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Locked Rooms | [Laurie R. King]

Locked Rooms

New York Times best-selling author Laurie R. King has won sweeping critical acclaim and an impressive collection of awards for her writing. Although other writers have tried, no one has matched King's ability to capture the allure of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's legendary sleuth, Sherlock Holmes.
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Publisher's Summary

New York Times best-selling author Laurie R. King has won sweeping critical acclaim and an impressive collection of awards for her writing. Although other writers have tried, no one has matched King's ability to capture the allure of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's legendary sleuth, Sherlock Holmes.

Haunted by her dreams, Mary Russell arrives in San Francisco in 1924 to settle her parents' estate. But she quickly encounters a few surprises and learns there may be a great deal more to her childhood in this city than she ever knew. As Mary tries to cobble the pieces of her shadowy past together, her husband Holmes wonders if she may be repressing vital memories. And one thing seems certain; someone wants Mary's remembrances to stay buried.

King is at the top of her game with Locked Rooms, a wonderfully intricate and marvelously evocative mystery rich with unexpected twists and turns.

©2005 Laurie R. King; (P)2005 Recorded Books, LLC

What the Critics Say

"A highlight in an altogether outstanding series." (Booklist)
"Richly imagined....The narrative has real momentum, the characters are engaging, and the prose, as always, is intelligent, evocative, and graceful." (Publishers Weekly)
"A humdinger of a plot that deepens with each retelling of the dreams, plus pulsating descriptions of San Francisco's tent cities, looters, and flattened Chinatown in the 1906 quake's aftermath." (Kirkus Reviews)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (721 )
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4.7 (348 )
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  •  
    Poets Logic Gainesville, Florida 09-16-05
    Poets Logic Gainesville, Florida 09-16-05 Listener Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A remarkable achievement..."

    Taking a page from her previous book, The Game, Laurie R. King delves into uncharted though welcome waters. The series has been a joy to read as it pits a very modern woman with the inimitable Sherlock Holmes, clearly equals in every sense of the word. I have enjoyed this series immensely and was eager to delve into this new book. However, I was not prepared for the psychological overtones this book handles so eloquently. It is deeply believable and frequently moving in scope.

    Furthermore, the descriptions of post earthquake/fire San Francisco are oddly reminiscent of post Katrina New Orleans. I always wondered why looters weren't shot on sight in these situations and Ms. King's description of overzealous police shooting the innocent along with the guilty gave me chills. King applies her prodigious intellect to such subjects as psychology, auto mechanics and feng shui, each with a deft style that is easy to read and totally engaging. Get this for that long trip when you can devote a number of hours to a deeply satisfying read.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    carina OREGON CITY, OR, United States 05-17-14
    carina OREGON CITY, OR, United States 05-17-14 Member Since 2010

    Retired teacher

    HELPFUL VOTES
    8
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    24
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    "A Favorite"
    If you could sum up Locked Rooms in three words, what would they be?

    Mary's Mystery Solved


    What did you like best about this story?

    It tells the background of Mary Russell's life. I always wondered about the full story of how she was orphaned. I liked how Mary becomes more "human" in this story, has the same wounds and lost memories as all of us would have from serious traumas.


    What does Jenny Sterlin bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    I love Jenny Sterlin's voices. She can even do a Chinese- American accent that is believable. Holm's and Mary's voices remain the same throughout the series. This is remarkable. If I had only read these books, I would miss HEARING these familiar voices. Thank you Jenny.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    San Francisco Earthquake Mystery 1906


    Any additional comments?

    This is one of my favorite Sherlock Holmes/Mary Russell stories focused on one of my favorite cities, San Francisco. I was fascinated to hear details of the 1906 Earthquake and fires, the chaos afterwards, and the strength of the survivors. A most interesting time period and a story I will listen to again.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Susan G. Wood Central, NY 04-10-14
    Susan G. Wood Central, NY 04-10-14 Member Since 2013

    Librarian, reader, commuter. I got tired of the radio and CDs and switched to audio books. Now I listen to books while I quilt, clean, etc

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Locked Rooms and Locked Memories"
    Any additional comments?

    Mary Russell and her husband, Sherlock Holmes are returning to England by ship by way of San Francisco, Mary's childhood home. The purpose is two-fold, to see old friends and to wind up her estate, sell the family house, and break her ties with the past. The last reason is not stated by Mary but suspected by her husband. As they approach the city, Mary begins to have nightmares, loss of appetite, and change in personality. Her intelligence, powers of observation and deductive acumen suffers. Rather than a simple, nostalgic trip to past haunts, the visit becomes haunting, haunted, threatening and puzzling. As things unfold in Holmes' and Russell's methodical questioning, deeply buried secrets emerge.The is a terrific series. This one is told from two perspectives, Mary's first person narrative and a third person Holmes perspective. It makes the story worldview more balanced between the couple and we do see how Mary is struggling when even she believes she is as strong and logical as ever. An excellent book.And as an audio book, this is enthralling.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    ctcoburn Lansing, MI, United States 03-30-14
    ctcoburn Lansing, MI, United States 03-30-14 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
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    "good as always"

    Good, but not the best in the series. There is not much to the mystery, but I listen to this series mostly because I like the characters.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Elizabeth Sacramento, CA, United States 01-16-14
    Elizabeth Sacramento, CA, United States 01-16-14 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Interesting book!"

