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REVIEW

"Solid homage to Doyle and Holmes"

In 1900 London the great Sherlock Holmes receives a message written in code that leads the detective to deduce that murdering mobster Abe Slaney survived his harrowing escape from prison rather than drowned as reported. Having barely stopped Abe before, Holmes knows the rematch will prove even more difficult and he also thinks someone else is playing him and his sidekick Watson like puppets on a strings.

Elsie Cubitt has vanished after withdrawing 5,000 pounds from her bank and Slaney is the most likely culprit. Holmes starts his quest by visiting a spiritualist, a confidant of Elsie. However, soon after Holmes leaves, the spiritualist vanishes too. The trail turns murky when a Holmes impersonator seems to be just in front of the London duo, leaving behind fallacious clues to throw Sherlock off and crime victims wanting retribution. The dynamic duo journeys to New York City where Holmes also vanishes, leaving Watson and bartender buddy Shadwell Rafferty in Chicago in search of the great sleuth and Elsie.

Though a solid homage to Doyle and Holmes, THE DISAPPEARANCE OF SHERLOCK HOLMES never quite grips the audience as one would expect with Holmes missing and apparently a prisoner of a devious enemy. Instead, the reader sees an insightful look at the late Victorian era on both sides of the Atlantic and the ho hum of another case as related by Watson. Though the candid insight by Elsie, Holmes, and others adds depth, this tribute is more for the Baker Street crowd revering along with Larry Millet one of the notables.

Harriet Klausner

Reviewed by PNR Group Member
Posted November 1, 2002

SUMMARY

Sherlock Holmes Disappears, Foul Play Suspected reads a New York headline. So begins the fifth mystery in Larry Millett's series, which takes Holmes on a chase across continents and on a labyrinthine journey into a dangerous and sinister mind. Only with the assistance of his large- hearted and amply proportioned old friend, Irish saloonkeeper Shadwell Rafferty, will the score be settled and justice delivered.

A letter, written in a secret cipher he recognizes all too well, tells the celebrated sleuth that Abe Slaney, the vicious murderer he once captured after a duel of wits, seems to have risen from the grave. And there is no time to waste. The beautiful woman for whom Slaney once killed is being held for ransom. But when it transpires that he-or someone-has presumed to impersonate Holmes himself, the great sleuth begins to glimpse a darker business than he expected. In desperate pursuit from London to New York to Chicago-from a foggy rendezvous in Lower Manhattan to a wild foray with Rafferty into the Windy City's underworld- Holmes soon has cause to wonder whether he will escape his captors or be framed for the crime himself.

 

The Disappearance Of Sherlock Holmes
by Larry Millet

Viking Press
November 21, 2002
ISBN #0670031402
352 pages
Hardcover
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