Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Career of Evil (Cormoran Strike, #3)” as Want to Read:
Career of Evil (Cormoran Strike, #3)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Career of Evil

(Cormoran Strike #3)

4.21  ·  Rating details ·  145,196 ratings  ·  13,231 reviews
Cormoran Strike is back, with his assistant Robin Ellacott, in a mystery based around soldiers returning from war.

When a mysterious package is delivered to Robin Ellacott, she is horrified to discover that it contains a woman’s severed leg.

Her boss, private detective Cormoran Strike, is less surprised but no less alarmed. There are four people from his pas
Hardcover, First North American Edition, 497 pages
Published October 20th 2015 by Mulholland Books
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Career of Evil, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
Erika According to an interview with Val McDermid, Rowling intends to continue the series:
"I really love writing these books, so I don't know that…more
According to an interview with Val McDermid, Rowling intends to continue the series:
"I really love writing these books, so I don't know that I've got an end point in mind. One of the things I absolutely love about this genre is that, unlike Harry, where there was an overarching story, a beginning and an end, you're talking about discrete stories. So while a detective lives, you can keep giving him cases."(less)

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.21  · 
Rating details
 ·  145,196 ratings  ·  13,231 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Career of Evil (Cormoran Strike, #3)
June 2018: This review is mostly going to be me responding to some of my own thoughts from my first review, with some extras thrown in; for example, how I was considering raising this to five stars because I loved Robert Glenister's narration so much. I love the dead tree versions of this book, but the audio adds another level. Highly recommend if you are so inclined. (I'm leaving my rating at 4.5, rounding down, for now, because of the ending. See below.)

Spoilery discussion of several pl
Mohammed Arabey
Feb 11, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It's The One With All the Feelings..
A tense,thrill mystery interwoven with complicated emotions, kind of love..even Nostalgia.

No matter how you imaged Strike,

Here you'll get more into him, into his Feelings specially toward his precious engaged partner, Robin..his friends,-I bet you gonna Love Shanker-..
It's The One With All the Feelings..
A tense,thrill mystery interwoven with complicated emotions, kind of love..even Nostalgia.

No matter how you imaged Strike,

Here you'll get more into him, into his Feelings specially toward his precious engaged partner, Robin..his friends,-I bet you gonna Love Shanker-..

ِ..into his past, During his..

..Career of Evil.

& No matter whether you read the previous ones or not, you'll adore the Remarkable, excellent written, relation of Strike & Robin..

This wonderful unique chemistry between them.. part admiration, part comfortable, exceptional partnership and a little bit of un-name-able kind of can-be love.
It has started 3 years ago -one year in the story timeline-,since she came to 12 Bar Cafe as an unwanted temp.

lf you read the first book that what will make you really nostalgic when you read this one..with all the characters and events developments.

And this time their relation facing a really hard time, some maniac blood and body parts craving murderer is set to sabotage Strike's career and reputation, and then..finish him.
and this murderer made clear that he's targeting Robin as a main mean to do so.
And not to mention the approaching of Robin's Wedding date to her Strike's hater fiancée, Matthew..and a huge fight that may stop the wedding that will increase the complications.

Because hard times make people more vulnerable emotionally, and relations usually get deeper. And this case made Strike and Robin face the darkest, hardest time..all that made this book the one with all the mixed feelings and emotions that very great written , as Rowling's best story telling usual..

And it's not only the feelings of Strike and Robin, You'll get more into Robin's personal life in this one since she have bigger part, and not only her... it has larger scale of Feelings..

The feeling of the amputees , and a strange mental disorder that made some healthy wanna be so. -first time to hear about this community-

The Feelings of women who unfortunately end up with the wrong guy, whether they still staying ,suffering, with them...or who from their past and left them broken and lonely..
Some of them may be just boyfriend, a stepfather, a husband, even a brother..or may be a fiancée that his girl not knowing how wrong her choice is...

And most importantly in the main story, The feeling of women and even little girls who suffered sexual abuses, from strangers or even someone close... how that change their lives ,the feeling of unsecured and sometimes the police make it hard time for the women while taking their statements.

It's really big story this time, and told you, full of feelings..

The Story
A very perfect constructed Story , with faster than the first 'Cuckoo's Calling' and larger in the main characters' life and emotions..friends and family And adversaries..

Robin -instead of Wedding party cameras- received a served woman's leg addressed to her in Cormoran's office.
It's seem to be someone want to bring Cormoran Strike's businesses down and he made a satisfying success..

Strike could think of 4, or 3 main suspect capable of doing so, they're from his past..and one of them is his late 'stepfather' who Strike already suspect he has murdered his mother..