    Enjoyed the book, story did not end until the last chapter. Liked the setting in San Francisco.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    M. Chesapeake, VA, United States 07-29-13
    M. Chesapeake, VA, United States 07-29-13 Member Since 2012

    mmc

    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
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    "entertaining"

    this was an entertaining listen!! well crafted, imaginative, enjoyable. Images conjured from a turn of the phrase, the in-depth detailed description lends itself to listening. excellent performance, well written, great imagination. I have several in the series and I will say this is one of the best, right up there with Justice Hall.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    M. Andreasen Utah United States 03-18-13
    M. Andreasen Utah United States 03-18-13 Member Since 2012

    behavior tamer

    ratings
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    17
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    "Love the series, love the writing"
    Would you listen to Locked Rooms again? Why?

    Definitely! It is one of those stories that, even though you already know the ending, getting there is part of the fun.


    What does Jenny Sterlin bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    The accent is extremely helpful in taking me to the time and place. She is an amazing storyteller.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yes but I broke it up in to pieces so I could savor it and not be in a hurry.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    R. Murphy Ithaca, NY 01-23-13
    R. Murphy Ithaca, NY 01-23-13 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great Mystery in California"
    What made the experience of listening to Locked Rooms the most enjoyable?

    Compelling story line; believable characters


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Locked Rooms?

    When Mary discovers the truth about the cause of her family's car crash.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    hard to pick just one


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    No, it's too long, but I was always eager to get back to it.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Eldon Snippet Las Vegas, NV, USA 11-15-12
    Eldon Snippet Las Vegas, NV, USA 11-15-12 Member Since 2007

    computer dude

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "The best of the Mary Russell books"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Locked Rooms to be better than the print version?

    While the audio version was absolutely excellent and was as good as the print version, the print version was excellent in its own right and could in no way be call inferior to the audio version.


    Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

    Mary Russell, wife of Sherlock Holmes, is having issues with her memory which is bringing problems to them both. With lives in jeopardy Sherlock Holmes enlists the help of Dashiell Hammett, the author of Sam Spade mysteries and much more.


    Any additional comments?

    Jenny Sterlin does her usual superb job of reading in this book. She is the best voice for the characters.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    10-29-12
    10-29-12 Listener Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
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    "Eighth book of the series"
    Where does Locked Rooms rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    I consider the Mary Russell / Sherlock Holmes books by Laurie King to be excellent and look forward to the next one as soon as the present book has been completed. Locked Rooms answered a lot of questions and was a very satisfying finish to the angst Mary suffered over the perceived guilt surrounding the death of her family. It was also written in a style somewhat different than the other books in the series of eight.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Mary is always my favourite character. She is improbably intelligent, outspoken and well travelled, married to a middle aged icon. Her many skills include the art of disguise as a detective in her own right, adept at self protection and attack, a degree in theology and chemistry from Oxford, master of many languages, an ardent feminist and the only other match to Holmes beyond Adler. Her stories are written over a span of almost 20 years, as memoirs, introduced by a series of writings delivered to a novelist with a request for any information on the writer, Mary Russell. Intriguing!
    She is her usual enigmatic and factual self, with a little vulnerability thrown in. Mary has suffered dreams and memories that tormented her over the death of her family in an auto accident that she considers her fault. The resolution of this restores her equilibrium and brings piece of mind.



    Which scene was your favorite?

    The best scene is the one that takes place in San Francisco's Chinatown where Holmes, Russell and a group of 'irregulars' end up on a chase of two suspects. The Chinese man with them, Long, was the son of her parents' good friends. He calls on the crowd to prevent them from getting away. Russell confronts the two before they are arrested, and is able to solve the last mystery — a memory she has of a man who tampered with her parents' car the day they died.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Oh yes. I was driving a long distance when I started it and sat in the driveway for a while after I stopped to hear more.


    Any additional comments?

    King often brings interesting characters into her novels. Mary has met met T. E. Lawrence, J. R. R. Tolkien and Edmund Allenby in addition to several characters in specific novels. In The Game, the spy is one whom Holmes knows from his travels in India long ago, under the name Sigurson - Kimball O'Hara, known to the world by the name Rudyard Kipling called him, Kim. In A Letter of Mary, a fictional Lord Peter Wimsey makes a brief cameo appearance. In God of the Hive, modern-day Robin Goodfellow is introduced to help Russell. She also meets Holmes' old acquaintance, Rev. Sabine Baring-Gould, the squire of Lew Trenchard, to help solve the mystery of the ghostly hound in The Moor. Locked Rooms is no exception where Holmes and Russell team up with a former Pinkerton agent Dashiell Hammett.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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