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Reviewed by Bil Howard for Readers' Favorite
Sherlock Holmes' Lost Adventure (The True Story of the Giant Rats of Sumatra) by Lauren Steinhauer is the story of two beautiful women, one missing and another rescued to become the personal secretary of Holmes and Watson. Seemingly unconnected, Holmes turns away cases involving a missing child and a couple of stolen typewriters in favor of a well-earned holiday, but the great detective can never wholly escape his calling. After meeting an Augustinian friar on the train to Prague, Holmes and Watson are treated to a tour of Brünn, but a theft of some of the father’s personal notes provides the fuel for another adventure. Suddenly, the game is afoot, involving Charles Darwin, an esoteric society known as the Nine Unknown Men, giant rats, the volcanic islands of Sumatra, and a new arch-nemesis. Holmes and Watson risk their lives to unravel the mystery and deliver the citizens of London from the infestation of giant rats.
Lauren Steinhauer has nailed it with a mystery thriller that is worthy of praise from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. The characters of Holmes and Watson are a believable match to the originals, each with his peculiar quirks. Also worthy of praise is how the tale is spun; the intricate cords of an impossibly tight knot are so perfectly wound that it seems beyond hope that even the great detective can untangle it. However, strand by strand the enigma is solved in the classical flair Sherlock Holmes readers have come to demand for decades. Deep, mystifying, stimulating, and well-crafted, you won’t stop turning pages until this thrilling mystery is solved.