The Baker Street Letters (Baker Street Letters Series #1)

( 40 )

Overview

"In Los Angeles, a geological surveyor maps out a proposed subway route and then goes missing. His eight-year-old daughter, in her desperation, turns to the one person she thinks might help - she writes a letter to Sherlock Holmes." "That letter creates an uproar at 221b Baker Street, which now houses the law offices of attorney and man about town Reggie Heath and his hapless brother, Nigel. Instead of filing the letter as he's supposed to, Nigel decides to investigate. Soon he's flying off to Los Angeles, inconsiderately leaving a very dead body ...

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The Baker Street Letters (Baker Street Letters Series #1)

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Overview

"In Los Angeles, a geological surveyor maps out a proposed subway route and then goes missing. His eight-year-old daughter, in her desperation, turns to the one person she thinks might help - she writes a letter to Sherlock Holmes." "That letter creates an uproar at 221b Baker Street, which now houses the law offices of attorney and man about town Reggie Heath and his hapless brother, Nigel. Instead of filing the letter as he's supposed to, Nigel decides to investigate. Soon he's flying off to Los Angeles, inconsiderately leaving a very dead body on the floor in his office. Big brother Reggie follows Nigel to California, as does Reggie's sometime lover, Laura - quick-witted stage actress who's captured the hearts of both brothers." When Nigel is arrested, Reggie must use aII his wits to solve a case that Sherlock Holmes would have savored and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle fans will adore.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

Robertson's engaging debut, the first in a projected series, offers one of the more original premises involving the Sherlock Holmes character. London solicitor Reggie Heath, who's just leased office space on Baker Street, finds his obligations include making sure letters addressed to Sherlock Holmes at 221B are answered, if with formulaic replies. After a senior clerk is bludgeoned to death and Heath's younger ne'er-do-well brother disappears, the lawyer suspects both events are connected to a letter an eight-year-old girl, Mara Ramirez, sent nearly 20 years earlier asking the great detective to locate her missing father. Heath follows the trail to Los Angeles, where he succeeds in tracking down Mara and learns current crimes may be connected with her father's disappearance. Readers will want to spend more time with the appealing Heath and company, but the conceit of having future mysteries to solve based on letters to Baker Street may be hard to sustain. (June)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Library Journal

When attorney Reggie Heath rents new offices on Baker Street, his lease requires that he answer arriving letters addressed to Sherlock Holmes. He assigns this task to younger brother Nigel. Soon the siblings are in Los Angeles, out of their depth, looking for the woman who once asked the most famous detective of all time for help finding her father. Great characters, a complex plot, and the wonderful feeling that people still believe in Sherlock Holmes round out this debut treat. [Television rights sold to Warner Brothers; library marketing campaign; Minotaur First Edition Selection.]


—Jo Ann Vicarel
Kirkus Reviews
A transatlantic mystery draws two brothers into a web of murder. When attorney Reggie Heath rents office space on Baker Street in 1997, he begins receiving letters from various places addressed to Sherlock Holmes and appealing, naturally, for his detective help. Reggie considers the letters an amusing nuisance. But his mentally fragile younger brother Nigel, who's working as a clerk for his brother after being suspended from the practice of law for misconduct, becomes obsessed with the continuing correspondence of a young Californian searching for her missing mother. Reggie's often distracted from his needy brother's clashes with abrasive senior clerk Robert Ocher by his vigorous affair with American actress Laura Rankin. On the night that Laura is to return stateside for a major engagement, Reggie finds Ocher's bludgeoned body in Nigel's office. There's no trace of Nigel, so Reggie covers for him. When he finds evidence that Nigel's flown to Los Angeles, he follows, hoping to learn that his brother is innocent of murder or, failing that, is simply alive and well. Reggie's retracing of Nigel's footsteps takes him to a seedy hotel, another dead body and an encounter with the LAPD, who take him in on suspicion of murder. It's cold comfort to Reggie that witnesses mistake him for his brother. Upon his release, Reggie begins sleuthing in earnest. His investigation leads to a welcome reunion with Nigel and a rockier one with his ladylove Laura. Robertson's sure-footed debut is lively and inventive. TV rights to Warner Bros. Agent: Rebecca Oliver/Endeavor
From the Publisher
“A very entertaining novel. Mystery fans, whether they’re Sherlock Holmes addicts or not, will thoroughly enjoy it. [This] should be a popular series indeed.”

- Booklist

"An intriguing and original plot, a likeable detective and a page turning read."

