Monday, October 18, 2010
Review: The Beekeeper's Apprentice by Laurie R. King
In The Beekeeper's Apprentice, Laurie R. King takes a literary icon and rejuvenates him in a way that is truly awe-inspiring. In the place of the cold and calculating Sherlock Holmes of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's creation stands a complex and captivating character who is just enough like the old Holmes to be recognizable. The relationship that develops between the detective and his protégé is captivating. Holmes is forced to recognize that he has finally met his equal, and the mixture of eagerness and incredulity is endearing. The banter and warmth between the unlikely pair paints a picture of the deep bond grounded in a meeting of minds that neither ever expected to find.
King judiciously mixes the old with the new. Though Holmes is a very different character, fans of the original will still appreciate her new perspective on the beloved detective. King's original creation, Mary, is spunky and smart and will instantly win over the most hard-hearted reader. Separately, they are interesting, but together they are irresistible. Their partnership is more balanced and engaging than Holmes and Watson's ever was -- though the old companion does make an appearance, and is charming in his own way. The story is less about the traditional mystery and deduction than about Holmes's and Mary's transformation: Holmes into a rounded and relateable human being, and Mary into the next generation of infallible supersleuth. However, the novel still keeps readers on their toes with the string of surprises and dangerous adventures that seem to stalk the great detective's every step.
Click here to order The Beekeeper's Apprentice by Laurie R. King