And that's not this bloody murderer not only want vengeance of Strike, but also made it clear that he's targeting what seems to him Strike's weakness...Robin.

Why this murderer need vengeance will lead Strike to think more into his past, his career being in the Special Investigations Branch..
also will lead him into more thinking of Robin, who endanger her life keeping her work with him.. also thinking of her fast approaching Wedding to Matthew, who may take her off his life..
The life of a lone wolf..
The Lone Wolf
Yet he knew he had been left impaired, that he no longer had the capacity to feel in the way that he had once felt. Elin’s distress of the previous evening had not touched him at his core in the way Charlotte’s had once done. He felt as though his capacity for loving had been blunted, the nerve endings severed.
He had not intended to wound Elin; he did not enjoy seeing her cry; yet the ability to feel empathetic pain seemed to have closed down. A small part of him, in truth, had been mentally planning his route home as she sobbed.

No doubt whoever well read the stories of Cormoran Strike will really feel how deep and interesting character he is..

I always imaged him as Hugh Jackman, but since that I had a big backlash comments about him I changed the main photo to -BASED ON FRIENDS and GOODREADS USERS COMMENTS that mentioned other actors both on my Silkworm and this novel's pre review, I choose the most accurate ones..
Also Thank you Steph for the mention in your blog, and the idea of the particular scene of X-Men I used for Strike portrait.

It was great How Mr. Robert Galbraith described the deep feelings for a lone wolf, who had a broken heart before , not that social, haunted by his past and infamous life of his mother..and has this complicated relation with his businesses partner 'Robin'..
you can clearly see how he defend himself of admitting he truly loves her without writing direct lines, you will observe that through his actions with Robin.

Strike is really interesting character, and so is is all the characters that been mentioned before but get bigger role this time..
And it's why I really don't care much about the not-related-to-the-case stuff that the books usually full with.
And here you'll get into more of them, their and friends..and even adversaries..

The Career of Evil
Tensed fast thrilled that full of emotions and feelings and many horrible bloody scenes.
This time full of real tense and some chapters ends in a real cliffhangers.
-I am writing this review by the last 15% of the novel, with a cliffhanger dangers the continuation of Robin in the next stories.-

The novel is obsessed with the many references Blue Oyster Cult, which is have a base in the core of the novel's mystery since the murderer seems obsessed with this band as well.
You can see the phrases of their songs' lyrics in every chapter..

And, as the rest of the series, it's like a detailed Travel literature into visit many places, interesting ones..
such as -for example here-:
Barrow-in-Furness and it's gloomy streets and nuclear submarines bunkers.

The interesting Market Harborough

The Sweet entrance of Catford Shopping Centre

And many many more..

And also living the atmosphere of the time the novel taking place, here in the April-June 2011, the major thing in GB was the Royal Wedding..

And, this time, interweaving all these places and events with the main core of the story is more than marvellous.
-As the Royal Wedding and Robin Story for example-

J.K. Rowling Robert Galbraith

I guess one of the advantages of using a man , an Ex-SIB officer and actually a man, is being free to do all these bloody scenes some of it Stephen King's bloody type.

Women were so petty, mean, dirty and small. Sulky bitches, the lot of them, expecting men to keep them happy. Only when they lay dead and empty in front of you did they become purified, mysterious and even wonderful. They were entirely yours then, unable to argue or struggle or leave, yours to do with whatever you liked.

As well the great description of the murderer mind, it was also super insight into the feelings of women who suffered rape or sexual was very realistic and even the reaction of the ones near the sufferer or the toughness of some police officers is very well stated in the novel.

SO, it's still her, the Queen of Magic, master storytelling elements, getting deep into characters and their feeling, analysing body language and actions without waiting for explanations..
Humorous moments and deep meaning ones, that's what you will fall in love with this series because of this unique storytelling style.
“You could find beauty nearly anywhere if you stopped to look for it, but the battle to get through the days made it easy to forget that this totally cost-free luxury existed.”

That's , of course, if you don't mind many, or much, digressions.

Now I must go to read the last 75 pages to see what will happen to Robin...and who the bloody murderer will be...
-The Review of 9 Nov. 2015 ends here

Let's Talk the Ending..
AGAINِ, It's The One With All the Feelings...
The One with All the Emotions..
The One with All the Tense..
And all the tensed bloody thrill and slowly resolving the hard, very well constructed mystery in a thrilling double climax..

Then came the very Bittersweet Ending..

Without giving much , as a dear friend has said "Bloody Hell" or as Robin says "Bugger"
An Ending that will leave you grinning, sad a bit, feeling you wanna know more, you wanna more pages ,you don't want to leave them..
The tense..more excited I was really on the edge of my seat ,literally holding my breath..

