“When a troubled model falls to her death from a snow-covered Mayfair balcony, it is assumed that she has committed suicide. However, her brother has his doubts, and calls in private investigator Cormoran Strike to look into the case.
Strike is a war veteran – wounded both physically and psychologically – and his life is in disarray. The case gives him a financial lifeline, but it comes at a personal cost: the more he delves into the young model’s complex world, the darker things get – and the closer he gets to terrible danger . . .”
The Cuckoo’s Calling is the first book in the Cormoran Strike series. It was published on 4th April 2013 by Sphere Books (Little, Brown & Company) under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith, who was later revealed to be J.K. Rowling, author of the Harry Potter series.
The book had already been turned down by numerous publishers before it was accepted by Sphere Books, which had previously published her book The Casual Vacancy. Here’s a photo of two of the rejection letters that Rowling posted on Twitter:
According to Rowling, she stuck the rejection letters on her wall for motivation.
It had been a rumour for a few years that J.K. Rowling was writing a crime novel (Ian Rankin helped spread that rumour by saying that he thought the Harry Potter books are whodunnits). However, with intentions of publishing it under a pseudonym, she kept it a secret. Before the big reveal, the book sold 1,500 physical copies, plus 7,000 ebooks, audiobooks and library copies. The book also received great reviews from authors like Val McDermid. Sales obviously spiked after the author was revealed to be J.K. Rowling on 14th July 2013, moving to its spot as a best-selling novel on Amazon.
Here’s what J.K. Rowling had to say about her experience of writing under a pseudonym: “Being Robert Galbraith has been such a liberating experience.… It has been wonderful to publish without hype and expectation and pure pleasure to get feedback under a different name.” She also said that she would have liked to have remained anonymous for at least three books, but she had also not expected to have managed it for so long.
All author royalties for The Cuckoo’s Calling go to The Soldiers’ Charity. Here’s a link to their website.
You can explore the details of The Cuckoo’s Calling via the links below:
Read about the second book, The Silkworm, here.
Read about the third book, Career of Evil, here.