Sherlock Holmes remains a popular literary character–and one who has made a place in the world of children’s literature as well. Not only retellings, but also spin-offs that appeal to a range of ages and readers. This last year has seen the publication of several books-in-a-series that create a world for tween and teen (and older!) Sherlock Holmes aficionados to enjoy. Here’s a sampling:
A Study in Charlotte by Brittany Cavalliaro
In this Sherlockian world, descendants of John Watson and Sherlock Holmes have kept up their relationship over decades. (There’s a hint that the Moriarty family is also involved. . .stay tuned.) The 21st century version depicts the boarding school world of teens Charlotte Holmes and John Watson who meet and become friends solving a murder mystery of a fellow student. Definitely a YA novel recommended for high school at least as this witty and sometimes dark retelling features a Charlotte Holmes with the same tendencies as her famous great-great-great-etc. Grandfather, including indulging in drugs (though they are shown to be dangerous and unhealthy). It’s a very clever mystery, well-written to show the depth of the characters and their deepening relationship. Be looking for the second in the series early in 2017!
The Great Shelby Holmes by Elizabeth Eulberg
Here is another version of the 21st century Holmes and Watson, and once again it is a female Sherlock character. Shelby Holmes is already known in the neighborhood as a master sleuth, though she is a small nine-year-old and her neighborhood is Harlem in New York City. When she meets John Watson, he has just arrived with his single Mom, and having a hard time adjusting to his parents’ recent divorce. He is soon drawn into Shelby’s sleuthing, though she is two years younger than he is, and a girl to boot. He and Shelby tackle a dog-knapping mystery with cleverness, determination, and quite a bit if courage. The story is well told and the characters are complex and engaging. I’m looking forward to this duo’s future adventures!
For all of us who love imagining how Sherlock Holmes might have evolved to become the sleuth extraordinaire of the literary world, the latest Young Sherlock is the perfect read. As you may recall from our earlier post, we highly recommend for YA readers The Young Sherlock Holmes series . In this important retelling, Sherlock’s mother has died, and even brother Mycroft is at a loss how to proceed. But when a man vanishes from the home that the brothers are visiting, they must solve the case–and this draws them into yet another mystery, one set in Egypt. Adventure and suspense abound. We continue to recommend this series!