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Author Topic: Whodunnit?  (Read 1861 times)

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September 23, 2013, 12:24:59 AM

paint it Black

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Page by page, clue by clue, we curious readers have followed Cormoran Strike throughout The Cuckoo's Calling, searching for the evidence necessary to pinpoint Lula Landry's killer.  Were you clever enough to crack the case?  Was there one clue that turned the tables for you?  Were there any red herrings that threw you off the trail?  Please share with us how you used your detective skills (or tried to!) to find Lula's killer.  :sherlock:



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September 30, 2013, 08:01:14 PM
Reply #1

Dreamteam

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No, I was hopeless!  I suspected just about everyone other than the real killer, although on re-reading I could see things I should have picked up on, so I didn't realise who the killer was until Cormoran had set his trap.  I don't mind because if I could spot the killer and method before the Big Reveal I'd feel that the book hadn't been successful as a whodunnit and hadn't kept me in sufficient suspense. 
« Last Edit: October 08, 2013, 12:37:52 AM by Dreamteam »

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September 30, 2013, 10:22:15 PM
Reply #2

roonwit

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I thought it was the uncle (who I think was chief decoy by the end).
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September 30, 2013, 11:21:57 PM
Reply #3

RiverSpirit

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I was completely on the wrong track! I am re reading now to look for those clues I know I missed. Jo really knew how to throw the scent off the real culprit.
  
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October 01, 2013, 12:39:07 AM
Reply #4

Potter2005

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They made such a point of the fact that the killer had to be male that I thought the opposite.

I suspected the girlfriend of the victim's brother.
« Last Edit: October 01, 2013, 12:40:57 AM by Potter2005 »
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October 01, 2013, 10:24:58 AM
Reply #5

Kickassnoodle

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I suspected the girlfriend of the victim's brother.
Hey, me too! Though only for like a second. The clues got so convoluted so quickly that for the most part I just didn't attempt to guess at all, just enjoyed the ride. I could hardly believe it when John Bristow was revealed to be the killer, and even more so when it was revealed that Lula wasn't his first victim. Though, of course, as Strike explained everything, it all started to make sense.
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October 03, 2013, 04:22:42 PM
Reply #6

paint it Black

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Like many of you, I think I suspected most people at least very briefly.  At one point I do remember focusing on Bristow, but this threw me off:  As Strike was considering who murdered Rochelle (and he seemed to have a good suspicion as to whom the killer was), he concludes by thinking, "Like John Bristow, he [Strike] wanted justice." (p. 376)  And of course, I bought it.  Oh it can't be Bristow then, Strike believes that he wants justice for his sister's death.  It's not till the end of the book that we find that Bristow wanted a different kind of justice.  :voldemort:

The clues got so convoluted so quickly that for the most part I just didn't attempt to guess at all, just enjoyed the ride.
;D  This is what I usually do with mystery novels, lol.  I know that the author has a journey in mind for me, the reader, and I'm willing to just go along with it.  :ashamed:

I could hardly believe it when John Bristow was revealed to be the killer, and even more so when it was revealed that Lula wasn't his first victim.
I had written in my notes, Charlie also died by falling, but I never put 2+2 together with that one.   :ashamed:  I also made a note that Charlotte once threatened to jump from a building, but that never came into play later (I don't think...).

Cuppa is discussing Harper Lee's Go Set a Watchman.  Please join us!
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November 03, 2013, 02:03:44 AM
Reply #7

ss19

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No, I definitely did not guess who the killer was, and was completely shocked when I found out.  There were several people I suspected at various points though I wasn't sure, but I thought John was certainly not it!  He was just too convincing when he showed grief for his sister and determination for finding her killer.  And why would he stir up trouble for himself by hiring a private detective when the police considered the case closed and called it a suicide?

And I really liked John the whole time! ...until we found out the truth, of course. 

I was also completely shocked that John had already killed another time before.  The revelation about Charlie's death was so sad and on some level even worse than Lula's death because John was still a child and was already capable of murder.  I feared for Cormoran's life all along worrying the killer might try to kill him, and couldn't believe that he waited at his office alone for John to come to him, having no backup plan whatsoever.... He had no real weapon (unless you really want to call his prosthetic leg a weapon) and was relying on his rusty boxing skills alone to defend himself when he knew the killer would come fully prepared.  But in the end it all made sense because once he worked out that John killed his childhood best friend Charlie, it became personal for him, so I can see him risking his life in order to get that confession out of John.

