Author: Robert Galbraith (J.K. Rowling), 2013.
Genre: Crime Fiction. Mystery. Detective Fiction.
Other Details: ebook. 550 pages.
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 . . . - synopsis from UK publisher's website.
I first read this novel two years ago (2013 Book 144). When it was selected for one of my reading groups, I elected to re-read rather than rely on memory even though I rarely re-visit mysteries. I felt it held up well on a second reading mainly for the pleasure of the writing. The plotting was great and it was easy to see why when first published that a number of reviewers felt it was too polished to be a first novel from an unknown author.
Overall, an excellent old-fashioned detective mystery that makes excellent use of its London setting. Knowing whodunit I was able to appreciate how we were led to that reveal. It was the first book in a while that everyone in the reading group gave a thumbs up to and even though a number of us had read it previously we agreed it was worthwhile a re-visit. We also all agreed that its biting satirical take on celebrity and the paparazzi was clearly born of the author's own experiences.