It’s 1893. King Kamehameha III of Hawaii declares Sovereignty Restoration Day … Tension grows between China and Japan over Korea … The Bengal Famine worsens … A brilliant scientist in Calcutta challenges the system … The senior priest at Kyoto’s Kinkaku-ji temple is found dead in mysterious circumstances. Dr John H. Watson receives a strange letter from Yokohama. Then the quiet, distinguished Mr. Hashimoto is murdered inside a closed room on a voyage from Liverpool to Bombay. In the opium dens of Shanghai and in the back alleys of Tokyo, sinister men hatch evil plots. Professor Moriarty stalks the world, drawing up a map for worldwide dominion. Only one man can outwit the diabolical Professor Moriarty. Only one man can save the world. Has Sherlock Holmes survived the Reichenbach Falls? In a seriocomic novel that radically ups the ante, Sherlock Holmes and Watson find their match in more than one man (or indeed, woman) as a clock inexorably ticks. History, mystery, romance, conspiracies, knife-edge tension; a train in Russia, roadside crime in Alexandria, an upset stomach in Bombay, careening through Cambodia, nasty people in China, monks in Japan–here’s a thrilling global chase that will leave you breathless (occasionally with laughter) as the Sherlock Holmes: The Missing Years series begins.
Sherlock Holmes – The Missing Years in Japan is a fan fiction and Vasudev Murthy is a great fan and it is pretty evident when you read this book. This is my first experience with fan fiction and I read this book out of sheer curiosity. I wanted to see how someone can develop a character which is loved by so many people around the world. I should say that the experience was quite pleasant.
This book is all about how Sherlock and Watson manages to travel from London to Japan in the midst of very dangerous situations. Professor Moriarty who is responsible for Sherlock’s alleged death in the Reichenbach falls have become quite powerful and will do anything to see that Sherlock and Watson does not reach their destinations.
I think writing fan fiction is tough because the author has a tough job to keep up with the original writing style, characters etc.Vasudev Murthy has done a good job in imitating the style by Arthur Conan Doyle, but the lack of any particular mystery robs the reader to see the problem solving and analytical skill of Sherlock that is usually exhibited in the original works. I found this to be a negative point because I got bit bored reading about the long and dangerous journey they made. Too many characters and that too with Japanese names made my reading difficult. It was quite tough to remember and recollect who each character was.
Overall this was a pleasant read, but I will recommend this to you only if you are a die-hard Sherlock Holmes fan and likes fan fiction. Otherwise you should just go back and read the original. Nothing can beat them!
What do you think of fan fiction?
Source: eARC from Netgallety
Publisher: Poisoned Pen Press
Release: Mar 10 2015
Note: I received a digital copy of this book for review consideration.