The Case of the Missing Marquess by Nancy Springer is a fun, somewhat Sherlockian story featuring a feisty female protagonist.
hasn't escaped the notice of Enola Holmes that her first name spelled
backwards is "Alone." As the much younger daughter of the great Sherlock
Holmes, Enola has grown up on the run-down family estate in the care of
her eccentric mother, left often to her own devices. When her mother
disappears, Enola sends for Sherlock and Mycroft, hoping that they will
be able to solve the mystery of their mother's disappearance. Sherlock
soon returns to London, promising to work on locating their mother, but
not giving Enola much hope. Mycroft, bemoaning the condition of the
estate and Enola's breeding and education (or lack thereof), determines
to send Enola off to boarding school -- whereupon Enola runs away and
sets out on her own to solve the mystery of her mother's disappearance.
On the way to London, Enola stumbles upon another mysterious
disappearance, and she just can't help but get involved. Perhaps a
talent for detection runs in the family . . .
While I am not as much of a Sherlock Holmes aficionado as some I could mention,
I did think this book was fairly well done. I liked the way Enola chose
methods of escape and disguise that she felt Sherlock would not expect,
and used the trimmings and trappings of a "proper young lady" to her
advantage. The author obviously did her homework on the period, but she
incorporated period details into the story seamlessly, without
I listened to the audiobook, narrated by the
fabulous Katherine Kellgren. I first discovered her work by listening to
the Bloody Jack series, which I have mentioned before on this year's
threads. Kellgren does a great job of differentiating her characters,
and really has a feel for light historical fiction such as this. I'll
certainly be listening to more books in this series in the future.
(Reviewed from an audiobook borrowed through my library system.)