Monday, September 27, 2010

Baker Street Letters by Michael Robertson

Sherlock Holmes has become so real to us that folks will write to him care of Baker Street to ask his advice. Richard Green has the task of responding to the letters which continue to arrive at 221B Baker Street (now the Abbey National Building Society). He collected and published a selection of these letters in Letters to Sherlock Holmes back in 1986.

Michael Robertson adopts this engaging premise in Baker Street Letters. Set in present time, two lawyer brothers occupy premises on Baker Street. As part of their lease agreement, they are obliged to answer letters addressed to Sherlock Holmes. Brother Nigel has this responsibility, which he normally executes with formulaic letters. However, one letter, written twenty years previously, in crayon, by a child asking for help locating her missing father, captures his attention. More recent letters arrive asking for the return of documents sent in connection with this case. Nigel is intrigued and travels to Los Angeles to investigate.

Brother Reggie, the more successful of the two, is alarmed to find his office manager's body in Nigel's office. As the bodies pile up and Nigel is being investigated by police on two continents, Reggie must find his brother first.

A fast-paced, entertaining chase based on this most interesting premise. Robertson will follow up this first offering in the series in 2011 with The Brothers of Baker Street.

The Strange Return of Sherlock Holmes by Barry Grant - "The original super-sleuth, Sherlock, is back on the case - When James Wilson retires from journalism, he decides to settle down in Herefordshire with a room-mate, a Mr Cedric Coombes, and at first thinks little of his new friend’s eccentric behaviour. But he can’t shake the feeling that he knows him from somewhere else. As Coombes displays his magnificent deductive prowess, and becomes embroiled in the police investigation of the apparent murder of a man in bathtub, Wilson, or should we say Watson, begins to wonder just who this Coombes really is . . ."--Inside jacket.

The Language of Bees: a Mary Russell novel by Laurie R. King - "For Mary Russell and her husband, Sherlock Holmes, returning to the Sussex coast after seven months abroad was especially sweet. There was even a mystery to solve—the unexplained disappearance of an entire colony of bees from one of Holmes’s beloved hives. But the anticipated sweetness of their homecoming is quickly tempered by a galling memory from the past. Mary had met Damian Adler only once before, when the surrealist painter had been charged with—and exonerated from—murder. Now the troubled young man is enlisting the Holmeses’ help again, this time in a desperate search for his missing wife and child." - publisher

Eye of the Crow by Shane Peacock - "Sherlock Holmes, just thirteen, is a misfit. His highborn mother is the daughter of an aristocratic family, his father a poor Jew. Their marriage flouts tradition and makes them social pariahs in the London of the 1860s; and their son, Sherlock, bears the burden of their rebellion. Friendless, bullied at school, he belongs nowhere and has only his wits to help him make his way. But what wits they are! His keen powers of observation are already apparent, though he is still a boy. He loves to amuse himself by constructing histories from the smallest detail for everyone he meets. Partly for fun, he focuses his attention on a sensational murder to see if he can solve it. But his game turns deadly serious when he finds himself the accused — and in London, they hang boys of thirteen." - publisher

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