun.  As for me, I liked it all well enough to consider reading another in the series especially if, as in this case, someone drops by with the book and hands it to me. 


Steve Oerkfitz said...

I have read both books in the series and enjoyed both. I read the first before it was revealed Rowling was the author. I got it on the basis of a good review on the Rap Sheet.

Jeff Meyerson said...

I started the first but gave up after less than 100 pages. It wasn't engaging me enough to go 450 pages.


Gerard said...

My wife said she enjoyed the audio versions of both novels.

George said...

It's good to see J. K. Rowling being successful...again.