If you can’t use a polyjuice potion to deter unwanted attention for your new novel, it’s time to take on a pen-name. Or at least that’s what Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling’s mindset was when writing the novel The Cuckoo’s Calling under the name Robert Galbraith. Deadline reports that over the weekend, Rowling revealed that what was thought to be a stunning debut from a new author actually ended up being a best-seller’s first foray into detective novels.
The Cuckoo’s Calling was released in April to high acclaim, but little fanfare, as the novel had only sold 1,500 copies prior to news of the pseudonym being released. However, sales have since skyrocketed and the book is currently out of stock on Amazon. The Cuckoo’s Calling follows war-vet Cormoran Strike, who loses a leg in Afghanistan and becomes a private investigator. Shortly after he enters his field, he’s thrust into a high-profile case of a legendary supermodel Lula Landry.
“I had hoped to keep this secret a little longer because being Robert Galbraith has been such a liberating experience,” J.K. Rowling told The Sunday Times. “It has been wonderful to publish without hype or expectation and pure pleasure to get feedback under a different name.” While it’s clear that Rowling’s talent alone will garner high praise, her name holds quite a bit of her commercial success.
The book was published by Little Brown’s Sphere, publisher of Rowling’s most recent novel, The Casual Vacancy. Little Brown’s Sphere is set to release the second book of The Cuckoo’s Calling series next year. A reprint of The Cuckoo’s Calling already set for release.