Oh God the Ending...
(view spoiler)
these 2 last points about the ending really pissed me off, but not with the novel of is really one of my best reads

How to know you've been reading a real good,even brilliant literature..
well, I had the symptoms of loss by finishing the novel, after about 12 days of reading as slowly as possible to not end it.....
1-I was really deep thinking ,kinda haunted with the story and keeping the details in mind..,how long did it pass since we 'Strike,Robin and me' received the leg..and who will be the real murderer of the three suspects..

2- The waiter in the cafe I read at told me today "you've been in this book, for few days you've been tensed sometimes and widely grinning many times" , hell yeah I did :) ... I caught myself grinning a lot despite controlling so while I'm in public cafe, siting alone..

3- I Don't know what can I read next although I had a plan for 3 big horrors.I can't see myself committing with big novels now, may be even any novel for a day or two... I just wanna read the next Strike's novel..

So Please Mr.Galbraith.. do your best , I know you always do..:)

Mohammed Arabey
From 27 Oct. 2015
To 10 Nov. 2015

First pre- review in the (view spoiler)
(A-) 82% | Very Good
Notes: Wherein accents abound, people play pretend, men hurt women in many different ways, and Robin is really Batman.
Raeleen Lemay
Apr 28, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: adult-fiction, own

This series is definitely my favorite when it comes to the audiobooks... They're just so well done! The narrator perfectly does all of the different accents, and he sounds exactly how I would picture Cormoran Strike to sound. Audiobook comments aside, this book was pretty great! I really look forward to rereading these books in the future so I can see all of the foreshadowing I'm sure is sprinkled throughout the books, which is something Rowling is notorious for.
Apr 05, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: good-mystery

Jun 15, 2015 rated it it was ok
Sadly, I felt it as a recoil in the book series.


I was quite excited to read this third novel in the Cormoran Strike book series, since I had enjoyed plenty enough, however I think that this third novel was like a retrogression in what the book series was able to accomplish and to develop so far.

The Cuckoo’s Calling was slow pacing, drifting to irrelevant sub-plots, over detailed filling scenes and repetitive situations, along with having more pages than necessary, BUT I was adamant to any reader of my revie/>The
Lindsey Rey
Oct 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2015, favorites, mystery
Best one in the series yet!
If the first two Cormoran Strike books can be summed up as "celebrity" and "publishing" respectively, then this book is "misogynistic violence," which is possibly my least favorite subject to read about.

This is a closed circle mystery in which Robin and Strike investigate a serial killer whose past is linked to Strike. Due to the fact that there are only four real suspects that are provided by Strike - and that the killer gets his own POV sections in which you see some of the murders happen - t
Ahmad Sharabiani
Career of Evil (Cormoran Strike #3), Robert Galbraith (Pseudonym), J.K. Rowling
Career of Evil is the third novel in the Cormoran Strike series, written by J. K. Rowling and published under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith. It is preceded by The Cuckoo's Calling and The Silkworm; it will be followed by Lethal White. The novel was released on 22 October 2015 in the United Kingdom.

تاریخ نخستین خوانش: روز دهم دسامبر سال 2016 میلادی
عنوان: رد پای شیطان - کتاب سوم؛ نویسنده: جی.کی.
Aug 24, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Jesus, what a rollercoaster! I have been looking forward to this book for such a long time with a mixture of anticipation and trepidation. What if this wasn't as good as the other two in the series? What if I had somehow built up the other two books in retrospect, leaving only disappointment in the third? Would I ever stop with the rhetorical questions and get on with the review?

Let me tell you: this was fucking good. Like REALLY GODDAMNED GOOD. Like I-stayed-up-way-past-my-bedtime-to-finish-th
Oct 10, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: british, mystery
Wow, I can’t believe it’s been 2 weeks since my last review. I had two hectic weeks at work and home and had no time to read and even less to review. I hope to be able to catch up with my challenge and reviews in the following days.

Career of Evil is the third volume in Cormoran Strike series and in case you did not know, written by wonderful J.K. Rowling under the pen name of Robert Galbraith. If you haven’t read the other two books do not start with this one. They are to be read in
Chelsea Humphrey
Sep 23, 2015 rated it really liked it
Once again, left with post-novel depression as Robert Galbraith has published another well-written Strike/Ellacott novel. Boy was this a wild ride! I have felt each book in this series has grabbed my attention more than the previous one and leaves me craving another.

