Are you a thriller enthusiast intrigued by the process of solving a mysterious crime or murder case? Robert Galbraith’s books in the Cormoran Strike series will run your fantasy wild. The series centers on solving enthralling crime cases by detective strike and his colleague Robin Ellacott. But what’s the best way to read the Robert Galbraith books in order?
Below we will discuss each book from the first one in the series. But, before that, let’s first learn about who Robert Galbraith is.
Who is Robert Galbraith?
Potterheads, fans of Harry Potter, and book readers everywhere are well aware of the series’ world-renowned author, J.K. Rowling. But did you know that Robert Galbraith is a penname for none other than Rowling herself?
So the obvious question becomes, why did J.K. Rowling write as Robert Galbraith instead of herself? As you might already suspect, the answer is that she didn’t want the pressure of writing as Rowling. With the wide-spread success of Harry Potter, certain expectations are placed upon Rowling for any book she publishes.
The ability to write something new and different without the hype of her name allowed her to remove stress from the process of writing a novel. Of course, Galbraith’s identity didn’t stay secret for long or we still wouldn’t know about it today.
Rowling’s first novel, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, was published in 1997. J.K. Rowling did not publish any books for adults until she published The Casual Vacancy in 2011 under her own name which was received with mixed reactions.
Hence why later in 2013, she published her first book as Robert Galbraith, The Cuckoo’s Calling.
Her books have been adapted for TV, translated into many languages, and won numerous awards and honors. Her fifth book in the Comoran Strike series, Troubled Blood, got the Book of the Year Award in the British Book Awards, Crime and Fiction category.
Cormoran Strike Series Summary by Robert Galbraith
For those who love crime fiction, the Cormoran Strike novel series will keep you entertained throughout. The story revolves around detective Cormoran Strike. He is a retired military soldier who is broke and wounded when he starts a PI company.
He works closely with his assistant, Robin, later to become his partner in the series. They solve mysterious crime cases that not only lead to more danger but also challenge his boundaries.
Besides investigating mysterious criminal cases, the story also revolves around his love life. Although his partner is gorgeous and develops strong feelings for him, Cormoran continues to engage in meaningless relationships. On top of this, he experiences family issues seeing that he is the illegitimate son of a rock star.
His journey dealing with dangerous crime cases, spiced by his challenging life, engages the reader throughout the books.
In total, five books are in the series so far. All of them were straightaway successes and accommodated by HBO and BBC for TV.
Robert Galbraith Books in Order of Publication
- The Cuckoo’s Calling (2013)
- The Silkworm (2014)
- Career of Evil (2015)
- Lethal White (2018)
- Troubled Blood (2020)
- The Ink Black Heart (2022)
Cormoran Strike TV Adaptations
BBC announced adapting Galbraith’s Strike Series for TV in 2016. Tom Burke and Holliday Grainger are the casts for the series as Strike, and Robin respectively. The TV series premiered on August 2017. HBO confirmed it to distribute in Canada and USA.
The first books in the series, The Cuckoo’s Calling, The Silkworm, and Career of Evil, are adapted for TV, with Lethal White and Troubled Blood to be produced soon.
Adapting Cuckoo’s Calling from a book to a television program, Ben Richards strives to balance maintaining the authenticity of Galbraith’s story with the ridiculous standards of the genre. The Strike character is portrayed as not disgusting yet shelved to achieve grubby decency. Tom Edges adopted The Silkworm, Career of Evil, and Lethal White.
Summary of Robert Galbraith Books in Order
It was published in 2013 being her first crime novel. It features an investigation by Cormoran Strike. He gets hired by a brother to investigate the death of his supermodel adoptive sister. According to reports, the model collapsed from a balcony. However, the brother presumes otherwise. He won’t stop until the real cause of her death is known.
The starling in this book strikes a private investigator and an ex-royal military soldier. He came back from the war wounded with creditors on his toes. Moreover, he has also fallen out with his girlfriend. With no money, he camps in his office for shelter with only one client to help him stay financially afloat.
His life becomes in apparent danger the more he digs into the model’s case, leaving him on edge all the time. That thrilling part of The Cuckoo’s Calling is what will keep you glued on the book, eager to find out what happens next. In addition, the novel helps you grasp Cormoran’s personality and his twisted life.
The setting of this book is in London, evolving around Soho’s chaotic streets and the serene Mayfair. The book has garnered tremendous feedback from readers.
As Book Two in the Cormoran series, anticipation grows with the preceding book making a lot of success. Galbraith doesn’t disappoint. Again, it centers on Private Investigator Cormoran Strike, working on another puzzling case with his assistant Robin Ellacott.
It involves finding Owen Quine, a renowned novelist who has disappeared. His wife, who hires Strike, wants him found and back home. She believes he has gone away alone like he always does. However, as Cormoran drills deeper with the investigation, it is evident that there is more to Owen’s disappearance than what the wife perceives.
His efforts become challenged when Quine’s dead body gets discovered. It turns out that the novelist’s last manuscript is about people he knows. All these people have a reason to eliminate him to prevent the publication of this story and have their lives exposed.
Following the twisted journey of Cormoran trying to uncover the real culprit in this mysterious murder case will give you no choice but stay glued to the story.
3. Career of the Evil
The plot of Robert Galbraith, 3rd book in this series, develops from the previous two stories. Robin, Cormoran’s assistance, is terrified after discovering a mysterious package.
Its content is a human being’s severed leg.
Strike speculates that this is from someone they crossed paths with in the past. Combining forces with his assistance, Robin Ellacott, they throw themselves to investigate who is responsible for the murder.
He holds that the police are investigating the wrong person.
They have three suspects to investigate, and time is not on their side. They are yet to reveal yet another killer.The horrifying scenes in the thriller will keep you reading to know how Robin and Strike overcome them.
4. Lethal White
In this fourth book, Cormoran Strike is still the main character, along with his partner, Robin. They work together to investigate a troubling crime story.
It starts with Billy, a man who looks mentally disturbed, walking into Strikes Office. He claims to have seen a child murdered.
The setting of the story is during the London Olympics. The investigation takes the two through corridors of power branded with corruption, betrayal, and blackmail concerning a devious MP. The plot also touches on the suspended emotional tension between the two partners. Strike engages in relationships full of flaws with lovers not as beautiful and talented as his partner. On the other hand, Robin, who is has fallen in love with Strike, is in a cold marriage with a grim accountant.
The story contains several false clues and diversions that take you through a puzzling and captivating investigation journey.
5. Troubled Blood
It is the latest published book in the series. It centers on an investigation concerning a woman, Margot Bamborough, who strangely disappeared 40 years ago.
Her daughter Anna Phipps hires Strike to get the bottom of her mother’s disappearance.
Cormoran Strike is intrigued by this case, though its probability of succeeding seems to be almost zero.
The case comes when Strike is visiting his ailing aunt while dealing with other personal annoyances. At the same time, his partner Robin is struggling to get a divorce from Mathew amid volatility in her life.
The case takes a long time, but Cormoran continues to investigate even after Anna ends the contract.
6. The Ink Black Heart (August 2022)
The latest installment in the highly acclaimed, internationally bestselling Strike series finds Cormoran and Robin ensnared in another winding, wicked case.
Details to come.
Now you understand that the best way to grasp the Cormoran strike story is by reading the Robert Galbraith books in order.
Looking for more books in order?
Check out my list of Jack Reacher books in order.