Tag Archives: JK Rowling

Cormoran Strike, Dungeons and Dragons, and Creepy ‘Eileen’

I’m utterly enthralled by Cormoran Strike, the private detective at the center of JK Rowling’s pseudonymous crime series. The third book, Career of Evil, finds Strike and his assistant Robin Ellacott the target of a psychopath with a penchant for dismemberment–and Robin seems to be his target. Rowling (as Robert Galbraith) understands that she can’t just deliver an intricately plotted crime story, she also has to take the characters further on their journey. At the end of the book, I was so heavily invested in…

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The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith

Synopsis: In this book about Cormoran Strike, beleaguered amputee veteran turned private eye, an egotistical novelist has gone missing, and all signs point to a literary puzzle with potentially deadly consequences. Review: Listen, writing mysteries is harder than it seems. The best writers (Barbara Vine) conceal the works so deftly that you forget how necessary machinations and contrivance are to the genre. So don’t think I’m picking on The Silkworm just because I want to take JK Rowling down a peg (I don’t) when I…

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The Cuckoo’s Calling by Robert Galbraith

Synopsis: When a childhood friend asks PI Cormoran Strike to investigate the suspicious-looking suicide of his supermodel sister, Strike battles personal demons in order to revive his career and prevent the killer from striking again. Review: I am really, really picky when it comes to crime novels. I don’t love the genre in its own right, and I’m not generally a fan of recurring detectives. However, I’m desperately hoping that JK Rowling is planning to write more murder mysteries featuring Cormoran Strike because I just…

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The Casual Vacancy by JK Rowling

Synopsis: After a popular parish council member drops dead from an aneurysm, the bucolic English town of Pagford comes undone over fears about how a new council member might upset the balance of power with the encroachment of council flats from the next town over. Review: The Casual Vacancy isn’t quite as high concept as JK Rowling’s more familiar works, but most good novels defy my particular brand of glib summarization. I always enjoy a complicated soap opera and I appreciated how deftly Rowling wove…

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The Tales of Beedle the Bard by JK Rowling

Synopsis: A collection of traditional wizarding fairy tales translated by Hermione Granger and annotated by Albus Dumbledore–with an introduction by JK Rowling. Review: Why couldn’t Beedle the Bard be twice as long? I loved these stories, which read just like “real” fairy tales, but with a spin that marks them as belonging to the world of Harry Potter and friends. What could be a clever gimmick works because the stories themselves work even if you know nothing of Harry Potter. They’re classic in their execution…

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Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by JK Rowling

Synopsis: Harry Potter braces for his final battle with evil Lord Voldemort, knowing that only one of them will survive. Review: My biggest criticism of Harry Potter has always been his passivity. In the first few books especially, he spends most of his time being rescued or protected, simply because he’s “The Boy Who Lived.” And for awhile, it seemed as though JK Rowling wasn’t paying attention–was creating a hero who didn’t deserve to bear that name. Share on Facebook

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Essential Books For Children

I want to start a conversation about what readers think are the books that no child should be without. I’m building a library for Superfast Baby, and here are my 10 must haves for boys and 10 must haves for girls: Boys: 1. The Harry Potter series by JK Rowling 2. A House with a Clock in its Walls by John Bellairs 3. Don’t Care High by Gordon Korman Share on Facebook

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