Wednesday, July 8, 2015
Sherlock Holmes: The Missing Years: Japan by Vasudev Murthy
Millions of people all around the world can testify to the enduring fascination of Arthur Conan Doyle's consulting detective. I've been a fan since my mother bought me a complete collection of the Sherlock Holmes canon when I was just a kid. I still have the book, carefully held together with tape and rubber bands. And I enjoy reading all the variations on Holmes continuing adventures written by other besotted admirers.
Vasudev Murthy has now added his take on Holmes and Watson, and the "missing years" between Holmes' presumed death at the Reichenbach Falls and his startling reappearance in London (The Adventure of the Empty House), with a story of international intrigue and adventure set in Japan. The criminal mastermind, Professor Moriarty, unconvinced of Holmes' demise, sets his minions on the elusive detective's globe-spanning trail. Meanwhile, Holmes has been recruited by the Meiji Emperor of Japan, to prevent the Japanese Yakuza and the Chinese Triads from joining forces with Moriarty in an ambitious plan to destabilize Europe by flooding it with cheap opium.
It takes a little time for Murthy to hit his stride --- the first chapters are mostly expository and sometimes ponderous, but once Holmes reveals himself the pace quickens and the adventures begin.
The book is the first in a new series. True Sherlockians will enjoy this; other will give it a pass.
Click HERE for a review from Blog Critics.
Click HERE for a review from Kirkus.