I suppose it could be because I'm not a Dickens fan, but I found it kind of boring. Never really went into detail about character motivations, just ki...moreI suppose it could be because I'm not a Dickens fan, but I found it kind of boring. Never really went into detail about character motivations, just kind of a checklist of events.(less)
I'm enjoying this series a lot more than I thought I would. They're fun stories, with plenty of nods to Holmes's future characteristics, explaining ho...moreI'm enjoying this series a lot more than I thought I would. They're fun stories, with plenty of nods to Holmes's future characteristics, explaining how he may have become the person we all know from Conan Doyle.
Also, there's a lot of Mycroft. Always a plus in my book.(less)
OK, at first, I admit, I couldn't picture how "daughter of Sherlock Holmes" could be anything other than a bad OC fanfic. Never mind my personal pet p...moreOK, at first, I admit, I couldn't picture how "daughter of Sherlock Holmes" could be anything other than a bad OC fanfic. Never mind my personal pet peeve of Holmes as part of any romance, ever, even if it's just mentioned in passing. But this is her vision of Holmes, not mine, and I soon got past it enough to enjoy the story.
But I was very pleasantly surprised. I liked all the characters, especially Dora...I felt she was a believable YA heroine for the time, and there was enough mention of the customs holding women back at that time to give it a more realistic flavor.
Plus, it fit so well into the Holmes Canon; the main story was so much a copycat of The Adventure of Charles Augustus Milverton that it had to be a homage rather than anything else, plus it had a lot to do with Holmes's reputation during his own time, with enough references to people reading the stories and how the police/other detectives/the public might have viewed him to keep me happy. It's something that's always interested me.
In short, I actually am hoping there will be a sequel to this. The true test still remains...this took place during Holmes's great hiatus, but if it goes on long enough, he's bound to make an appearance, and if the author can truly write an accurate Holmes, then this will be a series to watch.(less)
Quite good, for a pastiche. Obviously nothing ever comes close to the Canon (and no, I don't think this is anything other than a pastiche, despite the...moreQuite good, for a pastiche. Obviously nothing ever comes close to the Canon (and no, I don't think this is anything other than a pastiche, despite the Conan Doyle estate "authorizing" it). Characterization was very well done. My one complaint is the shoehorning of every Canonical character. Some obviously made sense, some were just fun (Dr. Trevelyan...I had always wondered what happened to Holmes's clients after the cases, so that was a nod to this wish). SPOIILER WARNING: Moriarty had no place here. He just felt stuffed in there because every Holmes story HAS to include Moriarty for some reason. (Seriously, both of the current screen adaptations are so focused on Moriarty as the villain that I don't know how they can continue after he's supposed to be out of the picture).
I utterly loved this book. I've always been a Classics geek and the Iliad is my favorite Greek myth. Within the Iliad, Achilles and Patroclus are my f...moreI utterly loved this book. I've always been a Classics geek and the Iliad is my favorite Greek myth. Within the Iliad, Achilles and Patroclus are my favorite characters.
So basically this book gave me everything I ever wanted. A focus on Achilles and Patroclus' relationship, beautifully written and realistic. In depth characterization. You can tell that the author read the Iliad over and over and thought about what made these characters make the choices they did and become the people they were. A realistic Bronze Age Greek world, that shows how the Greek city-states functioned and eventually came together to fight, thus shaping the Greek Classical Age, and finally realistic deities that reflect the different cultures the Greek pantheon came from and how they evolved and were part of life.
Just read this book. It's the best Classical novel I've ever read.(less)
**spoiler alert** One of the things I love about Sherlock Holmes is how much freedom there is to do whatever you want with him, and the fact that some...more**spoiler alert** One of the things I love about Sherlock Holmes is how much freedom there is to do whatever you want with him, and the fact that someone does something with him you may not have done doesn't change anything. It doesn't change anything about Canonical Holmes, and it has no bearing on whatever your favorite adaptation happens to be (Benedict Cumberbatch FTW!), and it doesn't change "your" Holmes; the Holmes you create to answer those questions that pop up while reading ACD's Canon. Don't laugh, you know you do it too. How many wives did Watson have? What college did Holmes go to, and what was his childhood like?
So even though this book goes against plenty of my Holmes headcanon, it doesn't matter at all. It's an interesting glimpse at someone else's idea of what Holmes's life was like before Watson. I don't usually like Holmes as a romantic interest with anyone (my headcanon: he's aromantic asexual), but the romance here was...plausible, and it leads to him becoming the very mysoginistic, messed-up detective we all know and love. Besides, it's no less ridiculous than the once-widely held notion that Holmes met up with Irene Adler during the Great Hiatus and became the father of Nero Wolfe. Or that Moriarty was actually a woman that Holmes married during the Great Hiatus. That one goes against so much Sherlock Holmes canon that it makes my head hurt. This doesn't. This book tries and succeeds in fitting its theories into existing canon, which is something I like.
The other thing that goes against my headcanon is that Holmes had met Professor Moriarty in his youth (usually, as here, with the Professor as his tutor). I just think it's too coincidental, but I have to say I really like her Moriarty. He could truly become the Moriarty of canon. I was actually picturing Granada's Moriarty as I read, so that's a win.
The addition of Sherrinford is something I flip flop about. While I believe that there were only two Holmes brothers, I sometimes like to play with the idea of Sherrinford. And I can't deny that it makes sense for there to be an elder Holmes brother taking care of the family property while Mycroft is off being the British government and Sherlock is busy being the world's greatest detective. Plus, I really like her Sherrinford. It's an interesting idea to have him be the less intellectual of the three, which then adds a really great dimension to the relationship between Sherlock and Mycroft as well. In fact, that's one of my only complaints: more Mycroft please! And more Sherrinford. And more Holmes family story...I definitely found that to be my favorite part. (But really, especially more Mycroft because he was hardly even here, and I really like Mycroft).
Anyone remember when it used to be weird to find a book like this that referred to Holmes as Sherlock throughout? That's something that would have thrown me pre-BBC Sherlock (it did even in the ACD stories when Mycroft was around and Watson had to use first names to distinguish them), but doesn't anymore. It's a testament to her writing ability that I wasn't picturing Benedict Cumberbatch throughout...I was picturing a younger version of Canon Holmes. So again, another win.
It is fairly obvious that it's a self-published novel, but that doesn't take away from the story, and I'm looking forward to the sequel! (I won this off of http://wellreadsherlockian.com/)(less)