Meet the Characters
Cormoran Strike and his partner Robin Ellacott are alike in many ways, but also couldn’t be more different; whether its their upbringings, their personalities, or even their outlook on life; but together they work as a seamless partnership; like most other successful crime-solving duos throughout history.
And alongside Strike and Robin, we’re introduced to a wide range of characters, some of whom in the individual crimes, and some who continue to have their presence felt throughout.
Born in 1974 and raised in Cornwall, everything in Cormoran Strike’s life has led to him being the incredible Private Investigator that he becomes. After a wildly unconventional upbringing, and a successful career in the army, he amasses the skills he needs to identify and understand the nuances of people, vital for detective work, and opens his own agency in London.
Yorkshire born and raised, but moving to London with her ambitious, long term boyfriend, Matthew, Robin Ellacott first meets Cormoran Strike as a temp at his Detective agency. With a longstanding passion for psychology, Robin is immediately captivated by the work of the agency, displaying initiative and a natural talent for detective work, quickly proving her value as more than the temp job for which she was initially employed.
Charlotte Ross, née Campbell
Charlotte Campbell, daughter of 60s It Girl Tula Clermont, and academic and broadcaster Sir Anthony Campbell, had a privileged yet incredibly troubled upbringing, leading to an overwhelming presence of drama throughout her life, including running away from school, stints in rehab, and a stepfather that tried to commit her. All of which set the scene for her turbulent relationship with Strike.
We’re introduced to Matthew as Robin’s dependable fiancé. An accountant who loves watching and playing rugby, Matthew is a ‘clean-cut, square-jawed Yorkshireman’. He is naturally good looking, and the antithesis of Strike’s rough-hewn appeal. Robin is keen for the two men central to her life to get along with each other, but there’s an unavoidable tension between them before they meet that doesn’t get any better with time.
Nick and Ilsa Herbert
Strike first met Ilsa at school in Cornwall, developing a friendship that emulates the fondness and warm feelings that Strike has for the county. Meeting Nick at secondary school was the catalyst that eventually led to the pairing up with Ilsa, and both of them settling into a comfortable and happy married life, albeit not without its challenges. Despite their high powered careers, they provide Strike with security, support and reassurance when he needs it most…as well as a good dose of brutal honesty when the situation requires it.
By the time Vanessa joins the cast of characters in Career of Evil, Robin has become business partner to Strike in his Detective agency, and is realising that her relationship with Matthew might not be the be-all and end-all that she had previously thought. Vanessa comes along at the perfect time, both by being a superb Police officer to help with the current case, and also by being able to impart advice to Robin based on her own relationship experiences – something that Robin is grateful for and reassured by.
The first of the Strike novels, The Cuckoo’s Calling, introduces us to the world of Lula Landry, and the glamorous, but fickle, world of modelling. With Robin having just started at Strike’s Detective agency, they’re taken from one side of London to another in their quest for the truth about what happened to Lula that snowy night in West London.