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Judy Rowse

I confess I approached this book with some trepidation, because while I had enjoyed the debut Cormoran Strike, I found the 2nd and 3rd increasingly dark and violent.

However, while the blackmail and subsequent death of a government minister provides an intriguing and convoluted plot, the novel is not unduly violent, and concentrates heavily on Strike's emotional turmoil as he tries to distance himself from Robin and Matt's turbulent relationship.

Of course there is a gripping sting in the final few pages, to keep the adrenaline racing!

Linda Swalwell

I thoroughly enjoyed this novel which picks up the story of private detective Cormoran Strike and Robin at a critical moment in their personal and professional lives. I think it contains enough detail for those who have not had the pleasure of reading the previous three novels in the series to be able to enjoy it. The complex relationship between the two protagonists continues to fascinate the reader and is brilliantly depicted. The author also creates credible minor characters, such as the despicable Matthew, Robin’s husband and Lorelei, Strike's latest girlfriend. Set in 2012 in London, it accurately describes the Olympic fever raging in the capital, political corruption at all levels and personal failings amidst an intriguing, credible plot line full of engaging twists and turns. At 647 pages, it is a weighty tome, but one that is definitely worth reading and, once you have started, impossible to put down.

Harold Freeman

Brooding private eye Cormoran Strike and his assistant Robin Ellacott are back in this fourth novel by Robert Galbraith (aka J. K. Rowling). He is moved by a troubled young man who thinks that he witnessed a crime as a child and this is linked to an investigation for a wealthy client. The action takes place in London, in parliament and a grand country house. In spite of hiring extra staff, Cormoron struggles with his painful stump but carries on regardless. Robin is very unhappy in her marriage but is very involved in the investigations, even risking her life. The gripping story holds you through over 600 pages and is difficult to put down especially the gripping drama at the end. Highly recommended.

Joyce Dobson

Have not quite finished the book but am enjoying it very much! Having read through previous books and watched the T.V. Serial has made this book more enjoyable as I have put the actor’s faces to the names! Good story line and I love the growing attraction of the main characters! Must say I don't think it is a book for children!

Alison Owen

This is the fourth book in the Cormoran Strike series written by J. K. Rowling under a pseudonym. Set amid the 2012 Olympics in London, the novel picks up from where the previous novel, Career of Evil, leaves off.

At 647 pages this is a doorstop and full of twists and turns that finally managed to come together at the end with a solid conclusion for those who stick it out. As with the other books in the series there are two major plots. First is the standalone mystery of the particular book (set this time amongst the British upper classes and politicians) and second is the story of Cormoran and Robin and their relationship with each other and with others.

Not an unmitigated success and having had to wait two years for it to appear it was not as satisfying as some of the earlier books but I still raced through it. I was also not sure about the Ibsen quotes at the start of each chapter but JK Rowling writes a good story and dialogue and I’ll look forward to book 5.

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