Wednesday, March 18, 2015

'The Cuckoo's Calling' by #JKRowling Writing as Robert Galbraith

I loved this audiobook, so I'm as surprised as you are that I simply don't have very much more to say about it, other than what I covered in my March 1st post. Just a few talking points, then:

- The title, of course, comes from a poem by Christina Rossetti called "The Dirge." I haven't read much of Rossetti. I'm slightly more familiar with her notorious uncle, John William Polidori.

- I said Rowling has a casual familiarity with 400 years of British literature, but she also makes at least passing reference to American literature in this volume. A poem by Walt Whitman is mentioned. During the episode in which he learns of his ex-fiance's engagement and has too much to drink, Cormoran Strike reveals himself to have something in common with Robert E. Lee Prewitt in From Here to Eternity. Namely, both were boxers in their respective armies. Also, Strike is very, very drunk, as Prew so often gets in the War Trilogy.

Physically, Strike is described as a large, lumbering man with curly hair - less Montgomery Clift as Prew in From Here to Eternity, more John C. Reilly as John Storm in The Thin Red Line.

- Apart from Cormoran, Robin, and Lula herself, I think my favorite character is Guy Somé. First of all, it's hilarious that he gave himself a professional name that's a faux-Frenchified version of "some guy." Second of all, being gay, he had no sexual interest in Lula, yet he still loved her very, very much in a platonic way. I love their friendship. I hope he shows up again in The Silkworm.

But I really hope that in a future short story or drabble based on her Harry Potter characters, J.K. Rowling has one of them wear a Guy Somé design. I'd love to see Draco Malfoy in a studded hoodie. Astoria Greengrass can wear it when he's not home.

- Vashti is a great name for a high-end clothes shop. You may remember Queen Vashti of Persia from the Biblical book of Esther. When her drunken husband orders her to appear before him and his rowdy, drunken friends, Vashti refuses. She has sometimes been thought of as haughty and self-important in Jewish tradition, but to feminists it simply seems as if she valued her own worth over her husband's senseless "command." Vashti's reward is to be replaced by the more submissive Esther, much in the same way Lilith is replaced by the more submissive Eve.

- Nothing ever explained how Lula got that scar on her arm, so I'm just going to have to assume "from Voldemort" is the correct answer.

- Headcanon: Lula Landry and Fred Weasley are dating in heaven.


kimbacaffeinate said...

This is one on my wishlist and I hadn't considered audio...but you have me going to listen to a clip now. So glad you enjoyed it

Erin O'Riordan said...

Robert Glenister is wonderful narrator, by the way. His voice characterizations make me forget completely that I'm listening to a single person reading.