Tag Archives: The Silkworm

WWW Wednesday, 21-October-2015

21 Oct

Welcome to WWW Wednesday! This meme was formerly hosted by MizB at Should be Reading and revived here on Taking on a World of Words. Just answer the three questions below and leave a link to your post in the comments for others to look at. No blog? No problem! Just leave a comment with your responses. Please, take some time to visit the other participants and see what others are reading. So, let’s get to it!

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The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


CloudAtlasCurrently reading:  Not much with Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell this week. Unless it gets really interesting really quickly, I’m not sure I’ll finish it this year.
Still nothing with I Am Malala by Malala Yousafzai.  I’ve got to get through Cloud Atlas first. Yikes.
Steady progress Out Stealing Horses by Per Petterson. The writing in this book is really great and I’m excited I’m finally finding the time to read it.
I’m super close to finishing Made in America: An Informal History of the English Language in the United States by Bill Bryson. I’ve made a few longer car trips this month which helped me get through it. I’m wondering if Bryson’s other books are like this. I have A Walk In the Woods on my shelf and I hope it’s a little different as a memoir than this non-fiction.
Steady progress on  Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury.I’m about half-way through and I don’t remember much of the story at all. This all feels really new to me so it’s exciting to see what happens next still.

SamuraiRecently finished: I finished  The Samurai’s Garden by Gayle Tsukiyama on Friday. I liked the ending and found it fitting, but it still felt very open-ended. This will be an interesting book club discussion.

Just one book review this past week and I think a lot of you already checked it out. Please take a look at my review of Robert Galbraith’s (J.K. Rowling’s) The Silkworm. I gave it Four out of Five stars and really enjoyed the story. I’m glad she’s started a mystery series!

AnneFrankReading Next: I hope to start Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut pretty soon as I’m getting close on 451. It’s a good time for classics.
Even more classics, I should have time to start Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen before my next book club selection. I might have to stretch this one out a bit to fit in those other books, but I’ll keep my fingers crossed.
The next audiobook for my car is going to be The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank. I’m embarrassed to say I’ve never read this one. I’ve seen the play, but never read the book in school or had another reason to pick it up. I’ve been admonished enough and I’m excited to read the word’s right from Anne’s hands.


Leave a comment with your link and a comment (if you’re so inclined). Take a look at the other participant links in the comments and look at what others are reading.

Have any opinions on these choices?

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on GoodreadsFacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

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Book Review: The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith (4/5)

15 Oct

I’ll admit I’m one of those people who jumped on the Robert Galbraith series once I found out this was a pen name for J.K. Rowling. I’m not normally a mystery fan, but I enjoyed The Cuckoo’s Calling and wanted to eventually get my hands on this second installment. Eventually came, as it often does for me, in an audiobook.

Cover image via Goodreads.com

Cover image via Goodreads.com

The Silkworm (Cormoran Strike #2) by Robert Galbraith

Summary from Goodreads:

When novelist Owen Quine goes missing, his wife calls in private detective Cormoran Strike. At first, Mrs. Quine just thinks her husband has gone off by himself for a few days—as he has done before—and she wants Strike to find him and bring him home.

But as Strike investigates, it becomes clear that there is more to Quine’s disappearance than his wife realizes. The novelist has just completed a manuscript featuring poisonous pen-portraits of almost everyone he knows. If the novel were to be published, it would ruin lives—meaning that there are a lot of people who might want him silenced.

When Quine is found brutally murdered under bizarre circumstances, it becomes a race against time to understand the motivation of a ruthless killer, a killer unlike any Strike has encountered before…

Another great hit with Cormoran Strike. I’m not a big mystery person, but this was a good book for me. I liked learning more and more about Quine as we went. But, like in the first book, my complaint is what was kept from the reader that made it hard to figure out the killer. Strike is a genius and sees the small things but he doesn’t make his revelations obvious to the reader and then we’re left with a bit of shadow as we try to figure out what he’s scheming at. I liked seeing Robin’s relationship with Matthew change. I think that’s a strong running story element in the series.

One of the characteristics of Rowling’s writing that I admire is her ability to create memorable side characters. Leonora and Orlando Quine, for example, will be hard to forget soon. Pippa was great, too. The characters were very flushed out, no matter how briefly they showed their faces in the story. She does a wonderful job of giving them all a personality and back story that are very unique.

