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Sons of Moriarty and More Stories of Sherlock Holmes
Edited by Laren D. Estleman
Review by Gayle Surrette
Tyrus Books Hardcover  ISBN/ITEM#: 9781440564833
Date: 18 November 2013 List Price $24.99 Amazon US / Amazon UK

Links: Editor's Website / Show Official Info /

An interesting mix of stories: a science fictional story set in a near future, a missing child in Wyoming, a missing general in England, an example of Holmes deducing from clues, a new story of murder using a method similar to one of Doyle's stories, and a brush with the Mafia. One of the stories is a short that was written by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, and another by a relative showing that the writing talent continues. All in all a nicely balanced anthology that is well worth reading and enjoying.

The Infernal Machine by John Lutz

Wilson Egewick's brother Landen has been accused of murder. Wilson seeks the help of Holmes to prove his innocence. The murder weapon is said to be the brother's Gatling gun. Wilson swears it was never used while the people who heard the sound say he's cleaned it and covered up the crime for the sake of his brother. Holmes is interested enough in the case to visit the village and the scene of the crime but will he find evidence to support Wilson or the villagers?
The Adventure of the Double-Bogey Man by Robert L. Fish.
This story features Schlock Holmes who lives at 221B Bagel Street with his friend Dr. Watney. Holmes has been asked to find General Kennebunk for the government. The general's aide is also missing and clues are few. The links in his chain of deduction are ones that Sherlock Holmes might make, but will the results lead to the general in time -- in this slightly skewed Holmes tale there's no sure answer because he's Schlock, not Sherlock.
The Case of the Bloodless Sock by Anne Perry
This story features Jane Watson and her friend Sherlock Holmes. Jane is visiting her uncle in Wyoming and, on her arrival, she learns that her young cousin is missing. This isn't the first time she may have wandered away but Jane is concerned and contacts Sherlock -- who she knows is at loose ends and needs occupation. Will Holmes be able to get to the bottom of Jenny's disappearances? I read this story a while back in another anthology and it was just as good on a second reading.
Sherlocks by Al Sarrantonio.
In the near future, detectives are more technicians, as they use a Sherlock to check the victim and the scene for clues, and then wait while it spits out the results. In this case, a retired police officer, who is now a detective, is asked to find a murderer -- preferably before the police and their instruments. This was an interesting twist with some serious considerations on how forensics are used, and occasionally abused, in solving cases.
The Field Bazaar by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.
Originally written for The Student, Doyle's undergraduate publication. It's a short piece where Holmes explains to Watson the chain of deduction that led him to know what Watson's letter was about, and who it was from. Not really a story, but entertaining.
The Depford Horror by Adrian Conan Doyle.
Holmes and Watson are asked to come calm down a hysterical young woman who is worried that she'll be the next victim claimed by the curse on her home. Her uncle believes that, since all the previous deaths have been the result of natural causes, someone of Holmes' standing reinforcing his message would help. Holmes visits the home and believes that things are not as simple as they seem. The twists and details were very absorbing, even though they echoed Arthur Conan Doyle's The Speckled Band.
Before the Adventures by Lenor Carroll.
This is a letter from an author to his editor, explaining how he came to write the Sherlock Holmes adventures. It's very biographical but I was never really sure who the author was -- Doyle or Watson. Nonetheless, it was a great read that touches on a lot of the speculation about Holmes and Watson.
Sons of Moriarty: A Sherlock Holmes Novella by Loren D. Estleman.
Holmes is asked by a young woman for help in getting her father's body exhumed so that she can take it back home to her country for re-burial. This simple request pulls in Holmes because he's a bit bored, but also because it seems that everywhere he turns he's running into the same blocks that the daughter found. Suspicious turns darker when Holmes finds himself being followed. The adventure seems to have connections to the Mafia. The twists of the plot require an intervention to assist the famous tenor, Caruso, and a trip to New York City. The ending will be a bit of a surprise, but the journey is well worth the time.

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