Set in 2011 (one year after Robin has begun working for Cormoran Strike and during the time of the royal wedding), the story opens with the ramblings of a serial killer who's identity is a mystery to the reader. Robin Ellacott has been sent
Apr 28, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2015, i-own-it
Honestly, a bit perplexed by this one. The character development was spot on, even though I'm not necessarily a fan of where I think the relationship is going between Strike & Robin. And the mystery in the end left me kind of confused. But the writing is impeccable and diving into any of Rowling's books feels like going home. I just can't get enough of her stories. This is more like a 3.5 stars but I'll round it up to 4 because I still thoroughly enjoyed it.
Apr 24, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015, owned
“You could find beauty nearly anywhere if you stopped to look for it”

I'm not entirely sure what to think now. On one hand, I am just so confused and taken by surprise. And on the other hand, I am overwhelmed and happy.

I can only say more than positive things about writing and character development. I don't need to talk about J. K. Rowling's skills as an author, we all know she is a genius. So let's talk about the characters. I like Strike more and more with every novel. And now
May 20, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This is an intense, atmospheric and compelling addition to the Cormoran Strike series. Where it really excels is in characterisation with in depth backstories of Cormoran and his history with the three main suspects in this story and his relationship with Shanker, his offbeat and eccentric friend. Robin's traumatic history is revealed, as is the reason why working as a PI is so heartbreakingly important to her. She comes across as emotionally fragile, compassionate, tenacious and highly skilled ...more
Seeing the blurb for this book made me have this reaction:

Reading this book made me have this reaction:

In some ways, this book was less intense than the impossibly disgusting, Hannibal-level grossness of The Silkworm. On the other hand, Galbraith's third benefits from taking a look into the dark personal histories of both Strike and Robin - specifically, the fact that they both have violent crime in t
Paula Kalin
Career of Evil, the 3rd book in the Cormoran Strike series by J.K. Rowling is terrific and a favorite series of mine. This book did not disappoint. A little different in that Cormoran is not hired, but on a self-made journey with his partner, Robin Ellacott, to find a killer.

When a body part arrives for Robin at the office, the two of them set off to look at three men from Strike's past: his stepfather and two ex-soldiers, one a pedophile. Quite a gruesome trail is followed.

I really
Andrew Smith
Apr 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A package delivered to a private investigator’s office in London contains the severed leg of a woman. Who sent this, and why? A note contained in the package that appears to be an extract from the lyrics of a song by the rock band the Blue Oyster Cult might offer a clue. The investigator, Cormoran Strike, is upset that his female partner was exposed to such a brutal discovery – for it was she the package was addressed to – but he thinks he can boil the list of perpetrators down to one of four me ...more
Helene Jeppesen
Oct 31, 2015 rated it really liked it
This book was amazing, and despite its size of 500 pages I read it in merely two days. Robert Galbraith, aka J. K. Rowling, seems to be the only author that can make me truly interested in crime stories, because normally they bore me as well as frustrate me (I can never seem to guess who the murderer is).
Reading this third book in the Cormoran Strike series felt like coming home. I felt safe among some of my favourite characters, Robin and Strike, and because of them I read most of this book wi
Aug 01, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I always look forward to picking up a book by J.K. Rowling. From Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone through to this current novel she has never put a foot wrong and I firmly believe she could write successfully in any genre. A truly talented author.
Career of Evil is the third in a series which hopefully will be a long one! The two mai
Oct 21, 2015 rated it it was ok
Despite the fact that I love and adore Rowling for Harry Potter stories, I am disappointed to find, as an adult, how formulaic and simplistic her writing has become.

Career of Evil takes a darker turn to the first two novels in the Cormoran Strike series, and while I’m not entirely sure how I feel about this sudden change of
Laurie Anderson
Jul 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing
JK Rowling continues to astonish me. First, of course, with her Harry Potter books she created a world to which I return over and over as a delighted and bedazzled reader. Her accomplishment with that series marks her as a once-in-a-generation storyteller.

But she also writes adult mystery/crime novels under the pseudonym of Robert Galbraith. And they are very, very good, especially this one, her third that follows the adventures of private detective Cormoran Strike.

I'm astonished at
Robin (Bridge Four)
Sale Alert: Kindle Daily Deal 14Jul19 $3.99

3.5 Fish and Crisps Stars

I really do enjoy the gumshoe investigation stories that are The Cormoran Strike series. In this particular installment I enjoyed the actual case more than in the other two stories for a few reasons. One is that the nature of this case is more personal. It all begins right off when Robin is sent a leg in the mail. I don’t think it gets more personal than that and to our surprise Cormoran can think of about 4 people from his past capa/>3.5
Nov 18, 2015 rated it it was ok
2.5 stars

The writing in this was top notch as usual but half the time reading this felt like a chore. All the parts were there but it didn't feel the same.

