It is December 1888. The body of Queen Victoria’s physician is discovered in a railway carriage on Paddington Station. Sherlock summons his brother Mycroft to the scene. Sherlock is convinced the crime bears no resemblance to the Ripper murders but when a letter arrives at Scotland Yard, ostensibly from the Ripper, claiming he is the author of the crime, Lestrade doubts Sherlock’s wisdom. When the body of Sir James Fawcett, a leading expert on tropical diseases, is found at his home in Chelsea the day after, Sherlock realises that a challenging criminal mind is at work. This Sherlock Holmes novel, which follows the author’s own chronology of the cases of Holmes, introduces readers to a number of real life Victorian celebrities, including Oscar Wilde. By the author of ‘Sherlock Holmes, Consulting Detective.’

REVIEW plagues-of-londoncoverBy Ye Olde Ed on 26 Feb. 2016
Format: Paperback

This is the first Holmes novel by a distinguished Holmesian scholar, and it’s decidedly idiosyncratic. Like Dracula and The Moonstone, it consists of letters, diary entries and so on, by different characters. In December 1888, Queen Victoria’s physician is found murdered. The next day the body of another leading medical man is discovered. The police think the crimes may be the work of Jack the Ripper, but Holmes has other ideas. Besides Lestrade and Mycroft, characters include Charles Augustus Howell, Walter Sickert, and Arthur Conan Doyle. The author’s deep knowledge of the time, the place and the criminal history is evident throughout. It’s a gripping read — but be warned: descriptions of mutilation and murder are much more explicit than anything in Conan Doyle