Also, did anyone else think (after the fact) that it was very sneaky of Jo/Cormoran to say that he feared that the killer might be going after John and Yvette next?  That also made it seem like John was certainly not the killer if his life was in danger.  I guess Cormoran must have done that to ensure that John doesn't suspect that he has cracked the case.
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November 03, 2013, 03:50:28 PM
Reply #8

roonwit

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Like many of you, I think I suspected most people at least very briefly.  At one point I do remember focusing on Bristow, but this threw me off:  As Strike was considering who murdered Rochelle (and he seemed to have a good suspicion as to whom the killer was), he concludes by thinking, "Like John Bristow, he [Strike] wanted justice." (p. 376)  And of course, I bought it.  Oh it can't be Bristow then, Strike believes that he wants justice for his sister's death.  It's not till the end of the book that we find that Bristow wanted a different kind of justice.  :voldemort:
That was one reason why I eliminated John from my list of suspects because what he wants isn't justice . He wants just enough of the truth to come out to frame Lula's natural brother, and some perceived unfairness evened out (his mother's preference for Charlie and then Lula) but neither of those are justice to my mind.
Also, did anyone else think (after the fact) that it was very sneaky of Jo/Cormoran to say that he feared that the killer might be going after John and Yvette next?  That also made it seem like John was certainly not the killer if his life was in danger.  I guess Cormoran must have done that to ensure that John doesn't suspect that he has cracked the case.
I don't remember that being said. Strike definitely says that he is trying to prevent two more murders to Wardle at the start of Part 5, but Jo left it to the reader to work out who they were.

ETA. Okay I have just found it, it was Strike talking to John after the funeral, so I agree it is sneaky, though of course Strike isn't going to be honest about what he suspects to the murderer and the two people he talks about to Wardle aren't the same two.
« Last Edit: November 03, 2013, 04:06:20 PM by roonwit »
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November 03, 2013, 03:58:03 PM
Reply #9

HealerOne

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Also, did anyone else think (after the fact) that it was very sneaky of Jo/Cormoran to say that he feared that the killer might be going after John and Yvette next?  That also made it seem like John was certainly not the killer if his life was in danger.  I guess Cormoran must have done that to ensure that John doesn't suspect that he has cracked the case.
YES! I think that was one of the reasons I was so surprised by the 'whodunit?'! of course we all know that JKR can be very sneaky, so we shouldn't be that surprised! That clue was a great red herring! Amazing that I didn't put together that John was there at Charlie's death and then Lulu turns up dead. JKR always puts in the clues that we need to solve this stuff, if we can just get through her maze of red herrings!

I think that what ss19 said about John killing as a child is really very true. A child that could kill another with full intent of doing so seems very dangerous indeed.
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November 04, 2013, 03:12:22 PM
Reply #10

ss19

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Also, did anyone else think (after the fact) that it was very sneaky of Jo/Cormoran to say that he feared that the killer might be going after John and Yvette next?  That also made it seem like John was certainly not the killer if his life was in danger.  I guess Cormoran must have done that to ensure that John doesn't suspect that he has cracked the case.
I don't remember that being said. Strike definitely says that he is trying to prevent two more murders to Wardle at the start of Part 5, but Jo left it to the reader to work out who they were.

ETA. Okay I have just found it, it was Strike talking to John after the funeral, so I agree it is sneaky, though of course Strike isn't going to be honest about what he suspects to the murderer and the two people he talks about to Wardle aren't the same two.

Interesting.  I assumed he meant the same two people when he was talking to Wardle, except he didn't name the two then.  If Strike was referring to two different people in that conversation, who do you think he might have had in mind?  I can't think of anyone specific that John might want to go after at that point.  The only person who could incriminate him was Rochelle, wasn't it?  Unless you were thinking the two people could be Strike himself and Robin?
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November 04, 2013, 03:48:46 PM
Reply #11

Eva Hedwig

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I was not sure who the killer was, the only thing that was strange for me is that John acted very strange when the discussions came to Rochelle, but as he was the one who paid Strike, I thought it couldn't be him.

  I can't think of anyone specific that John might want to go after at that point.  The only person who could incriminate him was Rochelle, wasn't it?  Unless you were thinking the two people could be Strike himself and Robin?

One surely was his girlfriend, because she gave a fake aliby and could say different in court,that's the reason Strike told her to hide far .. far away.  the other one could be his uncle, who was childless and John may have inherited his possesions ?
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November 04, 2013, 10:44:12 PM
Reply #12

roonwit

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One surely was his girlfriend, because she gave a fake aliby and could say different in court,that's the reason Strike told her to hide far .. far away.  the other one could be his uncle, who was childless and John may have inherited his possesions ?
I imagine Tony might of been in danger due to the alibi he inadvertently gave to John when they were both supposedly at Yvette's house with Lula, and also as he could implicate John in Charlie's death. Yvette might also have been in danger (probably of an "accidental" overdose) if she wasn't as forthcoming with Lula's money as John hoped.
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November 06, 2013, 02:49:21 AM
Reply #13

ss19

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One surely was his girlfriend, because she gave a fake aliby and could say different in court,that's the reason Strike told her to hide far .. far away.  the other one could be his uncle, who was childless and John may have inherited his possesions ?
I imagine Tony might of been in danger due to the alibi he inadvertently gave to John when they were both supposedly at Yvette's house with Lula, and also as he could implicate John in Charlie's death. Yvette might also have been in danger (probably of an "accidental" overdose) if she wasn't as forthcoming with Lula's money as John hoped.

But Charlie's death happened so long ago that if John was worried that Tony could implicate him in the murder, shouldn't he have tried to do something before now?  And Jo made such a point of telling us how afraid of Tony John was that I can't really picture him trying to attack Tony (if he hasn't done it after all these years).
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