by Alexis Hall
Genres: Fantasy, Mystery
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In this charming, witty, and weird fantasy novel, Alexis Hall pays homage to Sherlock Holmes with a new twist on those renowned characters.
Upon returning to the city of Khelathra-Ven after five years fighting a war in another universe, Captain John Wyndham finds himself looking for somewhere to live, and expediency forces him to take lodgings at 221b Martyrs Walk. His new housemate is Ms. Shaharazad Haas, a consulting sorceress of mercurial temperament and dark reputation.
When Ms. Haas is enlisted to solve a case of blackmail against one of her former lovers, Miss Eirene Viola, Captain Wyndham finds himself drawn into a mystery that leads him from the salons of the literary set to the drowned back-alleys of Ven and even to a prison cell in lost Carcosa. Along the way he is beset by criminals, menaced by pirates, molested by vampires, almost devoured by mad gods, and called upon to punch a shark.
But the further the companions go in pursuit of the elusive blackmailer, the more impossible the case appears. Then again, in Khelathra-Ven reality is flexible, and the impossible is Ms. Haas' stock-in-trade.
The Affair of the Mysterious Letter by Alexis Hall set off planet, shares a mystery and adventure as relayed by Captain John Wyndham who finds himself housemates with the eccentric and brilliant sorcerer at 221b Martyrs Walk.
“I am the sorceress Shaharazad Haas. I never go wrong, I merely achieve things in a manner I had not intended.”
What a fun tale. This is a Sherlockian based tale set off planet and filled with magic, vampires, gods and limitless worlds. Come travel with John and Shaharzad Haas as they try to uncover a blackmailer.
Witches, underwater cities, shape-shifting, flying and more await you in this clever tale. I loved this female version of Sherlock. John Wyndham comes from a deeply religious planet and found after college he couldn’t quite move home. When he looks for housing on Khelathra-Ven, and answers an ad for a flatmate he finds himself at 221b Martyrs Walk.
The owner of the dwelling is a hoard of bees and lives in the attic. I will let you discover more, but as John will tell you, “Don’t drink the tea.” Shaharazad Haas is over the top. A female sorcerer who uses prohibited magic when it suits her, annoys everyone and yet it seems everyone owes her a favor. Why John agrees to live with her, you must discover for yourself.
John narrates the entire story as he recounts the first case he works with her. His explanations and direct conversations with us, the reader were delightful and more than once I laughed aloud. This is pure fantasy at its best.
Because John is speaking to us, the story had a nice flow with pauses, to share information about the planet, place or city we are visiting. I thought this was rather clever. John’s mannerisms and upbringing offered humor as he relayed the outlandish behavior of the brilliant, opinionated and troublesome Haas.
Fans of diversity and LGBT storylines will appreciate the refreshing acceptance and characters found within.
The Affair of the Mysterious Letter was a fun re-imagining of Sherlock Holmes and John Watson. Come, step off planet and enjoy!The Affair of the Mysterious Letter by Alexis Hall was a fun re-imagining of Sherlock Holmes and John Watson. #Mystery #Fantasy #LGBT Click To Tweet
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