Robin is still my favorite character in the series. She’s very strong when it’s hard to be. Her fiance is a very dominating man and very manipulative, but Robin finds ways to work things out with him and make him see her side of them. She’s also rather fearless when it comes to detective work. I’d be terrified to pull off some of the things Strike asks her to do, especially the stunt she pulls in the final scenes.

I related most to Robin, mostly because of her engagement to Matthew. My wedding was two years ago and I had to endure the awkward merging of the families and endurance of in-laws that she seems to go through. I’ve had the thoughts that I’m sure many engaged people have that my parents and family are awesome and my significant other somehow crawled out of a family of really strange people to become the person I love. Of course, this becomes easier with time, but I could remember those feelings when Robin was describing coming home for her mother-in-law’s funeral.

J.K. Rowling Image via The Telegraph

J.K. Rowling
Image via The Telegraph

I thought Katherine Kent and Pippa Midgley made a great sub-plot to the story. I read a bit into Rowling’s feelings on self-publishing and the publishing industry in general with these scenes. As a writer myself, I liked having her insight on the publishing industry and using these two characters as a criticism of self-publishing was a bit of lighthearted fun for me and hopefully other writers.

It made me angry to read how Strike treated Nina. I felt bad for her. She was trying to help someone out and he used her. He didn’t even do it subconsciously, he did it knowingly and purposefully dumped her unceremoniously when she wasn’t useful anymore. Any attempt she made to be nice he thwarted and ran away from. It made me dislike the character for the first time.

The audiobook I listened to was from Overdrive and narrated by Robert Glenister. This is the same narrator from The Cuckoo’s Calling. I like when narrators are consistent across a series so I was glad to hear him again. I thought he did a good job yet again, bringing in accents for each of the characters dependent on where in the UK they were from. I’m not very good at the different British accents as an American, but I could recognize the differences and remembered talking about dialectal differences while I studied in the UK. In the same way I wouldn’t want to hear a character from New York City with a Southern Drawl, I’m glad this narrator tried to make the character’s speech patterns consistent.

Owen Quine was a very vain person. A lot of the things we learn about him concerned his need for attention and how everyone found him self-centered and at times hard to talk to. Yet they tolerated him because he’d written one (maybe two) good books. His vanity and determination of his own genius led to his downfall (not saying how!). I see this story as a warning against vanity and asking those who create art and who are involved in art to realize a single person can think highly of himself and how dangerous that can be. Especially those pesky writer types. Geeze.

Writer’s Takeaway: I don’t think I have much to add from the last Galbraith novel I read. Side characters are still important. Suspense makes a reader keep going. Though I think I would add that not giving your reader everything is a hard place to balance. You have to give them enough to make them keep reading and know they’re getting close to a solution but keep enough hidden for a big reveal. I thought this book balanced a bit too much on the ‘hiding’ side of this balance. I wish I’d been able to detective along with Strike.

Enjoyable and entertaining. Four out of Five stars.

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on GoodreadsFacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

Related Posts:
The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith | Alastair Savage
The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith | The Next Book on the Shelf
Review: ‘The Silkworm’ by Robert Galbraith | The Life of a Thinker
The Silkworm – Robert Galbraith | Track of Words

WWW Wednesday, 30-September-2015

30 Sep

Welcome to WWW Wednesday! This meme was formerly hosted by MizB at Should be Reading and revived here on Taking on a World of Words. Just answer the three questions below and leave a link to your post in the comments for others to look at. No blog? No problem! Just leave a comment with your responses. Please, take some time to visit the other participants and see what others are reading. So, let’s get to it!

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The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


SamuraiCurrently reading:  At least I can say I read some of Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell this week though it’s embarrassingly little. It’s honestly stalled for me and I’m having trouble being engaged.
I guess you can figure out I didn’t read any of I Am Malala by Malala Yousafzai. To be continued…
I picked up with Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng again. I’ll get through it soon, I’m enjoying the story.
I picked up The Samurai’s Garden by Gayle Tsukiyama for my book club on Tuesday night. I’m looking forward to reading this one as another woman from our club has enjoyed it.
I needed a new ‘in between book,’ one I pick up in between reading book club books. I grabbed Out Stealing Horses by Per Petterson from my shelf, one I’ve been meaning to read for a while. I hope it’s good!

Bird BoxRecently finished: Two finished! One physical and one audio. I got through Bird Box by Josh Malerman on Friday. I was waiting for my husband at our campsite for our bike event and I couldn’t put it down! A full 5 out of 5.
I also finished The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith on Monday. I liked the story, but I felt like I wasn’t given enough information to try to figure out the killer by myself. Oh well.

