Monday, August 29, 2011

Book Review: Death Cloud (Sherlock Holmes: The Legend Begins) by Andrew Lane

Title: Death Cloud

Author: Andrew Lane

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Publication Date: February 2011

Genre: Young Adult Historical Mystery Fiction

Series or Stand Alone: Series, Book One
Synopsis can be found here.

Review: There may be more stories written by other authors about Sherlock Holmes than by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle himself.  That says a lot right there. Holmes is clouded in his own mystery- a solitary figure, master in the art of deduction, a bit eccentric and very little is known about his past.

This is what makes Andrew Lane’s Holmes so enjoyable. Whether you are familiar with the original Holmes stories or not, he is so engrained in western culture with his signature deerstalker style hat, its hard to not recognize the popular literary figure.

Lane’s Holmes is young, curious and adventurous. While we see the slowly layered foundation of the man he is to become, this Holmes is fun to read. Along with his tutor Crowe and friend Matty, Sherlock starts his first adventure. He is only just a boy, but the potential is there and fueled by Crowe’s own skill and wisdom, it’s easy to see how young Sherlock develops into the man he is famous for.

Matty is true and loyal supporting character. Young, alone and rough around the edges, he makes the perfect friend for privileged Holmes.

Lane does a good job of prolonging the mystery, even if I had guessed it chapters earlier. There is a good deal of action and a couple of very threatening characters, so I think young boys might really enjoy this early Holmes adventure.  It’s light on the girl, and yes, of course there’s a girl, and heavy on the danger, which makes it perfect for boys maybe around 13 yrs old.

A quick read and a good debut to a promising series.

Review 6 Good but wouldn't own a copy


  1. I own this one, haha! I have the sequel too... gotta bump it up the TBR!

  2. i think you'd enjoy it! let me know how the sequel is!

  3. thank you for the very informative book review. and since 'imitation is the highest form of flattery' i think its safe to say that sir arthur conan doyle would be quite flattered that this character he created is still so popular! i read several of doyle's sherlock holmes stories. so the title of your review caught my eye!
    i am a new follower and a newbie blogger. i would like to invite you to come check out my blog at when you have the time.
    thanks for the giveaway!

  4. Great review! This looks like an interesting book. Thanks for sharing!

    Also, I’m a new follower—wonderful blog! Stop by my blog and follow me too? :)