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The Silkworm
Cover of The Silkworm
The Silkworm
Cormoran Strike Series, Book 2

Private investigator Cormoran Strike returns in a new mystery from Robert Galbraith, author of the #1 international bestseller The Cuckoo's Calling.

When novelist Owen Quine goes missing, his wife calls in private detective Cormoran Strike. At first, Mrs. Quine just thinks her husband 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 realizes. The novelist has just completed a manuscript featuring poisonous pen-portraits of almost everyone he knows. If the novel were to be published, it would ruin lives—meaning that there are a lot of people who might want him silenced.

When Quine is found brutally murdered under bizarre circumstances, it becomes a race against time to understand the motivation of a ruthless killer, a killer unlike any Strike has encountered before...

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.

Private investigator Cormoran Strike returns in a new mystery from Robert Galbraith, author of the #1 international bestseller The Cuckoo's Calling.

When novelist Owen Quine goes missing, his wife calls in private detective Cormoran Strike. At first, Mrs. Quine just thinks her husband 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 realizes. The novelist has just completed a manuscript featuring poisonous pen-portraits of almost everyone he knows. If the novel were to be published, it would ruin lives—meaning that there are a lot of people who might want him silenced.

When Quine is found brutally murdered under bizarre circumstances, it becomes a race against time to understand the motivation of a ruthless killer, a killer unlike any Strike has encountered before...

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.

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Subjects-
Languages:-
Copies-
  • Available:
    0
  • Library copies:
    1
Levels-
  • ATOS:
    6.9
  • Lexile:
  • Interest Level:
    UG
  • Text Difficulty:
    5

Recommended for you

 
Awards-
About the Author-
  • Robert Galbraith is a pseudonym for J.K. Rowling, author of the Harry Potter series and The Casual Vacancy.
Reviews-
  • Publisher's Weekly

    Starred review from June 23, 2014
    J.K. Rowling, under her Galbraith pseudonym, again demonstrates her adroitness at crafting a classic fair-play whodunit in a contemporary setting, peopled with fully realized primary and secondary characters. PI Cormoran Strike, who debuted in 2013's The Cuckoo's Calling, has had a professional renaissance after his success in that book. To spite an uppity client, he accepts Leonora Quine's request to trace her missing husband, novelist Owen Quine. Leonora is pretty sure that Owen is at a writer's retreat, but has hit a dead end trying to get its address. Meanwhile, someone is following Leonora, and excrement is being shoved through her mail slot. Strike begins his search in London's literary circles, aided by his resourceful assistant, Robin Ellacott. He eventually finds a horrifically mutilated Owen, who was killed in a manner apparently copied from a controversial unpublished manuscript. The evolving relationship between Strike and Robin, whose fiancé objects to her choice of work, is realistically portrayed, and Golden Age fans will be delighted by passages that could have been written by John Dickson Carr (e.g., "Turning up his coat collar Strike thought he knew, now, what the meaning was: of a dwarf in a bloody bag, of the horns under the Cutter's cap and, cruelest of all, the attempted drowning"). Agent: Neil Blair, the Blair Partnership (U.K.).

  • Publisher's Weekly

    September 1, 2014
    Once again writing under the pseudonym Galbraith, J.K. Rowling begins her new fair-play whodunit a few months after the conclusion of The Cuckoo’s Calling (2013). Here, London private eye Comoran Strike and his almost aggressively efficient assistant, Robin Ellacott, are searching for the murderer of novelist Owen Quine, the author of a scurrilous roman à clef certain to damage the careers of an assortment of publishing power players if printed. Popular British actor Glenister (MI-5, Hustle) takes on a highly-charged crime puzzle, peopled by a panoply of mainly vile suspects as well as a totally engaging pair of detectives. Matching Rowling’s praiseworthy ear for dialogue, he catches the subtleties—a touch of snark in cocktail party chatter, the arrogance in the voice of the overprivileged, the fear almost hidden in the raspy croak of a chain-smoking literary agent. His Strike shifts from a weary attitude when dealing with his personal life to an air of vitality and confidence when on the job. Robin, too, is at her best when working, sounding bright and on top of things; while at home, her conversation is dulled by her increasing uncertainty about marriage to fiancé. This developing doubt seems justified, since the husband-to-be, as Glenister’s interpretation perfectly captures, is a demanding and humorless bore. A Little, Brown/Mulholland hardcover.

