When Amanda and I started this blog (almost) a year ago, we didn’t really know what we were doing. (Spoiler alert: we still don’t.) One of the first things we decided to do was read a book together and discuss. We started with The Cuckoo’s Calling, and posted check-ins at 30% through, 60% through, and done.
We loved our read-along, so we’ve kept that up to read other books together! We also loved The Cuckoo’s Calling and Private Investigator Comoran Strike.
All this is leading up to saying that it’s time for another read-along, and this time we’re reading The Silkworm, the second Comoran Strike novel by Robert Galbraith a.k.a. J.K. Rowling.
If you’re not familiar with our hero, Strike, he’s an Army vet working a one man detective firm with the help of his office assistant Robin (we love Robin!). Novelist Owen Quine is missing and his wife believes he’s in hiding at a London hotel. She hires Strike to roust Quine out and send him home. Strike learns there is much more going on than an unhappy author out sulking when he reads Quine’s latest novel. Then, when Quine is found brutally murdered, Strike becomes much more involved in this case than he expected to be.
We’re up to 30% so far, and here’s what we’re thinking!
Holly: So far, I still adore Robin and I want her to be involved in solving the case! Also, tosser is a British word that we should use more of.
Amanda: We found out what the silkworm is! Also, the book within this book is weird. Of course, totally agree re: tosser. Will definitely try to throw it into use more often.
Holly: I quite love this line – “if it had crossed Strike’s mind that it might be considered arrogant or deluded of a private detective with no authority in the investigation to imagine he had the power to delegate tasks to the police office in charge of the case, the thought did not trouble him.” I love Strike.
Amanda: I love that even though we’re only 30% in I feel like we’re getting to know Strike a bit better. I want more about his Army life and how he was led to open this office. I also want to know more about his ex-fiance, Charlotte, and what life was like for them together. Basically I want to know why she’s wrong for Strike so that I can see how perfect Robin would be for him.
Holly: So, I still haven’t read Rowling’s The Casual Vacancy (yet), but I hear there is a big emphasis on class distinctions. And, I was thinking about that in how this book has set up the difference between Strike, his office, and his living quarters, as opposed to Robin’s fiance Matthew (bit of a tosser). Or even his own sister Lucy. Or his ex. Strike does not inhabit the world of the comfortably middle-class – though that is at least in part by choice.
Amanda: If you think about Rowling herself I would think she has more perspective on class distinctions than many authors, right? Going from the poverty line as a single mother to having more money than the Queen of England must leave you with some opinions on class status. Strike also has exposure to all sides also from his unconventional upbringing, his knowledge of his rockstar father, Army life and then living with Charlotte. We know the situation he’s in now with living above his office isn’t as bad as things could be, but it will be interesting to see as the series progresses if his income grows how his lifestyle changes. As long as he doesn’t become a tosser its all good.
Holly: Dude, don’t even!
Amanda: Don’t even what?! What did I do?
Holly: Don’t even call Strike a tosser! That is a misuse of our new vocabulary word.
We’re back to reading and we’ll check in next week with another 30% done!