Sunday, March 23, 2014

Death Cloud by Andrew Lane

book cover
Death Cloud
by Andrew Lane

ISBN-13: 9781429929530
Hardback: 320 pages
Publisher: Macmillan
Released: Feb 1, 2011

Source: Borrowed from my local library.

Book Description from Back Cover:
It is the summer of 1868, and Sherlock Holmes is fourteen. On break from boarding school, he is staying with eccentric strangers—his uncle and aunt—in their vast house in Hampshire. When two local people die from symptoms that resemble the plague, Holmes begins to investigate what really killed them, helped by his new tutor, an American named Amyus Crowe. So begins Sherlock’s true education in detection, as he discovers the dastardly crimes of a brilliantly sinister villain of exquisitely malign intent.

My Review:
Death Cloud is a young adult historical suspense novel set in 1868 in England. The book started out with rich historical details woven into a story about Sherlock learning the skills that he uses as an adult. I found this very interesting and also enjoyed the characters. However, the story soon turned into an action-adventure movie...the type that has a lot of plot holes and unrealistic actions once you stop to think about it.

For example, Sherlock is being chased and wants to stay in a crowded area for safely so....instead of staying on the streets, he runs into a building he knows nothing about, descends into a crowded underground pedestrian tunnel, and mayhem ensues.

I didn't like that his actions throughout the book resulted in a lot of innocent people dying even if it was while trying to save his own life and "saving the day." I was also disappointed that the bad guys did everything the hard way, but sometimes that felt like the author hadn't done as much research on bees as he did the historical details. (If you know about bees, the whole plot is mildly amusing instead of suspenseful.) The author also appears to mistake knowledge with logic, but it's not the same thing. Basically, it wasn't what I'd expected from a book with Sherlock in it.

There was no sex or bad language. Overall, I'd recommend the book to teens.

If you've read this book, what do you think about it? I'd be honored if you wrote your own opinion of the book in the comments.

Excerpt: Read an excerpt using Google Preview.

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