London 1910. Not long after has Watson returned into Baker Street due to the loss of his wife Mary he and Sherlock Holmes are summoned to the final concert of Irene (Adler) Norton. Irene is still married to Godfrey Norton (from Scandal in Bohemia) and is the mother of a 20something daughter, Sophie, who is to marry a young James Doyle. Irene isn’t convinced of young James and feels Sophie should reconsider. Tension rise between mother and daughter but this will not delay the concert. As Irene Adler takes to the stage one final time she is suddenly stricken dead and Sherlock Holmes suspect murder, but by who and why?!
I found this story to be an enjoyable read. Writing a Sherlock Holmes story can be very hit and miss and I think Fiona-Jane Brown did a nice job. Canonically is fits in well with Doyle’s original stories with some twists. The setting and pacing of the story is not what you would find in a Canon Doyle story, but that is not a fault. The story has a unique tone and pace. Early on in the story we get a sense that everyone is a little older. The Victorian era is over and Sherlock Holmes and Doctor Watson are not the young men they once were. While old habits remain the same they have aged. Still there are plenty of deductions and bafflements, nods and easter eggs, and familiar faces.
Long time Holmes fans will find familiar territory being tread within the story as you dive into the Sherlock Holmes/Irene Adler mystery. There is always intrigue when it comes to the relationship between Holmes and Adler and what, if any, further encounters might have been after their original meeting. For anyone unfamiliar with Doyle’s original stories or the plethora of pastiches this story would be a nudge to venture in to those works.
Further Thoughts And Spoilers:
Professor Moriarty has survived the great fall from Reichenbach and as the fates twist his son, James, is preparing to wed young Sophie Norton. The story revolves around the return of Moriarty who wishes to kill Irene Norton’s daughter believing her to be the illegitimate daughter of Sherlock Holmes and Irene. Moriarty will not have his son marry the possible daughter of Sherlock Holmes; he fails in his attempt to kill Sophie and Irene takes the hit. I am ever on the fence about the return of Moriarty. I’ve seen it done many times and often I am not a fan, but that is simply down the the readers preference and in no way reflects the quality of the story. Personally I might not have chosen to bring Moriarty back. That said it does add to the many ways in which he returns bent on revenge against Sherlock Holmes and this is certainly one of the more interesting ways I have read. There are some hints that Sophie might be the daughter of Irene Adler and Sherlock Holmes, but this is neither confirmed nor denied. There is always speculation that this has happened and even the great Detective Nero Wolfe is sometimes said to be the child of these two. I enjoy ambiguity when it comes to Holmes and Irene and I am glad Fiona-Jane left it as such.
Further reading check out
Sherlock Holmes Studies in Legacy is available from all good book stores including in the USA Amazon, in the UK Amazon, Waterstones, and for everywhere else Book Depository who offer free worldwide delivery. In ebook format there is Kindle, iPad and Kobo.
Sherlock Holmes & The Horror of Frankenstein: A Graphic Novel is available from all good book stories including USA Amazon, in the UK Amazon, Waterstones, and for everywhere else Book Depository who offer free worldwide delivery. In ebook format there is kindle, iPad, and Kobo.
Sherlock Holmes & The Case of the Crystal Blue Bottle – A Graphic Novel. Available in paperback and ebook from all good book stores in US & UK, Amazon.com , Amazon.co.uk, iTunes & iTunes UK and The Book Depository ! Alternatively you can order straight from MX Publishing!