Sunday, February 27, 2011

Browsing Area Book of the Week, February 28, 2011.

The God of the Hive by Laurie R. King.
Library Call Number: PS3561.I4813 G64 2010

     There are a great many people who have used Sherlock Holmes as the protagonist of their novels in the past 25 years, with various levels of success. King’s tenth book in a series succeeds for two reasons: Mary Russell, the wife of Sherlock Holmes, has the prominent role here, and the author is more interested in suspense than in trying to match the deductive plots of Arthur Conan Doyle.
     The story of international intrigue in post-World War I England pits a religious fanatic and his followers, who believe they can unleash psychic powers by human sacrifice, against Holmes and Russell. The heroes are on the run, Russell with a granddaughter and Holmes with his wounded son. Their only dependable ally, Sherlock’s brother Mycroft, has disappeared, and the odds seemed stacked against them. Though this is a sequel to The Language of Bees, it’s not necessary to read them in order; the plot is well-explained and previous events come out when they need to be explained, making this a page-turner by a proficient author, with an understanding of and empathy for her characters.

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