1 December 2020 Susannah

Robert Galbraith’s books

Books by Robert Galbraith

I have really enjoyed the Cormoran Strike series written by J.K. Rowling under the pen name of Robert Galbraith. J.K. Rowling became internationally famous with her Harry Potter series, and when she began writing crime fiction, she decided to keep her authorship a secret. She was interested to see how her books might be judged as the work of an ‘unknown’ author. The first book in the series, The Cuckoo’s Calling, appeared in 2013, but her authorship was revealed that same year by the Sunday Times, to whom the secret had been leaked by the wife of a lawyer who represented her. Troubled Blood is the 5th novel in the series and, in my view, they have all been excellent. I found this last one hard to put down and very much hope that it will be filmed as the earlier books have been.

J.K. Rowling has also been in the media for her views on transgender people. I was interested to hear that a bookshop in Perth had banned her latest book from their stock because of these views. As I read Troubled Blood, I kept an eye out for what it was that could make a bookshop ban a book certain to sell well.

In its 927 pages, there is one small reference to a man who disguises himself in a woman’s coat and hat in order to approach a victim. Hardly a criticism of transgender people! That Perth bookshop should hang its head in shame! The shop owners have clearly NOT read the book. They should also sit down and have a very good think about their decision.

Do you ban a book just because you may not like the views of the author on a particular subject? Does that bookshop remove Dickens’ novels from its shelves because he treated his wife so horribly? Do you push out the door the Diary of Samuel Pepys because Pepys was a serial groper of women (the #MeToo movement would have had a field day with him!), should Villette go because it is anti-Catholic, or should The Merchant of Venice never be staged again because of its portrayal of a Jewish character? It’s absurd to try and ban books because you disagree with the author on something. Jane Austen and I would not have agreed on the subject of religion, but would I ever in 100 million years ever dream of banning Jane Austen? Well, I’ll leave you to work that one out.

J.K. Rowling has done more than probably any other human being on this planet to encourage children to love books. Every book shop in the world should be proud to stock her works, under whichever name she chooses to use, and should put them in the front window. So this is my message – “Thanks, J.K. Rowling, for a fantastic read and all you have done for reading on this planet, from your very grateful and admiring fan.”

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Featured image credit- Books by Robert Galbraith, https://www.goodreads.com/series/108050-cormoran-strike

Comments (10)

  1. Shona

    The Robert Galbraiths books are absolutely fabulous I can’t wait for the next book in this series. Do we know when the next one will be released

    • Susannah Fullerton

      I very much hope that she is busy writing the next book now, as I am already looking forward to it. I thought the most recent one was one of her best!

  2. Carolyn Cossgrove

    I cleared my schedule and pre-cooked the family dinner in anticipation of buying and reading Troubled Blood. Took me 48 Hours as I had to go to work! Love these books:)
    I feel that there is a massive amount of hypocrisy with all this book banning business based on the authors personal beliefs. If a conservative group asks people to boycott books, or not to stock them because of it’s perceived harmful content, they get hounded down by the masses. But when this kind of stand is taken, the media seem to be relatively quiet about it. Out of curiosity, I read JK Rowlings’ “Essay” and thought her comments were quite fair. Even though I don’t agree with them all, I believe she is entitled to share them if she wants to. Trying to destroy her livelihood to punish her makes me frightened for our future.

    • Susannah Fullerton

      I agree 100%. It is frightening and I fear that the world will have no place for humour, diversity of opinion or authors writing about racial groups or sexual groups to which they themselves do not belong, if this PC stuff continues.
      I also found it very hard to put Troubled Blood down and am already longing for another one in the series.

  3. Toni Pollard

    I read all 927 pages of Troubled Blood over one weekend recently. Unputdownable. She is a genius of plot and structure- character too. Love getting to know Cormoran and Robin even better over all the books. Like you, I was on the lookout for anything to justify the PC critics and was equally outraged to find how unjustly Rowling’s has been accused. Can’t esit got the next book!

    • Susannah Fullerton

      Glad you feel just as I do. So ridiculous to ban it just because you don’t agree with some of her views. I just loved every page of it and can’t wait for the enxt one, which I believe she is currently writing.

  4. Melody

    Refusing to stock a book because of its author’s very public statements is not the same as banning a book. The bookshop in question is not obliged to stock every book in print and may adjust its inventory to please its own clientele. Compare this ‘ban’ with the recent parting of ways of Pete Evans and his publisher, for Evans’s espousal of neo-Nazi beliefs (that have nothing to do with his recipes). Again, it’s not actually a ‘ban’: he can still publish cookbooks, if he can find a new publisher who is willing to take on his brand of crazy.

    • Susannah Fullerton

      According to the dictionary, ‘to ban’ is to ‘forbid or refuse to allow’ something, so I do think that fits what the bookshop is doing. They are refusing to allow copies of ‘Troubled Blood’ into their shop, even though they know copies will sell extremely well.

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