The Barnes & Noble Review
"The great marvel of King's series is that she's managed to preserve the integrity of Holmes's character and yet somehow conjure up a woman astute, edgy, and compelling enough to be the partner of his mind as well as his heart." The Washington Post
Die-hard Sherlock Holmes fans don't take tampering with their beloved sleuth lightly, which makes Laurie King's Mary Russell series all the more extraordinary, as it has been embraced and praised by fans and critics alike. In re-creating Sherlock Holmes in previous books as an adjunct to her chief protagonist, Mary Russell, King has set the couple's adventures in a milieu consistent with her own creation and, although true to the place and period, independent of Conan Doyle's work. Now, delightfully, she revives faint echoes of Doyle in bringing the Holmeses back to Dartmoor and the scene of one of the Great Detective's classic cases, which involved "the footsteps of a giant hound."
Holmes has been invited by his old friend the Reverend Baring-Gould to look into not only an unexplained death but also, more important in the ancient cleric's mind, sightings of a phantom coach on the moor possibly inhabited by a phantom noblewoman and accompanied by some phantom dogs. Holmes, in turn, pulls Mary from her studies at Oxford, enlists her in the quest, and finds himself taking a second seat to her endeavors. True to their expectations of the forbidding and difficult moor, the eerie rumors have a real-world explanation, but it is one that combines more wild emotion, surprise, and frighteningsuspensethan any ghost story could.
With wit and imagination, national bestseller Laurie R. King continues to remold and reinvent a crime-fiction legend and establish Mary Russell Holmes as a legend in her own time.
Sherlockians have their choice of being amused or affronted by these artful embellishments on the Holmes canon, and few will appreciate the curiously wan characterization of the great detective. But there's no resisting the appeal of King's thrillingly moody scenes of Dartmoor and her lovely evocation of its legends.
-- New York Times Book Review
Years ago the footprints of a gigantic hound lured Sherlock Holmes to Dartmoor. Now a ghostly presence haunts the moors once again. This time it is not the Baskerville hound that roams the night, but rather the spectral carriage of Lady Howard accompanied by her phantom black dog. When a local tin seeker, feverishly muttering about his ride in Lady Howard's coach, dies under suspicious circumstances, the Reverend Sabine Baring-Gould asks his old friend Sherlock Holmes to investigate. Holmes arrives in Dartmoor, followed by his wife and partner in detection, Mary Russell. Together they set out in a search across the moors looking for the person behind these terrifying events. The fourth title in a series featuring Holmes and Mary Russell, The Moor is a beautifully-written book. The author skillfully evokes Conan Doyle's classic Holmes, while still putting her own unique spin on things. Mary herself is a rare treat; an intelligent, independent woman who is a perfect match for Holmes. Readers familiar with The Hound of the Baskervilles will enjoy the references to that case that occasionally glimmer forth in this story. Fascinating tidbits of information about Dartmoor are expertly woven into the plot and the author has a flair for bringing the bleak, harsh beauty of the moors to life. This is a perfect choice for teens who enjoy historical fiction, historical mysteries, or are fans of Sherlock Holmes. VOYA Codes: 5Q 3P S (Hard to imagine it being better written, Will appeal with pushing, Senior High-defined as grades 10 to 12).
Young Mary Russell (A Monstrous Regiment of Women, St. Martin's, 1995) drops everything to join husband Sherlock Holmes in Devonshire, where the pair investigate an ancient family curse near the scene of The Hound of the Baskervilles published some 20 years earlier. The forbidding moor nearby provides them both danger and inspiration.
The Hound of the Baskervilles is back or is it? Certainly Sherlock Holmes thought he had sorted the whole matter out some 30 years earlier, but now his lifelong friend, the curmudge only Rev. Sabine Baring-Gould, calls Holmes to Dartmoor to sort out new sightings and solve an eerie murder. The detective in turn calls for his new wife, who arrives promptly at Baring-Gould's quasi-Elizabethan house, situated on the edge of the oppressive moor. As in the previous books, King chronicles the adventures of a strong young woman who is a wonderful match and foil for a very Conan Doyle-like Sherlock and creates a wonderful sense of time and place. In this case, it is Dartmoor in 1924. The moor becomes a looming presence and as much of a character as Baring-Gould, the local farmers and peasantry, and the new owners of Baskerville Hall. Familiarity with the original tale is not necessary, but those unacquainted with it before reading this book will surely want to go back to it. King has again successfully brought the famous sleuth into the 20th century and provided him with an assistant much more his match than poor Dr. Watson. The plot is thought-provoking, the solution satisfyingly Holmesian, and the whole adventure gratifying. This is definitely a worthy continuation of a hopefully longer series. It's not only an excellent mystery, but also a fine introduction to Holmes and a more-than-adequate survey of the time.
-- Susan H. Woodcock, Kings Park Library, Burke, VA
"Erudite, fascinating . . . the most successful re-creation of the famous inhabitant of 221B Baker Street ever attempted."The Houston Chronicle
"There's no resisting the appeal of Laurie R. King's thrillingly moody scenes of Dartmoor and her lovely evocations of its legends."The New York Times Book Review
"Dazzling may be the word to describe King's latest Mary Russell-Sherlock Holmes adventure. . . . Add King's devilishly clever plot and eccentric characters, her ability to achieve a perfect balance between serious mystery and lighthearted humor, and the charm with which she develops the captivating relationship between Holmes and Russell, and the result is a superbly rich read that would please Doyle himself."Booklist
"King has the tone, mood, and voice precisely right. . . . Very good."The Boston Globe
"Mary's description of how she thinks through all the elements of a mysteryso deep in thought as if she were in a trance-is excellent."Salon.com