This is Horowitz’s first dive into the world of Sherlock Holmes. It was also the first Holmes book sanctioned by the Conan Doyle estate.
As this was my first time delving in to the world of Sherlock Holmes on paper I couldn’t think of a better way to be introduced. The book opens in 1915, Holmes is long dead, and Watson recounts the story of Holmes’ most shocking case that couldn’t be revealed until now ‘The Case Of The Flat Cap’. Hired by a gent named Carstairs after the murder of one of his clients and the destruction of paintings at his gallery by Irish thugs
Holmes uses his gang of ‘irregulars’ to track down the gang to a hotel where one of the irregulars (Ross) is brutally murdered. The detectives then follow the breadcrumbs until they come across the mysterious House Of Silk. During the story Watson spends time with a mysterious stranger who expertly manipulates Holmes throughout the book. The stranger’s motives are unclear except he need Holmes to rid the world of ‘The House Of Silk’.
The story is well crafted and is a true mystery but most of all there is a sense of fun between the two main characters. I also loved one of the ‘BIG’ revelations later in the book. Horowitz’s take on the characters of Holmes and Watson felt authentic and certainly follows what we know of these literary legends. Personally I couldn’t find a fault with the book.
I know other reviewers have taken issue with timing’s and some character traits not consistent with the Conan Doyle version. But I think we must forgive these transgressions. After all the book has been sanctioned by the estate. It will also introduce new readers (like me) into the world of Holmes and Watson and that can only be a good thing.
I am already a HUGE fan of Horowitz’s so I was somewhat surprised to find he had written not one but two Holmes books. He is more well known for his Alex Rider series and as the creator of Foyles War. He has also written two James Bond books sanctioned by the Broccoli estate.
In short If you are already a fan or if you have been wanting to delve into the world of Sherlock Holmes you couldn’t ask for a better introduction.