Authors beginning with the letter C

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Adam Christopher

Elementary: The Ghost Line

Synopsis: Sherlock Holmes and Joan Watson, consulting detectives with the NYPD, pick up a case of a shooting victim in Hell’s Kitchen. The man who was shot, was inside a locked house, and had a good deal of money hidden in his bread bin, more than he should have had, seeing as he’s a subway driver.

It’s clear from the first few pages featuring Watson and Holmes that Christopher is a fan of the show. He has nailed the interaction between the two, and kept the way that the two characters are portrayed in the television show.

I liked the fact that we saw something of Bell’s inner monologue, his debate over whether he’s willing to give up his night off, going to a ball game with his friend, rather than trekking through the sewers with Holmes.

Joan’s strength, something that I really like about her character in the television show, is also referenced here. She has a gun pointed at her head, and later gets abducted but doesn’t allow it to shake her sense of control, focusing on what she needs to do to keep herself alive. Even after she has got out of the first situation, her only reaction is that she wants to have a bath.

There is comedy as well as the mystery, with two situations between Holmes and Watson in particular. Holmes steals Watson’s pillows in order to continue a experiment in silencing guns, involving a pig’s carcass, before the case really gets going. He also has filled the spice jars with soil, without telling Watson, leading her to use them in food.

It almost felt to me like the book could have been a novelisation of a particular episode of the show, Christopher’s grasp of the characterisation of the leads, was that strong. So if you are a fan of the show, or even if you just like crime books, I would recommend that you give this one a try.

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