There were long stretches where I was bored but still kept going because I wanted to know what would happen. I had two guesses as to who the killer was fairly early and went back and forth as to who it was as the story went on.

Robin and Strike were a great team as usual. There were some cases where I thought he should
Oct 18, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Violent, hateful, misogynistic. And worst of all, boring.
Ashley *Hufflepuff Kitten*
3.5 stars, rounded up to 4 because Jo's characterizations are brilliant.

I feel like I don't know where to start! This felt really consistent with the first two books (that is, if you liked them, you'll probably like this one too) and I lovelovelove Robin. Also, thanks to Kaora, I'll now and forever picture Strike as Liev Schreiber. Thanks ;) My original mental image of Brian d'Arcy James got scrapped because Liev is just too perfect. ANYWAY.

The Robin/Strike dynamic is wonderful and
Book #3 in the Cormoran Strike series by Robert Galbraith (aka JK Rowling) is another great episode which features Strike and his able assistant Robin Ellacott. It was when Robin received a strangely shaped package by courier – which she thought would be wedding paraphernalia for her upcoming nuptials with fiancé Matthew – and discovered a woman’s leg, that the business began to falter, and both Robin’s and Strike’s lives changed.

As Robin and Strike focused on finding the perpetrator, the polic
3.5 to 4 Stars

Enjoyable and creepy. Lots of shocking detail and action.

However, with all of the Cormoran Strike mysteries - I have always found that around 75% through the resolution it falls a bit flat. In each I was like, oh, here we are at the end and this is what happened. Okay, I guess . . .

I will keep reading this series because I enjoy the characters and the details, but I hope it the future to be surprised and excited by the ending.
Jun 24, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

Epic cliffhanger. Cruel cliffhanger! This book was everything!!!! *major heart eyes*

This instalment was definitely my favourite out of three. The character development was excellent. We explored and delved a lot more deeper into the pasts of both Strike and Robin, which was quite dark, but you can't help but love these two! Individually, they're amazing. Together, they would be even more amazing. Make it happen, Rowling!

The plo

One would think that after being devastated by the completion of the Harry Potter series that I would not want to take on another JK Rowling series.

I know, I know! Who am I kidding?! Of COURSE I wanted to read another JKR series! She’s a brilliant writer and a story teller extraordinaire!

I’ve never been a fan of mysteries. I never really disliked them, but they always fell flat for me. They felt predictable and like they were written via a Top Secret Formula. Person A is found dead in a pool o
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »

Readers also enjoyed

  • The Casual Vacancy
  • Смертельная белизна (Иностранная литература. Современная классика)
  • The Trespasser (Dublin Murder Squad #6)
  • The Witch Elm
  • Broken Harbor (Dublin Murder Squad, #4)
  • A Better Man (Chief Inspector Armand Gamache, #15)
  • The Lost Man
  • Beautiful Ruins
  • The Secret Place (Dublin Murder Squad #5)
  • The 7½ Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle
  • Kingdom of the Blind (Chief Inspector Armand Gamache, #14)
  • One Good Turn (Jackson Brodie, #2)
  • Gone Girl
  • The Likeness (Dublin Murder Squad, #2)
  • The Sentence is Death (Hawthorne, #2)
  • Case Histories (Jackson Brodie #1)
  • The Word Is Murder (Hawthorne, #1)
  • In the Woods (Dublin Murder Squad #1)
See similar books…
This is a pseudonym for J.K. Rowling, the author of the Harry Potter series and The Casual Vacancy.

NOTE: There is more than one author with this name on Goodreads.
Robert Galbraith - Marine Biologist

Rowling was born to Anne Rowling (née Volant) and Peter James Rowling, a Rolls-Royce aircraft engineer, on 31 July 1965 in Yate, Gloucestershire, England, 10 miles (16 km) northeast of Bristol. Her mother Anne was half/>

Other books in the series

Cormoran Strike (5 books)
  • The Cuckoo's Calling (Cormoran Strike, #1)
  • The Silkworm (Cormoran Strike, #2)
  • Lethal White (Cormoran Strike #4)
  • Untitled (Cormoran Strike, #5)
“You could find beauty nearly anywhere if you stopped to look for it, but the battle to get through the days made it easy to forget that this totally cost-free luxury existed.” 87 likes
“I do," said Robin in a ringing voice, looking straight into the eyes, not of her stony-faced new husband, but of the battered and bloodied man who had just sent her flowers crashing to the floor.” 30 likes
More quotes…