One book review this last week. It was The Invisible Bridge by Julie Orringer. Please let me know if you’ve read it and what you thought.

451Reading Next: Well, it’s time for the next book club selection! We’re going with a classic this time and I’ll be picking up Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury. I read this my Sophomore year of high school and don’t remember much so it will be fun to pick it up again as an adult and see what I think.


Leave a comment with your link and a comment (if you’re so inclined). Take a look at the other participant links in the comments and look at what others are reading.

Have any opinions on these choices?

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on GoodreadsFacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

WWW Wednesday, 23-September-2015

23 Sep

Welcome to WWW Wednesday! This meme was formerly hosted by MizB at Should be Reading and revived here on Taking on a World of Words. Just answer the three questions below and leave a link to your post in the comments for others to look at. No blog? No problem! Just leave a comment with your responses. Please, take some time to visit the other participants and see what others are reading. So, let’s get to it!

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The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


Bird BoxCurrently reading:  I honestly am embarrassed at how slowly I’m getting through Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell. I checked it out again, but I’m not sure I got through anything new with it. I haven’t had a lot of chance for an eBook lately. Maybe soon?
I guess you can figure out I didn’t read any of I Am Malala by Malala Yousafzai. To be continued…
No progress with Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng. I hope to finish it up soon, though!
Making great progress on The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith! This one is really great and has grabbed my attention. I read on Galbraith/Rowling’s Twitter feed that the third in the series will be coming out soon so I’m excited to get my hands on it quickly.
I started copy of Bird Box by Josh Malerman Sunday night. Not too far into it yet, but I’ve heard it’s a hit-or-miss book. I’m inclined to like it because it’s the perfect time of year for a creepy book and the author’s hometown is 20 minutes from me!

Boleyn InheritanceRecently finished: I finished The Boleyn Inheritance by Philippa Gregory on Sunday. It was a solid read, what I’ve come to expect from Gregory’s Tudor series. I think I’m close to reading them all now, but new ones keep coming out!

Another week of two book reviews. This time around it was Close Your Eyes, Hold Hands by Chris Bohjalian (3/5) and The Scorch Trials by James Dashner (3/5). Let me know your thoughts on these titles as well.

SamuraiReading Next: I’m missing my next book club meeting because of a test, but I’m picking back up again soon after. We’ll be reading The Samurai’s Garden by Gail Tsukiyama. I’m looking forward to it as one woman read it before and really liked it!


Leave a comment with your link and a comment (if you’re so inclined). Take a look at the other participant links in the comments and look at what others are reading.

Have any opinions on these choices?

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on GoodreadsFacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

WWW Wednesday, 16-September-2015

16 Sep

Welcome to WWW Wednesday! This meme was formerly hosted by MizB at Should be Reading and revived here on Taking on a World of Words. Just answer the three questions below and leave a link to your post in the comments for others to look at. No blog? No problem! Just leave a comment with your responses. Please, take some time to visit the other participants and see what others are reading. So, let’s get to it!

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The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


SilkwormCurrently reading:  Slow going on Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell. I don’t have a lot of time to read it so I’m not sure how soon I could finish this. My hold expires soon and I’m not sure if I can renew it so this trend might continue…
I haven’t look at I Am Malala by Malala Yousafzai yet because I’ve had Cloud Atlas. If the hold expires, I’ll get back to this one soon, but I’m almost hoping I can power through Cloud Atlas first.
Getting really close to the end of The Boleyn Inheritance by Philippa Gregory. I’m enjoying it a lot. Katherine Howard’s character is really fun to read. I hope to finish it up really soon!
I’m stopped about 2/3 of the way through Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng. It’s still interesting, but I’ve set it aside for my new audiobook…
I got The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith! I’m really excited about this one. It’s the same narrator as The Cuckoo’s Calling which is really nice. I’m enjoying the focus on publishing in this one. I bet it’s something Rowling/Galbraith knows a lot about!

Recently finished: Nothing finished this week. I know, I know, it’s my own fault because I keep putting books on hold. This is true, I can’t fight it.

Though I put out two book reviews since last week! Please check out my reviews of The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton (3 Stars) and Dark Places by Gillian Flynn (5 Stars).

Bird BoxReading Next: My book club met on Monday and I got my copy of Bird Box by Josh Malerman. I’m going to pick it up as soon as I finish The Boleyn Inherritance. I’m not putting another book on hold!


