Albert: I proposed this book because I’d read the first two Cormoran Strike books and didn’t realize the third one was out until recently. Career of Evil reminded me a lot of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, with frequent references to rape and violence. What gives Career of Evil the edge is that I simply like the Cormoran/Robin duo more than Mikael/Lisbeth — both Cormoran and Robin act far more rationally and in less aggravating ways than Mikael and Lisbeth. The actual mystery plot in Career of Evil is decent, but the closer focus on Robin’s personal life in particular fleshes out her character with interesting depth and makes her the star of this story.
While it’s a typical mystery story in many ways, an unusual element is that we get several chapters from the perspective of the killer as well, whose frequently misogynistic and violent thoughts are intriguing to read. Maybe it’s because I grew up reading Rowling’s Harry Potter series, but I found her writing in this story as engaging as ever to read. Rating: A-
Kevin: There are a lot of names mentioned in this book, and it was kind of overwhelming at first. There’s also a lot of dialogue, but it all flows nicely and can often be quite humorous. I also like the characters and somehow found myself relating to Cormoran at times. As far as the plot goes, I’m not a huge fan of mysteries; I guess I don’t really read to think.
Overall, the characters and events were somewhat memorable, but not that memorable. Unlike the Harry Potter series, this book probably isn’t one that I’d enjoy reading multiple times. At times, it seemed to drag just a little bit too much with the dialogue, but somewhat counter-intuitively, I may have felt this way because I was somewhat rushing. Rating: B