Baker Street Irregulars: Thirteen Authors with New Takes on Sherlock Holmes

Edited by Michael A. Ventrella and Jonathan Maberry. Diversion, $16.99 trade paper (304p) ISBN 978-1-62681-840-8
When an author writes a story featuring Sherlock Holmes as a “bio-synthed, augmented, 7 percent human, upgraded, unmortal, consulting extrapoloid,” as David Gerrold does in “The Fabulous Marble,” he sets the bar pretty high. Unfortunately, Gerrold fails to clear that bar. But, then again, none of the 12 other contributors to this anthology do any better. As Ventrella says in the introduction, the editors “invited some great writers to give us their interpretations with the only limitation being that we needed a mystery solved by a personality that was clearly Sherlock’s.” Readers get Sherlock as the host of a reality show, as a transgender detective in Charleston, and as a parrot. The results only demonstrate that putting Sherlock’s personality in such unusual forms isn’t as easy as it sounds. Even one of the more clever conceits—Austin Farmer making the sleuth a violinist in Beethoven’s Vienna orchestra in “Beethoven’s Baton”—is undermined by anachronistic language and an over-the-top denouement. Holmes purists should look elsewhere. (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 01/02/2017
Release date: 03/01/2017
Genre: Fiction
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