What is this about?: Eve Allerthorpe is about to inherit a lot of money from her aunt, but as she currently believes she’s being haunted by the Black Thurrick, which you guessed it, is a Christmas Demon that haunts the Yorkshire countryside. She turns to Sherlock and Watson for help to prove she isn’t going crazy and isn’t about to lose her inheritance.
What else is this about?: That’s it above, and well, you’ll see below when you read my review.
The new Sherlock Holmes novel from the New York Times bestselling author of The Age of Odin and Firefly – Big Damn Hero.
It is 1890, and in the days before Christmas Sherlock Holmes and Dr John Watson are visited at Baker Street by a new client. Eve Allerthorpe – eldest daughter of a grand but somewhat eccentric Yorkshire-based dynasty – is greatly distressed, as she believes she is being haunted by a demonic Christmas spirit.
Her late mother told her terrifying tales of the sinister Black Thurrick, and Eve is sure that she has seen the creature from her bedroom window. What is more, she has begun to receive mysterious parcels of birch twigs, the Black Thurrick’s calling card…
Eve stands to inherit a fortune if she is sound in mind, but it seems that something – or someone – is threatening her sanity. Holmes and Watson travel to the Allerthorpe family seat at Fellscar Keep to investigate, but soon discover that there is more to the case than at first appeared. There is another spirit haunting the family, and when a member of the household is found dead, the companions realise that no one is beyond suspicion.
I wasn’t sure what to expect when I opened up Sherlock Holmes and The Christmas Demon.
I didn’t expect the strong beat of nostalgia with which I began the book because one of James Lovegrove’s talents seems to be creating the atmosphere of Holmes from Doyle’s writing — which d’uh, I know, it’s probably why his name is on the book.
But here’s the thing, for me at least, it’s been some time since I’ve been back to Holmes and Watson’s world. The last book I read like that would have been by Doyle himself, but this one, made me feel like I was back there a chapter in.
Back with Holmes and Watson’s camaraderie, with the beat of their friendship that was oh so familiar and made me realise much like Kirk and Spock (Original series) I missed them so much. I missed the back and forth, and the banter and I missed how they worked together.
I missed them.
They worked together seamlessly as always, gaining Eve’s trust and bringing to the Allerthorpe household an outsider’s POV that highlighted their secrets and every damn issue they have hiding in plain sight — that one does not mention in polite society.
There are demons to be had in this, but they are, as you would expect of the human kind, highlighting exactly the people Even surrounds herself with.
I enjoyed the atmosphere Lovegrove created so much, the actual outcome of the case was incidental to everything Sherlockian that got me there.
I found myself willingly lost in a Sherlock adventure I didn’t think I’d enjoy so much.