Cuckoo cuckoo?
December 7, 2013 2:17 PM   Subscribe

My girlfriend just read and deeply enjoyed The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Galbraith (J.K. Rowling). She is not a regular reader of detective fiction. Can you recommend other books she might like?

Re: The Cuckoo's Calling: she liked the driving plottiness of the book but also the complexity and specificity of the characterization and the level of detail in the prose style. She's open to other detective novels that have a similar feel to this ones as well as novels in other genres.

Some other books she's enjoyed recently:

The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt
The Husband's Secret by Lianne Moriarty
The Next Time You See Me by Holly Goddard Jones
I'm So Happy For You by Lucinda Rosenfeld
Big Brother by Lionel Shriver
posted by raisindebt to Writing & Language (10 answers total) 23 users marked this as a favorite
Anything by Dashiell Hammett.
posted by schroedingersgirl at 2:39 PM on December 7, 2013

The Rook by Daniel O'Malley is one of the most original things I have read this year and has a detective story aspect. I read it around the same time as The Cuckoo's Calling and thought they had a similar feel.

Karin Slaughter's Will Trent books are excellent crime fiction with compelling, well-drawn characters, although some of them are pretty disturbing and/or gory. The first one is Triptych. She wrote an earlier series known as Grant County, which later merges with the Will Trent books, but I have not read those and can't vouch for them.
posted by something something at 2:43 PM on December 7, 2013 [1 favorite]

Oh, she'll love Ruth Rendell.
posted by scratch at 2:48 PM on December 7, 2013

Tana French! Her first one (In the Woods) is great, but it has some unsatisfying aspects and therefore can be skipped over in favor of her second, The Likeness. Her books are loosely tied together in that they follow the same detective squad and each book is focused on a different detective, but they're not a formal series.
posted by phatkitten at 3:09 PM on December 7, 2013 [2 favorites]

Seconding Tana French. "The Likeness" reminded me of Donna Tartt's "The Secret History", which is another one she may want to read.
posted by backwards guitar at 4:56 PM on December 7, 2013 [1 favorite]

Go old school. I think she'd love Dorothy Sayers, PD James and Elizabeth George.

Try her on Laura Lippman's And When She Was Good, too.

And Rowling's The Casual Vacancy will likely please her too.
posted by bearwife at 6:37 PM on December 7, 2013 [1 favorite]

If she liked Rowling, I think she'll also enjoy Agatha Christie, too.
posted by These Birds of a Feather at 10:39 PM on December 7, 2013

Thank you all for your excellent answers. She has a lot of great books/authors to try now (and after looking them up, I find that I'm interested in checking out some of these myself!).
posted by raisindebt at 6:49 AM on December 8, 2013

I haven't read the other books you mention but I'm currently reading Cuckoo's Calling. I agree, The Rook would go well with it. I also feel there's a touch of le Carré in it. Also Jasper Fforde, for the plot and well thought-out characters. As far as straight-up mysteries, I think it's similar in feel to the Adam Dalgleish books by P.D. James.
posted by The corpse in the library at 7:04 AM on December 8, 2013

Josephine Tey!
posted by Iridic at 9:01 PM on December 8, 2013

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