Friday, March 18, 2011

Death Cloud

Death CloudDeath Cloud by Andrew Lane

I love sharing the title of this book: Death Cloud. What a great mystery with two words. I ignored the cover of Bieber-fever hair and went straight to the description on the back: "It is the summer of 1868, and Sherlock Holmes is fourteen." No need to read the rest of the description! It's Sherlock Holmes in his teen years. What events in this novel shape the future Holmes we know and love?

Sherlock begins his adventure with summer vacation at an elderly relative's house. Right away, two men die from a mysterious disease. Could it be the return of the plague? Holmes decides to investigate with his new friend, Matty. Along the way, his American-born tutor joins the adventure. This is only the first in the many planned adventures of Young Sherlock Holmes.

This opening novel is full of death, fights and villainy. I enjoyed the mystery and found myself laughing out loud at it's oddities, too. Holmes outstanding logic and perception stand out abruptly while he seems to be learning all the fascinating knowledge he displays later in life. His education is full of Latin and traditional boys' subjects of the 1800's. The American tutor enters the picture with knowledge about the natural world, tracking individuals, noticing details, etc. I never envisioned Holmes learning his tricks of the trade from an American, so that was quite a shock. All in all, there will be more Young Sherlock Holmes adventures that will be entertaining to follow. If you enjoy historical mysteries, I would highly recommend following this series with The Agency series by Y. S. Lee.

Narrator Dan Weyman is very enjoyable - beautiful English accent with gentle transitions from character to character. His American accent brings to mind a mixture of Mark Twain and Bill Clinton.

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Audio Book Details...
Death Cloud by Andrew Lane
Series: Book 1, Young Sherlock Holmes
Read by Dan Weyman
Produced by Macmillan Young Listeners
Number of Discs: 6
Total Time: 7 hours

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