Sherlock Holmes is dead.
Days after Holmes and his arch-enemy Moriarty fall to their doom at the Reichenbach Falls, Pinkerton agent Frederick Chase arrives in Europe from New York. The death of Moriarty has created a poisonous vacuum which has been swiftly filled by a fiendish new criminal mastermind who has risen to take his place.
Ably assisted by Inspector Athelney Jones of Scotland Yard, a devoted student of Holmes' methods of investigation and deduction, Frederick Chase must forge a path through the darkest corners of the capital to shine light on this shadowy figure, a man much feared but seldom seen, a man determined to engulf London in a tide of murder and menace.
Author of the global best seller The House of Silk, Anthony Horowitz once more breathes life into the world created by Arthur Conan Doyle. With pitch-perfect characterisation and breath-taking pace, Horowitz weaves a relentlessly thrilling tale which teases and delights at every turn. The game is afoot....
Read by Julian Rhind-Tutt. This audio edition also includes The Three Monarchs, a short story narrated by Derek Jacobi.
©2014 Anthony Horowitz (P)2014 Orion Publishing Group
One of THE best endings I've ever read...
Listening to the audio version of this was the best decision, I believe, as it made the surprises so much more surprising! It started off okay, and because of certain inconsistencies, at first I was a bit overwhelmed. However, as you get through the book, sooo many things make sense. Honestly, it was worth the five stars just for that.
Just a cracker of a story
No more clues from me you will have to take the clue rice reviewers words as truth
Listen and enjoy
"Read/Listen with Caution!"
I enjoyed the first three quarters of this book - a rip roaring adventure through a late Victorian England brought to life by Horowitz 's writing. It was more violent than you would expect for a Holmes novel but the sensitivity of the two main characters, Jones and Chase helped to counterbalance this. In fact I thought our Holmes and Watson replacements - their friendship and the way they approached the murky underworld they found themselves in, were the best things about the book. Jones is like a Holmes with failings, a more human version of the real thing. He even has a wife and daughter. Chase is an interesting take on Watson, an American narrator. The adventure progresses at high pace, in fact it hardly pauses for breath. There are lots of enjoyable twists and turns and the reader is aware that all is not as it seems.
Then suddenly the ground shifts from under us by the greatest twist of all. Other reviewers have called it ingenious, audacious but I must say I agree with those who have said it is too clever for its own good. The result is to leave us feeling let down and frustrated. I wonder, does the author give the reader any credit for enjoying the rich world and characters created without the need to read the book for clues, like a mere crossword puzzle. I always used to enjoy all elements of Conan Doyle's stories - not just plot and denouement. I also always felt secure that although he might take us to some dark places, he would treat us gently and lead us to some sort of salvation. This is not the case is this book. I see the author smiling at his skill in manipulating the emotions of his reader. You are not in the hands of the master - read with caution!
I enjoyed the way Julian Rhind-Tutt injected excitement and emotion into the book. His American accents might have been dodgy, but I am English so that was no problem for me. I thought he carried the largely American narration very well, and it was a soft not grating accent which seemed to suit the character.
"Twist and Shout!"
Heavens! It takes a brave man to take up the pen and try to extend the Sherlock Holmes legend. However, Anthony Horrowitz is just such a man. He produces a fast-moving adventure with plenty of action and possibly slightly more gore than you'd expect, though never overly gratuitous in my view. The foundations of a Holmes novel are here of course with a mysterr to solve, dastardly villains the two leads in Detective Athelney Jones and Pinkerton agent Frederick Chase. They are obviously there to provide a similar chemistry to Holmes and Watson but they are treated not as mere imitations but as characters and back stories in their own right. The way that Athelney Jones a minor character from the original stories is worked into the plot is particularly well done.
All well and good but throughout the story there are continual hints that we are all missing something. I had all kinds of theories but the twist when it comes really does send a jolt through the senses and it's a genuine double take moment when it happens. I'll definitely say no more because to do so would be to risk ruining it. I'm sure it will divide opinion but there are some lengths taken to "reveal all" which helps.
The narration is very good and although not all accents were fully convincing to my ear the different characters were easy to distinguish and the drama maintained throughout.
In summary I felt this was a very fine effort and well worth a credit and the time spent. The big twist will most likely be the telling point for how most readers regard the book. I thought it was stunningly good and would highly recommend it!
"Completely taken in"
I love Horowitz! This is such fun and as good as any Sherlock Holmes. Completely unexpected twist...
Also my pedant's ear, always on the lookout, only spotted a couple of tiny anachronisms in the language, nothing that spoiled the narrative.
"Good, with a great ending"
Overall a superior story to the House of Silk; in part because focussing away from Holmes himself provided less constraints for Horowitz, as well as more fun for the reader. Having a different narrator to Dr Watson is refreshing too!
"Sherlock fan thinks this is brilliant!"
Yes, narrator was outstanding, story and plot were riveting with an unexpected twist!
When the lead character, Chase dropped the clanger
The whole book!
Gripped the whole way through
"An engaging story well narated."
Yes - Perhaps not as in depth and detailed as House of Silk, but nevertheless an enjoyable journey.
I must admit I sometimes find Holmes novels dry and hard work - to much meandering. This I found engaging but not taxing, a relaxing listen.
The story is in the first person (Frederick Chase), and he sounds real. You can imagine yourself in his shoes - no magical leaps of logic, just common sense, action and fear.
Excellent narration, easy on the ear, easy to understand and well read.
Gently engaging - not edge of the seat gripping but always pleasant and keen to hear more,
Oh my, this was good! The story, the characters, the narration, for me nothing could have been done better. And then, a total shock towards the end, one that I really didn't see coming at all... which made me smile about how I had been led by the nose!
A perfect 11 out of 10 - if you thought the House of Silk was good then you're in for a real treat with Moriarty.
"Not for the faint-hearted"
This book is a bit grim and bloody, some rather descriptive parts about graphic murders, which sensitive or younger listeners might not like. I had to turn it off while I had my lunch. The story is exceptionally well crafted, so I did not see the denouement coming (cleverer among you may have guessed), and was really shocked! I absolutely love Julian Rhind-Tutt's voice, but as he narrated a lot of this in an American accent, it was not quite as good as others I have heard. Please don't expect a happy ending.....
"Too blood thirsty for me"
Love Sherlock but this became way too violent- shame as the core story was good.
"How to kill a book with a bad ending"
Sadly no. I loved the book for the first 85%. Really, really enjoyed it. Loved where the story was going and was totally engaged by the characters. The ending wiped out all that good will completely. A clever twist was given priority over the story. I wasn't left impressed by how it had been achieved, I was left bitterly disappointed by what could have been.
No, and I would definitely read more by the author.
No. Due to the bad ending I felt my time was wasted.
Clearly a talented author, just a shame that one misstep derailed the whole thing for me.
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