Troubled Blood Week Placeholder Post #3: Parallels with Cuckoo’s Calling (and other Strike Books). More Spoilers.

Because of the many parallels between Philosopher’s Stone and Order of the Phoenix, Headmaster John has speculated we could see a lot fo echoes of Cuckoo’s Calling in Troubled Blood.  Did you find any?  If so, add them to the comments.  Somehow, I doubt we’ll break the Lethal White record, but who knows?

Spoilers after the jump.

The biggest one for me was the reversal of the CC opening.  Robin arrives at Denmark Street deliriously happy over being engaged to the Flobberworm, only to be knocked down and injured, accidentally, by Strike.  The opposite happens here— Cormoran accidentally hits Robin in the face at the American Bar, then, in the aftermath, she hears his declaration of friendship–  and explicitly thinks that this is the happiest she has been since the engagement.

There are others:  Cormoran getting drunk in front of Robin for only the second time, the mention of all 6 other Rokeby-spawn, the name Annabel (once Robin’s fake Australian identity to fool the temp agency, now her niece), but nothing as huge as the injury-reversal.

Add more the to comments, Strike-readers!


  1. Louise Freeman says

    Some more Cuckoo’s Calling echoes:
    Killer revealed to have started killing in childhood, and also to have drowned someone.
    Strike tapes killer’s confession by cell at the end.
    Strike is pestered by Rokeby-underlings, and a there is a reference to Rokeby being invited to insert his money into a particular body cavity and set it alight.
    There is a funeral and cremation.
    Norfolk commune is mentioned again as worst place Leda ever took them.
    Book ends with Strike getting Robin a gift.

  2. Another parallel: the surname Hickson. Here we have Irene Hickson, while in Cuckoo’s we have Marleen Hickson, Lula’s biological mom.

  3. Louise Freeman says

    Nice catch on the surname!
    When Talbot’s son says that it feels like his dad wants Strike to have the notebook, it sounds like John Bristow saying it felt like Charlie was wanting him to hire Strike.
    There was a reference to Strike being removed from an affluent private school, just like in CC (though we were told there that Shumba was the instigator, not Leda). Here, we learn that, apparently, these affluent schools happened twice. One was presumably the one where he met Charlie Bristow; I wonder if we will hear about the second in Book 7? I have an earlier post where I tried to piece some of the childhood transitions together:
    We also have nasty-but-wealthy John’s in the start of the series: John Bristow in CC, while John is one of the names the Bigamist goes by in TB.

  4. Louise Freeman says

    When Robin is in her Masham room disliking the Christmas perfume her mother got her, she muses “about the disparity between the way people would like to be seen, and the way others prefer to see them” This is a lot like her explanation of Johari’s window in CC: “how well we know ourselves, and how well others know us.”

  5. Two jumped out at me.
    — The killers in both books bear the same initials
    — Two witnesses who prove crucial to the case, Rochelle Onifade and Samhain Athorn, are described as having similar sounding, “rocking” gaits.

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