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The Case of the Missing Marquess (Enola Holmes Series #1)

Average Rating 4.5
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

Great Characters and Plot

This is a great book! It combines the Victorian England world of Sherlock Holmes with a spunky determined heroine who wants to live her own life and shun conventions. Enola's wits enable her to solve mysteries and outwit her brothers Sherlock and Mycroft. Her heart p...
This is a great book! It combines the Victorian England world of Sherlock Holmes with a spunky determined heroine who wants to live her own life and shun conventions. Enola's wits enable her to solve mysteries and outwit her brothers Sherlock and Mycroft. Her heart pulls her to keep searching for her mother, who also appears to be unconventional for Victorian times. Enola's character will appeal to many of today's girls.

posted by Anonymous on January 13, 2008

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Most Helpful Critical Review

3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

Enola Holmes

Springer, N. (2006). An Enola Holmes Mystery: The Case of the Missing Marquess.
New York: Puffin Books.

9780142409336

After her mother has gone missing, Enola Holmes must call for her two older brothers, one of whom is the famous detective Sherlock Holmes. Threat...
Springer, N. (2006). An Enola Holmes Mystery: The Case of the Missing Marquess.
New York: Puffin Books.

9780142409336

After her mother has gone missing, Enola Holmes must call for her two older brothers, one of whom is the famous detective Sherlock Holmes. Threatened with boarding school, Enola instead decides to escape to search for her mother. She happens upon another mystery of a ten-year-old Marquess who is missing from his home. Enola's search for both the Marquess and her mother will take her to London where she encounters a number of different characters and dangers.

Enola's voice feels authentic to the time period. This is both a strength and weakness of the novel. While giving it an authentic feel, it may make it harder for some readers to engage with. The text is well-researched and gives a lot of sensory details to try to bring the reader in.

The experience of British women in the late nineteenth century is central to this novel. It shows the expectations upon women and the feminist experience and search for freedom within a restrictive society. And it serves as a strong start to the series of books showing Enola's mysterious cases that have followed it.

I am nerdy enough to have grown up, believing the character of Sherlock Holmes to be downright sexy. Springer, at least for a large portion of the novel, manages to challenge this perception by having Holmes wander around encouraging pity for his young sister due to her small "cranial capacity." His perception of women, while authentic and humorous, angered my feminist sensibilities. Which, you know, is the point.


Activities to do with the book:

There are many lessons that this book could be incorporated into, especially those involving the history of Great Britain, the women's movement, Western thought and philosophy, the meaning and significance of flowers or exploration of Sherlock Holmes as a character.

Students could create illustrations to accompany the story. This could take the form of portraits of the characters or even studies of flowers.


Favorite Quotes:

"I would very much like to know why my mother named me "Enola," which, backwards, spells alone. Mum was, or perhaps still is, fond of ciphers, and she must have had something in mind, whether foreboding or a sort of left-handed blessing or, already, plans, even though my father had not yet passed away" (p. 5).

"I remembered Dr. Watson's listing of my brother's accomplishments: scholar, chemist, superb violinist, expert marksman, swordsman, singlestick fighter, pugilist, and brilliant deductive thinker.
Then I formed a mental list of my own accomplishments: able to read, write and do sums; find birds' nests; dig worms and catch fish; and, oh yes, ride a bicycle" (pp. 29-30).

"What on earth was he saying? That Mum had abandoned me? I sat with my mouth ajar.
"Pity the girl's cranial capacity, Mycroft," Sherlock murmured to his brother" (p. 49).

For more of my children's literature reviews, visit sjkessel.blogspot.com.

posted by SJKessel on March 8, 2009

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  • Posted March 8, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Enola Holmes

    Springer, N. (2006). An Enola Holmes Mystery: The Case of the Missing Marquess.
    New York: Puffin Books.

    9780142409336

    After her mother has gone missing, Enola Holmes must call for her two older brothers, one of whom is the famous detective Sherlock Holmes. Threatened with boarding school, Enola instead decides to escape to search for her mother. She happens upon another mystery of a ten-year-old Marquess who is missing from his home. Enola's search for both the Marquess and her mother will take her to London where she encounters a number of different characters and dangers.

    Enola's voice feels authentic to the time period. This is both a strength and weakness of the novel. While giving it an authentic feel, it may make it harder for some readers to engage with. The text is well-researched and gives a lot of sensory details to try to bring the reader in.

    The experience of British women in the late nineteenth century is central to this novel. It shows the expectations upon women and the feminist experience and search for freedom within a restrictive society. And it serves as a strong start to the series of books showing Enola's mysterious cases that have followed it.

    I am nerdy enough to have grown up, believing the character of Sherlock Holmes to be downright sexy. Springer, at least for a large portion of the novel, manages to challenge this perception by having Holmes wander around encouraging pity for his young sister due to her small "cranial capacity." His perception of women, while authentic and humorous, angered my feminist sensibilities. Which, you know, is the point.


    Activities to do with the book:

    There are many lessons that this book could be incorporated into, especially those involving the history of Great Britain, the women's movement, Western thought and philosophy, the meaning and significance of flowers or exploration of Sherlock Holmes as a character.

    Students could create illustrations to accompany the story. This could take the form of portraits of the characters or even studies of flowers.


    Favorite Quotes:

    "I would very much like to know why my mother named me "Enola," which, backwards, spells alone. Mum was, or perhaps still is, fond of ciphers, and she must have had something in mind, whether foreboding or a sort of left-handed blessing or, already, plans, even though my father had not yet passed away" (p. 5).

    "I remembered Dr. Watson's listing of my brother's accomplishments: scholar, chemist, superb violinist, expert marksman, swordsman, singlestick fighter, pugilist, and brilliant deductive thinker.
    Then I formed a mental list of my own accomplishments: able to read, write and do sums; find birds' nests; dig worms and catch fish; and, oh yes, ride a bicycle" (pp. 29-30).

    "What on earth was he saying? That Mum had abandoned me? I sat with my mouth ajar.
    "Pity the girl's cranial capacity, Mycroft," Sherlock murmured to his brother" (p. 49).

    For more of my children's literature reviews, visit sjkessel.blogspot.com.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted December 28, 2011

    Fun mystery novel

    It was an interesting and easy read. I think it took too long to introduce the actual story, but I understand the need to set up Enola's character and storyline--plus the mystery with her mother. I enjoyed the take off from Sherlock Holmes. It was a fun way to breathe life into an old mystery series. Plus, using a girl is perfect and a great way to appeal to young female teens in a typically male-dominated genre. This book is great for the late elementary and junior high set. I even enjoyed it as an adult. The next two books in the series are already on their way--I bought them as soon as I finished reading this one!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 6, 2007

    this is a boring book

    i really don't like this book. it is boring

    0 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 15, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted November 29, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

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