Larry Millett has managed to recapture the voice and style of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and bring Sherlock Holmes across the Pond to America. In this third adventure Holmes is hired by King Oskar II of Sweden to authenticate a mysterious stone dug up by a western Minnesota farmer. Trouble begins to mount, however, when the farmer is murdered and the stone disappears. Joining Holmes in the quest for the archaeological truth is Sherlock Holmes and the Ice Palace Murders alumnus Shadwell Rafferty. With Rafferty's talents for "discreet investigations" and Holmes's deductive genius, Sherlock Holmes and the Rune Stone Mystery is a rollicking and suspenseful incarnation of Doyle's classic sleuth.
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Larry Millett is a columnist for the St. Paul Pioneer Press.From Library Journal:
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's famous sleuthing pair continues to inspire other mystery writers, as witnessed by these three titles. In Millett's novel, Sherlock Holmes, languishing between cases in London, seizes the opportunity to authenticateAfor the Swedish kingAa rune stone found in Minnesota. He and Watson (the narrator, of course) encounter a wide variety of locals, from a wealthy empire builder and a lusty saloon-keeper to a beautiful ex-brothel owner. Before they can examine the stone, however, someone steals it and kills its owner. Secretive, surprising, inventive, and ill-acquainted with modesty, Sherlock and his latest American adventure (e.g., Sherlock Holmes and the Ice Palace Murders) merit wide readership. Mycroft Holmes (Sherlock's older brother) and confidential secretary Peter Guthrie take the place of Holmes and Watson in Fawcett's series (Against the Brotherhood) "authorized" by Dame Jean Conan Doyle. Oddly enough, this pair's mission also involves the Swedish king, whom they must smuggle out of the country aboard a fast train to Scotland. Assassination attempts, murder, conspiracy, and secrecy all lend to the intrigue and tension. Literate prose and an overabundance of detail may dry this out for some, but purchase for fans. More Holmes for the Holidays, a follow-up to the 1996 Holmes for the Holidays, features 11 new tributes to Conan Doyle. Authors include not only well-known mystery writers such as Anne Perry, Jon Breen, and Peter Lovesey but also "cross-over" Western and sf writers, such as Bill Crider, Loren Estleman, and Tanith Lee. In Perry's story, which leads off, Holmes and Watson determine how a priceless Stradivarius was stolen from a locked room during a ten-minute time frame. In Lee's story, the pair confront an apparent puzzle dealing with a beautiful woman and a family curse. All in all, a likely purchase for most short story collections.
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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