A Study in Charlotte by Brittany Cavallaro
When Jamie Watson first meets Charlotte Holmes, he has just arrived at Sherringford, an exclusive east coast boarding school, on a rugby scholarship. She and her roommate Lena are cleaning up at Charlotte’s weekly poker night and all Jamie knows of her are his childhood fantasies of the pair of them solving crimes and capering on madcap adventures through the countryside. After all, their families have a lot of history together, even if the pair of them have never met.
What happens instead is he freaks out and flees the game.
When Jamie’s neanderthal of a rugby teammate Lee Dobson insults Charlotte very crassly and very graphically the next day, however, Jamie loses it and has to be dragged off Dobson, still swinging his fists. After which Charlotte coolly informs him she can take care of herself. But when Lee Dobson turns up dead in his dorm room, the victim of arsenic poisoning and evidence of snake bite a few days later and clutching a copy of The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, the game is afoot. Someone has recreated the murder scene from The Speckled Band – and very neatly framed Jamie and Charlotte for it.
If you’ve been missing Sherlock, or just can’t get enough of Holmes and Watson in any world, pick this one up this fall! Charlotte is just as brilliant, ruthless, and, frankly, more than a little terrifying, as her predecessor. Tutored in the arts of deduction, cat burglary, and possessing a frightening knowledge of poisons and deadly diseases, along with all the access her far-reaching family connections grants her, she still (reluctantly) takes on Watson as her assistant in solving Dobson’s murder, along with a series of other dastardly deeds along the way. You’ll also love to see how the Moriarty clan makes its insidious appearance – and it’s still up in the air as to how complicit they are in the crimes committed in this first book in a new series. Look for the second book of Jamie and Charlotte’s adventures, The Last of August, this coming February – where I’m pleased to see they’ll be solving crimes in their native England!
Looking for more Sherlock, but with a more historical flavor? Check out Jackaby and sequels by William Ritter, starring a detective just as clever, eccentric, and brilliant as any Holmes.