Can you tell us what The Cuckoo’s Calling is all about?
It starts with the death of a supermodel, Lula Landry, whose brother approaches Cormoran Strike because he doesn’t quite believe she committed suicide. The Cuckoo’s Calling is about Cormoran Strike’s investigation.
Where does your character Robin fit into that?
Robin joins Cormoran Strike at the very beginning of The Cuckoo’s Calling as a temporary secretary. But she’s very practical and quite savvy and intelligent. We find out later that detective work is something she’s always been interested in, and she proves her worth as more than just a temporary secretary during the course of the series.
Did you read the books before you started work on the show?
Yes I did – I think it’s important to and J.K. Rowling writes so fantastically. I had a very clear idea of who Cormoran Strike was and also who Robin was, every woman I’ve spoken to who has read the books loves Robin and can see themselves in her. Once you’ve read them, that is your research and your preparation done. After reading the series, I feel like I would know exactly what Robin would do in a situation, or my interpretation of her anyway.
What do you think Robin’s characteristics are that so many can relate to?
Robin is practical and passionate and very grounded. But she’s also compassionate, empathetic and loyal. She feels like a very centered and grounded, strong woman, even though she doesn’t have a lot of life experience. She’s grown up in a small town and left university early. In a sense, because of what she’s been through during university, she feels emotionally wiser than her years and I think that feeds into why she’s good at her job; she’s interested in psychology and she has a natural aptitude for that because she’s naturally very compassionate.
Did you think that Charlotte was a foil for Robin, that you put them against each other and they’re poles apart?
There’s clearly something that attracts Cormoran to Robin immediately, which we know from the hints of that through the book and certainly in the show. We don’t know very much about Charlotte, apart from the tiny bits we glean through Strike’s thoughts in the book and flashbacks in the series. It feels like Robin is the antithesis of her in some respects in that Robin is very honest, very loyal. Charlotte isn’t. There’s something quite dark and complex and untrustworthy about Charlotte that you don’t quite understand her. I think that Robin is a lot more of an open book.
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