- M. C. Beaton

“A transatlantic mystery draws two brothers into a web of murder when attorney Reggie Heath rents office space on Baker Street. He begins receiving letters from various places addressed to Sherlock Holmes, and considers the letters an amusing nuisance. But his mentally fragile younger brother Nigel, who’s working as a clerk for his brother, becomes obsessed with the continuing correspondence of a young Californian searching for her missing mother. Sure-footed, Robertson’s debut is lively and inventive.”

- Kirkus Reviews

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781433257360
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.
  • Publication date: 6/23/2009
  • Series: Baker Street Letters Series , #1
  • Format: MP3 on CD
  • Edition description: Unabridged, 1 MP3, 10 hours
  • Pages: 1
  • Product dimensions: 5.30 (w) x 7.40 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Michael Robertson works for a large company with branches in the United States and England. The Baker Street Letters is his first novel and has been optioned by Warner Bros. for television. He lives in Southern California.

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Read an Excerpt

“Nigel, Laura is waiting. Will you tell me what is wrong?”

Nigel separated the letters and displayed them on the desk in front of Reggie.

“Part of my job is to reply to correspondence that should have been

delivered elsewhere—or rather, not at all.”

“What’s the problem? If it’s misdelivered, send it back.”

“I can’t. It’s in the lease.”

“What is?”

“That the tenant receive these letters, and not complain to the postmaster to get them stopped, but instead respond to them—with these bloody forms I have around here someplace.”

“I still don’t know what you’re talking about.”

“The in-basket is full of them. Just take one off the top.”

Reggie did so. He began to read one letter—and then he abruptly stopped.  He stared at the name of the addressee for a moment, and he gave his brother an incredulous look.

“Nigel, is this a joke?”

“It’s not a joke.”

Reggie read aloud the address on the envelope: “Mr. Sherlock Holmes, 221b Baker Street, London.”

He tossed the letter dismissively back onto the desk in front of Nigel.

Nigel was unfazed. “Look at the others,” he said.

Reggie picked up another letter and read the address: “Sherlock Holmes, Consulting Detective, 221b Baker Street.”

And another: “Mr. Sherlock Holmes, Bee Keeper, c/o 221b Baker Street.”

Nigel nodded and folded his arms as though he’d made his point.

“Are you telling me everything in this basket is addressed to him?” demanded Reggie.

“Yes—they’re pretty much all like that, although most aren’t so much interested in the beekeeping aspect.”

Reggie stared at the letters in his hand and then back at Nigel again.

“You mean simply because our address is—”

“Yes,” said Nigel. “Simply because you’ve located your chambers in a building that takes up the entire Two Hundred block of Baker Street.”

“But surely no one could actually believe—”

“Apparently some would do.”

Reggie looked again at the letters that had piled up in the basket. There were dozens of them, in all kinds of formats—scrawled in longhand and typed on ancient Remingtons; laser-printed and hand-lettered on lined yellow pads.

In fact, the letters to Sherlock Holmes outnumbered all the legitimate correspondence. This was annoying.

“Doesn’t it occur to these people that if he were real, that he’d be long dead and rotten?”

Nigel shrugged. “What can I tell you? Dorset House has been getting and responding to the letters for years. The Baker Street Tourist Board loves them for it.”

“Then let them handle the responses.  Why should we worry about—”

“Because the letters have always been delivered to this floor of this building—and now you’ve taken a leasehold on it. And as you know, the lease specifically says that the occupant of these premises takes responsibility for the letters.”

Reggie said nothing for a moment, and now it was Nigel’s turn to give the older brother an incredulous stare.

“You did know this, of course,” said Nigel. “I mean, you did read the full lease agreement before signing?”

“Of course,” said Reggie.

“Article 3d, paragraph 2a, of addendum G?”

 Reggie was silent. He knew what had happened, though he was loathe to admit it—especially to Nigel. The lease terms had been too favorable—and he had been too eager.

 

Excerpted from The Baker Street Letters by Michael Robertson.

Copyright © 2009 by Michael Robertson

Published by St. Martin’s Press.

All rights reserved. This work is protected under copyright laws and reproduction is strictly prohibited. Permission to reproduce the material in any manner or medium must be secured from the Publisher.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 40 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(8)

4 Star

(17)

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(12)

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(1)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 40 Customer Reviews
  • Posted July 12, 2011

    A Fun Romp and a Perplexing Mystery

    This first-in-series book combines a cast of interesting characters, a nifty concept, and two disparate settings. The result is a rollicking good mystery!

    It's important to me that all the pieces be in place for the detective (and me) to solve a mystery and that is the case with "The Baker Street Letters." I enjoyed the English characters--two brothers and a famous actress they have both dated--as well as the American characters. None were stock (another flaw I like to avoid in mysteries). It was also great to see a strong female lead in the story; as a detective and adventurer, she holds her own with the male leads.

