The Baker Street Peculiars

Roger Langridge, illus. by Andy Hirsch. KaBoom, $14.99 trade paper (112p) ISBN 978-1-60886-928-2
The game is afoot—as are several living statues—in this exuberant supernatural riff on Sherlock Holmes, starring a trio of young sleuths. Brought together by a rampaging lion statue, street-smart Rajani Malakar, adventurous Molly Rosenberg, and uptight Humphrey Fforbes-Davenport may not always get along, but their complementary skills make them the perfect assistants to the aged and reclusive Sherlock Holmes. It’s 1933 London, and a living golem, Chippy Kipper, is assembling a stone army to take over the city. Amid all the fun, Langridge gives his story added depth and complexity as he explores race, gender, and class through the young heroes’ respective backgrounds: Rajani is a Bengali orphan turned street thief, Molly a working-class Jewish daughter whose father insists she always be thinking about marriage, and Humphrey, a white, prim, upper-class boy. Langridge (Abigail and the Snowman) and Hirsch (Varmints) deliver a boisterous adventure that juggles excitement, laughs, and mystery, all of which is recounted in energetic action sequences, a torrent of British slang, and a cartooning style that evokes vintage Archie and Richie Rich comics. Ages 8–11. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 02/13/2017
Release date: 01/01/2017
Genre: Children's
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