cover image Sherlock Holmes and the Werewolves of Edinburgh

Sherlock Holmes and the Werewolves of Edinburgh

M.J. Downing. Burns & Lea, $10.99 trade paper (306p) ISBN 978-1-7339806-1-6

By Christmas 1888, Dr. Watson, an agent for Department Zed, has dealt “with London’s active zombies,” having dispatched numerous members of the undead, in Downing’s unconvincing second supernatural Sherlock Holmes novel (after 2019’s Sherlock Holmes and the Case of the Undead Client). Watson and Holmes, a secondary figure, now start investigating a series of murders and artifact thefts afflicting a clan of Travelers and involving werewolves. Oddly, Watson, given his battles with zombies, responds to reports of vampires with incredulity, “as any man would be to find out that the world of fantasy creatures was being spoken of with such seriousness.” Such inconsistency is matched by ponderous prose (“The energy of that ancient place, the telluric currents that culminated there, poured into me as though the old volcanic power had reached up and pulled down on my feeble energy”). That the story is almost entirely action is another minus. Others have been much better at genre-meshing. Agent: Victoria Lea, Aponte Literary. (Nov.)