Collection site: How we can know if the Strike Cast Twitterers have the inside scoop.

Speculation abounds on whether the assorted Cormoran Strike characters  who opened Twitter accounts in July and August (E.g. @AlabastorFair, @AnomieInkBlack, @IlsaHerbertOS, @Spellacott) are insiders with a sneak peak at the manuscript (which is, as of this writing, a couple of weeks away) or just uber-fans with too much time on their hands throwing the online equivalent of a midnight release party. There is a spectrum of possibilities:

  1. JKR/RG herself is behind all the tweets. Highly unlikely. But, personally, if managing all these accounts left her less time to tweet about trans issues, this would suit me fine.
  2. An editor or some other employee of the publisher is tweeting, in order to drum up excitement about the book prepublication.
  3. Some fan group has been given a sneak peak at the manuscript, and is tweeting with the knowledge and blessing of the publishers, likely with their content vetted closely.
  4. Some fan group has illicitly gotten hold of a copy, and is having some fun, while at the same time being decent enough not to drop any spoilers.
  5. Some fan group is just having fun, with no more knowledge than the rest of us.

Can we do a little detective work of our own to determine which of those possibilities is true? Join me after the jump to see.

I have to assume that the “real-time events” referred to in the tweets, such as Ilsa thanking Polworth for mowing her mother’s lawn, and Pat Ubering a flask of coffee to the team on a stakeout are simple jokes. However, something occasionally drops that is a hint about a permanent quality or attribute of the character, that has not been revealed (yet!) in the book. If any of those facts are confirmed in The Ink Black Heart, we’ll know we have someone with the inside scoop. For example:

If Lucy’s birthday turns out to be March 15. That is the date that is listed on her @LucyBoyMum profile page.  Lucy and Strike are usually said to be 2 years apart in age; for instance, they were taken to the Norfolk commune when they were aged 6 and 8 respectively. Now that “newborn” Lucy’s age has been corrected to “2 1/2” in in Jan 1979, when her 4 year old brother started school in St. Mawes, this gives her a birthday in early-to-mid 1976, roughly a year and a half after Strike’s birth in November 1974. March 15 would certainly fit the bill, making her born 1 year 4 months after her brother. Maybe Strike and Robin will attend her 39th in March 2015, or, if the case drags on, her 40th in March 2016.  That would be a nice parallel with Strike being photographed at Lucy’s 30th with Tracey. 

If Ciara Porter starts Cambridge.  @AlabastorFair, when asked if she was starting Cambridge, responded:

This means she presumably did her degree in the interim between Cuckoo’s Calling (2010) and now (2022). Presumably it is earlier, if Cambridge is a “distant memory” in 2022.  Will a random glance at a newstand in IBH see her as a cover girl with a “World’s Most Beautiful Coed” headline?

If Jonny Rokeby likes his tea with milk.  This is one I’m quite proud of!  If Strike does agree to meet the Deadbeat Dad, and is offered a cup of the milky tea that he despises, I’m sure that would only fan the flames of his resentment. 

Has anyone else gleaned any attributes from the tweets that could test this hypothesis? I must say, if this is a publicity stunt, it is not especially effective, given the relatively few followers the Strike Twitter Cast of Characters have. Pat Chauncey has the most, at a scant 54, or less than 0.0004% of what Rowling has. If JKR is behind the tweets, then this is practically a stealth mission. 

Next mystery to solve:  How is @TheWolfgangDog, described as “elderly” in 2014, still with us in 2022?


  1. Lucy’s birthday is also the Ides of March!

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