Sunday, and we’re having goulash again in this post

We had goulash when I was a kid, though it wasn’t cooked in a cauldron and seemed to be more of a stew with all the leftovers in the fridge stirred into it. It usually had paprika in it or, if it didn’t, I sprinkled it across the top of my bowl at the table.

  • In the novel in progress, the main character is a long-time student of Karate. How do I communicate what her outlook on life is like? I wondered. I’ve found Funakoshi’s book The Twenty Guiding Principles of Karate to be very helpful.  Those of us who appreciate a rather Zen-like approach to life, find much to like in this little book.
  • When a friend learned I was just finishing Robert Galbraith’s (aka JK Rowling) Troubled Blood, she wondered whether I thought she might like it. I told her she was on her own this time in making that decision. Why? The book features an old-style detective and is very long, very British (people are always stopping for tea), has a lot of characters in it, and takes its time working through a complex plot to the final showdown. I liked it, but then I’m old and eccentric. I’ve read most of the books in the Comoran Strike series and will probably read the next one.
  • My wife and I are staying away from the news, and have recently enjoyed watching “Bull Durham,” “No Time to Die,” and “The Great Escape” as alternatives. (A long Robert Galbraith novel will also distract you from the shootings and the ongoing blunders in Congress.)
  • Ploughing along Sun Road – KULR photo

    Our Georgia heatwave has backed off a bit from those 100° heat index days from earlier in the week to a balmy 89°. Meanwhile, Montana’s Glacier Park is having heavy snow with a chance of avalanches. Gosh, Mother Nature needs to get things under control. And then there are floods around Yellowstone. If I had a choice, I’d select the snow–but not the avalanches.

  • Today is Father’s Day, and my daughter and granddaughters are way up in Maryland while I’m miles away in Georgia. Thank goodness Facebook gives us a way to remember the holiday. My father has been gone since 1987. Not sure he would grok the Internet or Facebook, but he would remember this picture taken near Santa Cruz, CA when I was little. Yes, I come from the San Francisco Bay Area and had family all over the place in that area when I was little. I’m the kid on the right who seems to be either cold or scared.
  • When I see these old pictures of my parents, I’m very concerned about the pictures of me my daughter and granddaughters will be showing people 50 years from now. I don’t think I’m going to look as good as my parents looked.
  • In more mudane news, Facebook has yet to fix the software glitch on my author’s page. If they keep stonewalling me, I’ll probably delete the page before the week is over. c’est la vie

–Malcolm

Enjoying another Robert Galbraith Novel

Troubled Blood (2020), at over 900 pages, will take me a while to finish. But that’s good. I enjoy the series about an old-style private detective who doesn’t solve cases by hacking into traffic cams, bank accounts, or FBI databases. Instead, we have stakeouts, interviews, following suspects, and a lot of experience on the resume of British Detective Cormoran Strike. If you know the novels by Agatha Christie, Arthur Conan Doyle, and P. D. James, you’ll have an idea of how Strike works.

This is the fifth book in the series that began with The Cuckoo’s Calling in 2013 and that will continue this August with The Ink Black Heart. The books are long, well-written, and credible within the genre. By now, everyone who reads these books knows that Galbraith is J. K. Rowling’s pseudonym. She got panned for The Casual Vacancy in 2013, mainly because readers expected something magical like the Harry Potter series. I liked the novel a lot.

But after that experience, I can understand why she would want to start fresh–as she said with no expectations–with the Galbraith pen name for her detective series. Unfortunately, she didn’t get to do it because her lawyer’s office spilled the beans, although in what was supposed to be a private conversation. She sued and the lawyer was fined.

I’ve read all the books in the series but one. I plan to keep reading when the next installment comes out in August. Several of the books have become movies, though I haven’t seen them.

Publisher’s Description for Troubled Blood

Private Detective Cormoran Strike is visiting his family in Cornwall when he is approached by a woman asking for help finding her mother, Margot Bamborough—who went missing in mysterious circumstances in 1974.
 
Strike has never tackled a cold case before, let alone one forty years old. But despite the slim chance of success, he is intrigued and takes it on; adding to the long list of cases that he and his partner in the agency, Robin Ellacott, are currently working on. And Robin herself is also juggling a messy divorce and unwanted male attention, as well as battling her own feelings about Strike.
 
As Strike and Robin investigate Margot’s disappearance, they come up against a fiendishly complex case with leads that include tarot cards, a psychopathic serial killer and witnesses who cannot all be trusted. And they learn that even cases decades old can prove to be deadly . . .

Typical of Rowling, the Robert Galbraith website will tell you everything you want to know (and then some) about the series.

Malcolm