    6 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted February 11, 2012

    Very Different

    I enjoyed this story. It is very different from the types of stories that I usually read.
    These two brothers drop everything at home and travel 5000 miles to help someone that they think is in trouble and get themselves in trouble with the law in LA.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 26, 2011

    Baker Street Brothers solve the case

    Interesting premise, if your office is at 221 Baker Street how do you answer the mail addressed to Sherlock Holmes? Reggie goes to LA to help his brother when Nigel takes it into his head to follow up on a 20 year old letter addressed to Mr. Holmes. Well developed characters and great plot, glad I have the sequel ready to start since it did end with open questions.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 17, 2009

    I Liked it.

    I enjoyed it because I like England and people from England and I like Los Angeles and I like people from Los Angeles. What's not to like in this first work. A decent story, with interesting characters from England and Los Angles. I just liked it.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 13, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    This is an enjoyable refreshing spin to the Holmes universe

    In 1997 Solicitor Reggie Heath signs a lease to rent office space on Baker Street. As part of the rental agreement, the attorney is responsible for responding to requests from people writing to Sherlock Holmes at 221B Baker Street. Reggie figures the letters are a humorous irritant so assigns the answers to his clerk, his younger brother Nigel suspended from legal practice due to misconduct.

    Nigel takes the pleas for help seriously and tries to respond with more than a platitude. He is especially fixated on a "pen pal" Mara Ramirez who sent a note to Mr. Holmes two decades ago when she was eight and her mom was missing. Nigel and senior clerk Robert Ocher often argue especially how to respond as the latter wants as little time spent on the Holmes correspondence as possible. Robert is soon killed by a knife in Nigel's office while Nigel has vanished. Reggie knows his sibling is missing some brain pixels, but believes he is not a killer yet still fears these two events are tied to Mara. He travels to Los Angeles not sure what to expect; what he did not was having LAPD arrest him on charges of homicide.

    This is an enjoyable refreshing spin to the Holmes universe though when it comes to sleuthing neither brother is on a par with Watson let alone the great literary detective as a distracted Nigel is always in trouble and Reggie is a somewhat bumbling amateur sleuth. The story line is fast-paced from the moment Nigel reads the first letter from Mara and never slows down until the final Los Angeles confrontation. Readers will enjoy this fine modern day spin to the Baker Street cosmos.

    Harriet Klausner

    3 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 7, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Two brothers move into 221b Baker Street, now law offices. Lette

    Two brothers move into 221b Baker Street, now law offices. Letters pleading for help from the famous previous resident of the address continue to come in. Nigel Heath, the meandering brother of Reggie Heath, wealthy barrister, is assigned to read and dispatch the letters. One comes across the desk and Nigel decides to investigate. In Los Angeles. And gets arrested. There's a dead body. Reggie follows. Investigation ensues.
    Such a superbly excellent book! This has the feel of a 'Chinatown' with Englishmen instead of JJ Gittes (Jack's character) investigating murder and shady development deals.
    I really cannot wait to read the next in the series, THE BROTHERS OF BAKER STREET.
    I highly recommend this one

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 25, 2014

    I Also Recommend:

    Good so far ...

    I bought several books at the same time I purchased this one, so I haven't read all of it. What I have read so far is good and I'm enjoying it. The characters I've met so far have truly "get your teeth into" personalities (no pun intended for you vampire lovers out there). Which, to me, is just as important as the story itself. If the characters can't carry a personality all their own, come across as "watery", then I lose interest. These characters deliver. I purchased this book based on the title eluding to Sherlock Holmes, and it touches in that "direction". So I'm happy the title wasn't misleading either - it's a mystery story. So, all in all, happy with the money I spent on this book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 31, 2014

    Clever new series

    Just when Sherlock Holmes is turning up all over television we get yet another angle on things mysterious with a Baker Street address. It isn't a complete surprise that Sherlock still gets requests for finding the lost and solving the unsolvable. Letters arrive occasionally at Baker Street and somebody has to answers hem since that clause is written in to the lease Reggie has just signed and his semi-disbarred brother gets the job. Of course it take two brothers working with and against each other to bring things to a satisfactory conclusion. It's a good story with characters who have promise of becoming increasingly interesting

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  • Posted January 31, 2014

    Not worth it.

    At first, the story seemed to be gaining momentum. Then, it just fell flat and continued to do so so I just quit reading it.

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  • Posted April 14, 2011

    ,

    .

    0 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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    Posted May 31, 2012

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    Posted January 14, 2012

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    Posted May 30, 2011

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    Posted March 25, 2014

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    Posted May 13, 2011

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    Posted August 7, 2011

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    Posted June 5, 2011

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    Posted April 27, 2011

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