Lethal White: Have You Got Your Copy?

It is Lethal White publication day at last! I have three questions for you about what you’re doing and thinking about today, a day something like Christmas in September for Galbraith readers and Serious Strikers.

(1) Did your local bookseller carry Lethal White? The OKC airport book store where I scored three copies of Career of Evil several days in advance of publication in 2015, not only didn’t have early release Lethal White first editions for purchase, they had also opted out of selling the book in its first month of availability. More shocking, Full Circle Bookstore, the largest independent bookseller in Oklahoma didn’t have copies but “we would be happy to order one for you.” I was sent an ePub version yesterday and bought a 30% copy at Barnes and Noble this morning. I’m guessing the Amazon and B&N deep discounts kept the smaller poutlets from trying to compete.

(2) What is your plan for reading Lethal WhiteI had the day off today, so I started reading my ePub version late last night when I got off work at my Muggle job and read until 4:00 this morning. When I woke up, my wife gave me the hard cover edition and I read until 7:00 PM for my first read-through. I’ll start posting on content and charting the 69 chapters with prologue and epilogue tomorrow. How are you tackling Strike4?

(3) What Lethal White questions do you have and which topics are you most interested in discussing in the coming weeks at HogwartsProfessor.com? Yes, there is a lot of ‘white horse’ material to sort through (Ibsen!) and I’ll definitely be doing a score-card review of our plot predictions vs Galbraith’s actual story, a post on the Goblet of Fire and Cuckoo’s Calling echoes in Strike 4, a listing of the Twitter picture headers that showed up in text, and some short pieces on throwaway references in Lethal White to a coffee cup with an image of Johnny Cash and to paintings by Stubbs (allusions, I think, to novels by Margery Allingham and P. D. James). But, as we leave the gate on the back of white horses for a month of Lethal White running conversation, what do you want to talk about?

Enjoy your first reading — and please take a minute to share your experience and preferences in the comment boxes below!


  1. Karen Kebarle says

    My local Chapters had copies of the book, though I had to hunt around a bit to find it in the Mystery section, so I bought one at about 3:30 pm today. I have been reading bits of it whenever I could since then, but had to stop to prep for class tomorrow. I will read it whenever I can fit it in. I want to hurry and know what’s in the novel, yet on the other hand want to savour the first reading.

  2. I don’t have a copy yet. I’m trying to be good and wait to get it from the local library. I was # 45 on the wait list and they purchsed 30 copies so I dropped to # 15 today. Unless 15 peole neglect to pick up their hold,I think I’ve got a few weeks wait at least. Agonizing!

  3. Bought it yesterday and read it. The whole thing. I always go back and read JKR’s books many times so I’m sure there will be new discoveries to come, but for now, without getting spoilery, I’ll say that I found it extremely satisfying and well done, and I’m also really wondering what comes next–and how Jo will keep things fresh and suspenseful.

  4. I’ve got my copy, I’m currently on chapter 4 as of this writing, and I’m torn between wanting to tune in to the blog, and wanting to drop out of circulation temporarily until I’m finished with the book to avoid spoilers.

    On the other hand, I’m one of those readers who likes a clear picture of what I’m getting.

    I might wind up having to split the difference, where I tune in here on occasion just to see what’s up, and take the risks. So far, though, it has been both interesting and frustrating and the same time. My one fear is that character and incident are dissociated in such a way that the story is robbed of both human and narrative interest.

    I’m starting to learn that the best written character can come off as flat if he or she doesn’t have an interesting set of narrative circumstances to give them an involving imaginative life. The same seems to apply to narrative events, as witnessed by all the cookie-cutter action films glutting Hollywood. It therefore seems that all the best stories are not a delicate balance, so much as a successful molding where Character and Plot become one and the same. This could be an unexamined aspect of what made the first two books work so well.

  5. Beatrice Groves says

    Bought mine yesterday from Blackwell’s – Oxford’s superb independent bookshop. They were making no fuss whatsoever – had to ask to find the (small) pile and the assistant clearly thought I was crazy expecting it be there on publication day). It was on half-price, small window display, at Waterstones at the other end of Broad St – I assume Blackwell’s thought no-one would therefore bother with their full price version.

    Decided in its honour to go walking in the Vale of the White Horse today and read some over my lunch in view of the chalk White Horse (although this was a difficult feat in one of the windiest days Britain has ever seen). So went into The White Horse pub to read the chapter set in a pub of that name…

  6. Louise Freeman says

    How neat that you got to read the book in view of the horse and pub! The closest I got was a cup of tea the color of creosote.

  7. Beatrice Groves says

    Yes, it was such a lovely day! And a little jump of pleasure when I found that Billy’s childhood home was in Woolstone (the village I was in). Being late to the party with HP predictions, it was most enjoyable to join in this time….! http://www.mugglenet.com/2018/09/lethal-white-horses/

  8. I’m currently re-reading Lethal White and marking pages that hold things I want to really look into in more detail. I am fascinated by all of the echoes and parallels that people here have already pointed out between Goblet of Fire and Cuckoo’s Calling with Lethal White.

    Since Jonny Rokeby still didn’t make an appearance in Lethal White–I am especially marking any mention of Charlotte while re-reading Lethal White. I plan on really looking into the possibility that was brought up about maybe Charlotte being the real antagonist in the CS series. No real sign yet of any major villain action from Charlotte–but there were clear mentions by Cormoran during his enforced time sitting in public with Charlotte at the high end restaurant she had tricked him into taking her; he could once again detect signs of her (Morrigan) shape shifting from her eyes and in her manner during the minimal interactions they had.

    I’m also re-reading the Order of the Phoenix since I really think you are on to something about the echoes from HP. Just going over the overview of Order of the Phoenix (book 5 of the HP series), I was hit by a thought that something I had feared was about to happen in LW (but didn’t) concerning Cormoran’s on-going (but seems to be escalating) troubles with his leg, made me think that it was becoming almost impossible for him to physically keep going and it might be that he finally would end up confined to a hospital bed again. So I was struck while reading the OOTP overview, that since this is the book that introduces readers to the Dementors–I wondered what would represent Dementors to Cormoran? The obvious answer seemed to be his hatred of hospitals and having doctors and nurses constantly hovering over him. The fear of being unable to do what he needed to do physically–literally feeling as if its sucking the life out of him.

    Also there could be a bit of a “reverse echo” in book 5 of Strike since the Order of the Phoenix is a secret organization outside the official Ministry of Magic and right at the end of LW–Strike and Robin finally find themselves inside the Met on good terms. So maybe the “dense and corrupt” Cornelius Fudge and Dolores Umbridge characters would be in an echo in CS 5–be two corrupt cohorts on the outside of official channels?

    I really hope the theory of the echoes and parallels keeps going because it is in book 5 of HP that Harry finally gets some real information about his connection to Voldemort and what that connection really means in his past and future. I am hoping that book 5 of CS will be a treasure trove of pieces we need to start to really see what happened in 1994 when Leda Strike was murdered and Cormoran went into the army.

  9. Brian Basore says

    My copy arrived by mail yesterday. I’ve liked The Author’s writing ‘voice’ since the first sentence of the first HP book, and this book sounds like her telling the story, so I am predisposed to like that in this book too.

    I have this blog to give me background for what she’s saying. Thanks, John and all.

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