Leave a comment with your link and a comment (if you’re so inclined). Take a look at the other participant links in the comments and look at what others are reading.

Have any opinions on these choices?

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on GoodreadsFacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

WWW Wednesday, 9-September-2015

9 Sep

Welcome to WWW Wednesday! This meme was formerly hosted by MizB at Should be Reading and revived here on Taking on a World of Words. Just answer the three questions below and leave a link to your post in the comments for others to look at. No blog? No problem! Just leave a comment with your responses. Please, take some time to visit the other participants and see what others are reading. So, let’s get to it!

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The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


CloudAtlasCurrently reading:  Not much going on with Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell. The middle is dragging for me again. I liked the middle of the first half and I’m hoping that if I get past this section, it will improve again.
I checked ou I Am Malala by Malala Yousafzai again, but I’m probably not going to read it until Cloud Atlas goes away again.
More than halfway done with The Boleyn Inheritance by Philippa Gregory. I really like it. I hoped I would because Gregory’s books about the Tudors are usually my favorite.
About halfway through Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng. I like it enough, but it’s not my favorite. It’s very character driven, which is fine, but the flashback style isn’t working for me.

Invisible BridgeRecently finished: I finally finished  The Invisible Bridge by Julie Orringer! This one took me a while for a few reasons. Being interrupted a lot didn’t help, but I felt this one dragged a lot, especially at the beginning. I’ll write up a full review later, but know it won’t be glowing.

Just one book review in the last week. You can check out my thoughts on Jeannette Wall’s The Glass Castle. My book club recently met on that title so look for a book club reflection in the next few weeks.

Bird BoxReading Next: Still waiting on The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith on eAudio. After so many of you told me you enjoyed it last week, I’m looking forward to this one!
I’ve got another book club selection sneaking up on me so I’ll be reading Bird Box by Josh Malerman for our October meeting. It looks like a great creepy read!


Leave a comment with your link and a comment (if you’re so inclined). Take a look at the other participant links in the comments and look at what others are reading.

Have any opinions on these choices?

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on GoodreadsFacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!

WWW Wednesday, 2-September-2015

2 Sep

Welcome to WWW Wednesday! This meme was formerly hosted by MizB at Should be Reading and revived here on Taking on a World of Words. Just answer the three questions below and leave a link to your post in the comments for others to look at. No blog? No problem! Just leave a comment with your responses. Please, take some time to visit the other participants and see what others are reading. So, let’s get to it!

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The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?


Never ToldCurrently reading:  Slow going on Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell. I don’t have a lot of time where I’m sitting on my phone now. Not as many doctor’s appointments. I guess that’s good?
I Am Malala by Malala Yousafzai is still on hold.
Close to the end but not quite done with. The Invisible Bridge by Julie Orringer. I’m really close to the end and I’m thinking there’s no way this can end well.
I’ve just started The Boleyn Inheritance by Philippa Gregory. Not far enough into it yet to say something so look for more next week.
I’m waiting for an eAudio from the library but in the meantime, I’m starting Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng. This was a free Audible book from the Ford Audiobook Club, which is making a return so if you haven’t joined yet, I encourage you to! Free audiobooks!

Hold HandsRecently finished: Got through two! Close Your Eyes, Hold Hands by Chris Bohjalian was an audiobook I’d been excited to read. It wasn’t my favorite title by this author but was a solid story. The review will be out in a few weeks.
The second on was The Scorch Trials by James Dashner. It was a quick read and I sped through it over a weekend trip to the cabin. I wanted to read it before the movie comes out because I’m pretty sure I’ll see it even though I didn’t like the first book or first movie. I feel like they should just print money and charge me for it. Ugh.

One book review this past week. I’m not a big fan of Alice Hoffman and my review of The Museum of Extraordinary Things shows that. Take a look if you’d like.

SilkwormReading Next: I put a hold on The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith on eAudio. I hope it comes in soon!
I don’t have plans for any other books right now. I’ve got a few to get through before I start thinking of that.


Leave a comment with your link and a comment (if you’re so inclined). Take a look at the other participant links in the comments and look at what others are reading.

Have any opinions on these choices?

Until next time, write on.

You can follow me on GoodreadsFacebookTwitterPinterest, and Instagram. I’m available via email at SamAStevensWriter@gmail.com. And as always, feel free to leave a comment!