Happy Saturday Everyone!
As you may have guessed from a few of my Saturday Selections, I’m slightly addicted to anything Sherlock. After having gobbled my way through all the Conan Doyle stories last year I’m now on the lookout for any books with a Sherlockian angle, even if it’s simply got hints of Sherlock influence such as Charles Finch’s Lenox series. So when I came across Lyndsay Faye’s Dust and Shadow, I let out a little squeal of delight and dove right in to the tale.
About Dust and Shadow
Take London’s most famous (even if fictional) detective and London’s most infamous serial killer, and you’ve got the makings of a great tale. In Dust and Shadow, Faye throws Sherlock Holmes into the path of Jack the Ripper. The result is excellent!
With every one of the Whitechapel murders, Holmes analyzes the clues (rendered with well-researched historical accuracy) as he tries to figure out who is killing the unfortunates (aka “hookers”) of London’s East End. As he gets closer to finding the killer, Holmes finds his reputation and his life on the line, but that doesn’t stop his pursuit. But even if Holmes can identify the killer, will Scotland Yard allow the great detective to nab The Ripper?
How Was It?
Why has no one written this book before!? Well, actually, I’m glad no one else has because Faye has done a marvelous job with this story. As with the classic Sherlock stories, Dust and Shadow is reported by Watson. Faye’s writing style so perfectly matches Conan Doyle’s that you could almost believe this is a lost manuscript of his.
But a spot on writing style will only get you so far. The story is truly compelling and, even though we are getting the info second hand through Watson, you can feel Holmes’s frustration with his inability to solve the case and his irritation at being accused of being the Ripper himself.
Sure, some things seem a bit convenient and the relationships with the secondary characters seem a bit forced, but not enough so to detract from the overall curiosity of whether or not Holmes is good enough to crack – or even survive – this case.
Hey Sherlock fans, do you have any recommendations for terrific Holmes’s novels that are out there? I’d love to get my hands on your suggestions, so share them in a comment below.
About Saturday Selections
Saturday Selections is a weekly (-ish) post about something that has put a smile on my face over the past week. It may be a book, a movie, or tasty food item. So, if you want to keep up to date on some of the great stuff in the world (or at least my world), be sure to follow this blog.