  • Kirkus

    Starred review from July 1, 2014
    In her second pseudonymous outing as Galbraith, J.K. Rowling continues her examination of fame-those who want it, those who avoid it, those who profit from it.Cormoran Strike, Rowling's hard-living private eye, isn't as close to the edge as he was in his first appearance, The Cuckoo's Calling (2013). His success at proving supermodel Lula Landry was murdered has brought him more clients than he can handle-mostly businessmen who think their lovers are straying and divorcing wives looking for their husbands' assets-and he's even rented a small apartment above his office near Charing Cross Road. His accidental temp-turned-assistant, Robin Ellacott, is dying to stretch her investigative muscles, but she has to deal with her fiance, Matthew, who still wishes she'd taken that better-paying job in human resources. Then odd sad-sack Leonora Quine comes in asking Strike to find her missing husband, Owen, a fading enfant terrible novelist. Strike soon discovers that Owen had written a baroque fantasy novel in which he exposed the secrets of everyone he knows-including his editor, publisher and a famous writer with whom he had a falling out years earlier-and his agent had just sent it out for consideration. Rowling has great fun with the book industry: Editors, agents and publishers all want to meet the detective, but only over lunches at fancy restaurants where he's expected to foot the bill. It's no big surprise when Strike finds the writer's dead body-though it's certainly gruesome, as someone killed him in the same extravagantly macabre way he disposed of the villain of his unpublished book. As Strike tries to figure out who murdered Owen, the writer is splashed across the front pages of the tabloids in a way he would have loved when he was alive, while the detective tries to play down his own growing fame.Rowling proves once again that she's a master of plotting over the course of a series; you can see her planting seeds, especially when it comes to Robin, which can be expected to bear narrative fruit down the line. It will be a pleasure to watch what happens.

    COPYRIGHT(2014) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • Library Journal

    March 15, 2014
    As we all know, Galbraith's first Cormoran Strike novel won great reviews but not great sales until it was revealed that Galbraith was actually J.K. Rowling. Wouldn't you know a famous novelist is at the heart of this second Strike outing. When Owen Quine disappears, his wife assumes that he's on one of his little escapades and asks Strike to find him and bring him home. But as Strike discovers, Quine has just finished a novel full of nasty portraits of people he knows, and one of them may have wanted to finish him off. Just announced but out in June.

    Copyright 2014 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

  • Charles Finch, USA Today (3.5/4 stars) 'The last line of The Silkworm, which will lift the hearts of readers who have come to love its deeply sympathetic characters, offers the prospect of more of that joy both for her and for us.
  • Sue Corbett, People Robert Galbraith... has written a second absorbing whodunit starring detective Corcmoran Strike to follow last year's stealth hit, The Cuckoo's Calling.... Astutely observed, well-paced... The Silkworm thoroughly engages as a crime novel.
  • Malcolm Jones, The Daily Beast Having just the better part of a day and a night making my way through the 455 pages of The Silkworm ... I must say, I don't mind at all... The murder mystery at the heart of The Silkworm is a genuine mystery with an altogether satisfying resolution.
  • USA Today (3.5/4 stars) The master is back. . . [Rowling] returns to the strengths that made Harry Potter great—the beautiful sense of pacing, the deep but illusionless love for her characters—without sacrificing the expanded range of The Casual Vacancy.
  • Entertainment Weekly Cleverly plotted... Rowling serves up a sushi platter of red herring, sprinkling clues along the way, before Strike draws a confession out of the killer in a climax straight out of Agatha Christie.
  • Michiko Kakutani, New York Times Highly entertaining [with] a team whose further adventures the reader cannot help eagerly awaiting.
  • The Washington Post [Rowling's] literary gift is on display in this work. She crafts an entertaining story [and] comes up with an ending that I'll admit I was surprised by. . . . A fun read, with a main character you can care about and one you'll want to see again in other adventures.
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    Little, Brown and Company
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