I recently finished reading the third book of Robert Galbraith aka J. K. Rowling’s Cormoran Strike novel. What impressed me the most was the way the characters, especially that of Robin Ellacott, has developed.

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When we first came across Robin’s character, she is newly engaged and looking for a job. By the end of the third book, she has shouldered equal responsibilities in Strike’s detective business.

Of the three books, in “Career of Evil”, (Click here for book review) her character truly flourishes. Let us go through some of the most iconic lines from this book that showcase the wonderful character development.

At the age of eight, she had informed her brothers that she was going to catch robbers and had been roundly mocked, for no better reason than that she ought to be laughed at, given that she was a girl and their sister.

Little girls are always expected to be playing with dolls and house…or pretending to be a teacher. A girl expressing more “manly” interest in professions that are traditionally manly are never taken seriously. Even till this date, if one wants to buy a gift for a 6-year-old girl, you will find yourself in the same-shade-of-barbie-pink dolls, clothes or games with fashion or cooking involved… You do not come across a science or a detective set in the “girls” section.

Till the time this happens, how on Earth to we expect to gain equality?

Out of exhaustion and a feeling of obligation to the family that had been so protective and loving in her time of greatest need she had left a lifelong ambition fall by the wayside, and everyone else had been satisfied to see it go.

How many times has it happened that a female has to let go of her dreams/ aspirations/ career for her family? Studies over? Get married…Getting married? Leave job…Had a baby? Leave job…Husband gets transferred? Leave job…The family does not like a working daughter in law? Leave job…There are so many hurdles…

The society has set an expectation from females…that her career or her dreams and aspirations always come secondary to the family’s wishes…

Strike: “She is my partner. We work the same jobs.”

This shows that Cormoran sees Robin truly as his equal. He stands up to her when others refuse to acknowledge her as his partner.Way to go Cormoran!

Her infidelity would be worse than his by his defination.

This is so true for most of the cases. When a man cheats, he makes a mistake…but the same man can hardly forgive the woman for her infidelity. In most cultures, a man’s infidelity is seen lightly and is brushed aside with a shrug and “men will be men”.But a woman who cheats have always faced the worst scorn from the society, in extreme cases even death (See: Stoning of Soraya M.).

Robin: Decide whether I’m your partner or a – a liability. If you can’t rely on me – if you can’t let me run the same risks you do – then I’d rather….rather get out”She finished.

Many times women are seen as a “liability”..by her family or by her seniors or colleagues. There is nothing worse than this line of thought. The whole “Paraya Dhan” nonsense or viewing females as weak or assuming that we will not be able to undertake certain tasks, without bothering to ask us if we can or cannot do it, is IRRITATING. Just like men, different women have different strengths, and it’s downright stupid to label us all as “the weak gender”.

Can’t you understand that I’d much rather help catch him than sit around waiting for him to pounce?

I loved this line by Robin. This shows that she is indeed a strong character. She does not want to sit around, being protected, but wants to go out and do something about it!

These were some of my observation…still there are a few more points that I will be posting later..have you read this book? What are your thoughts?

Click here for part 2