The Sherlockian Review
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For more than a century, readers have found themselves caught up in the romance and mystery of the adventures of Sherlock Holmes. But in author Graham Moore’s debut novel, The Sherlockian, it isn’t the legendary sleuth who hunts for clues; it’s one of his modern-day fans.

Henry White has always dreamed of being invited to join the Baker Street Irregulars—an elite group of devoted Sherlock Holmes enthusiasts. But he barely has time to enjoy the moment before he finds himself caught up in a Sherlockian mystery of his own.

Alex Cale, a leading Holmes scholar, has devoted his life to finding Arthur Conan Doyle’s missing diary, which covers the months of October through December of 1900. He claims that he’s finally found it—but, before he can reveal his findings to his fellow Sherlockians, he’s found dead in his hotel room. So Harold sets out to find the killer—and the missing diary.

But The Sherlockian is actually two mysteries for the price of one. The novel moves back and forth through time, in alternate chapters, from Harold’s 2010 investigation to one led by Conan Doyle and his close friend, Bram Stoker, during those lost months.

Though fans of Sherlock Holmes and his adventures will enjoy the chance to follow along with his creator, you don’t have to be a Sherlockian to enjoy The Sherlockian. Literary buffs will love spending some time with Arthur Conan Doyle and Bram Stoker (even if their adventures are mostly fictional). At the same time, history buffs will also enjoy the journey through Victorian England. And mystery buffs will simply love delving into two mysteries—in two different centuries, yet still connected—at the same time. Since I’m all three, I loved every captivating minute.

While Moore’s storytelling style—alternating between the two stories—does take some getting used to, it’s a clever technique. Each chapter ends with a new discovery—or a new danger—so you’ll soon find yourself racing through the chapters, caught up in the current mystery, yet eager to get back to the other one.

Moore also does an excellent job of making his characters come to life on the page. He’s clearly done his research—and the story comes together with a well-balanced mix of fact and fiction. He provides plenty of historical and literary tidbits to keep readers interested—but not so many that they bog down the story.

So whether you love Sherlock Holmes, history, or just a good mystery (or maybe even all three), the choice is elementary, my dear reader; you’re sure to enjoy this clever journey through literary history.

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