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Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Remembrance of Sherlock Holmes



By K. L. Bridgewater

During my last semester as an undergraduate at Indiana State University, one of my college professors had the class writing six different essays from six different literary theories. Feminist. New Criticism. Biographical. Historical. And a couple more I don’t remember. But the one thing I do remember is having to analyze The Great Gatsby six different ways. Boy, do I hate that book. Still today, I won’t watch the movie or glance at the book, sitting on my shelf next to To Kill a Mockingbird, which I absolutely adore.

To break the time from reading that horrible book written by F. Scott Fitzgerald, my professor mentioned she was currently reading The Complete Sherlock Holmes. Being someone who had never read any of the Sherlock Holmes’ stories, I always wanted to read them. So I went to the local library and borrowed them. I quickly devoured the tales by Arthur Conan Doyle written over a hundred years ago. Now, I watch anything to do with Sherlock Holmes, especially the latest BBC version. Soooo great.

Product DetailsAfter receiving a complimentary copy of Murder at the Mikado, I tore through the book in one evening. Enjoying the first two books, Rules of Murder and Death by the Book, I was really excited when Bethany House offered a free copy of me to review and talk about.

If you are a fan of Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes, then I suggest you pick up this book. It is a good mystery with believable characters. Even though Drew Farthering has money, he helps a little boy whose mother has been fingered as the suspect. The story features Drew, a young sleuth, with his two side-kicks, Madeline Parker, his fiancĂ©e, and Nick, his boyhood friend. Madeline and Drew’s wedding is in three weeks and in walks Fleur Landis, Drew’s old flame, asking him for help to free her.

To make matters worse, Drew believes Fleur and Mr. Landis’s son, Peter, does not look like Mr. Landis, but the man, Mr. Ravenswood, who was supposedly murdered by Fleur.

The story uses old clever knowledge and examination of the crime scenes to hunt for evidence. Drew and Madeline question the members of the theater troupe to discover the inter-tangle of relationships, causing in jealousy and revenge exploding all over the backstage at the Tivoli Theater. 

The plot even features an actual police officer, Chief Inspector Birdsong, who reminds me a lot of Inspector Lestrade, Cunning, yet totally dependent on Drew Farthering to notice the overlook clues by the local police.

Not going to spoil the plot and tell the ending. You have to read the book for yourself to find out who killed Mr. Ravenswood. But it’s good.

Murder at the Mikado features a heart racing mystery with a hint of romance populated with real life characters all playing a part in Julianna Deering’s mind. The story gave me the great sense of accomplishment I received after finishing Arthur Conan Doyle’s masterpieces. I just hope readers still enjoy Julianna Deering’s creations a hundred years from now. I know I sure did.

If you’ve read the book, did it remind you of Sherlock Holmes? If you never drew the connection before, what did I mention that made you think of that?  Feel free to leave a comment below, stating your feeling of the book or of my analysis. 

I received a complimentary copy of Murder at Mikado from Bethany House in exchange for my honest opinion. All the statements above are mine. 

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