Sherlock Holmes is an unparalleled genius. Warlock Holmes is an idiot. A font of arcane power, certainly. But he’s brilliantly dim. Frankly, he couldn’t deduce his way out of a paper bag. The only thing he has really got going for him are the might of a thousand demons and his stalwart companion. Thankfully, Dr. Watson is always there to aid him through the treacherous shoals of Victorian propriety… and save him from a gruesome death every now and again.
Douglas Adams meets Arthur Conan Doyle in this delightfully absurd collection of six cases narrated by a Dr. Watson who's teamed with a very unusual partner: Warlock Holmes, a consulting magician. As in the original stories, the good doctor has returned from the Afghan War down on his luck, only to stumble into an opportunity to share quarters with an eccentric sleuth. Almost totally destitute, Watson leaps at the chance, despite Warlock's warning of his unusual tendencies and the detective's requirement that the doctor enter their Baker Street rooms by stepping over their threshold backward. Their first case together is a hilarious parody of A Study in Scarlet, wherein a "baked goods wrapper," inserted in the mouth of a murder victim, proves a vital clue. Watson also gets to meet this universe's versions of Inspectors Lestrade and Gregson, who are a vampire and an ogre, respectively. Sherlockians will be reminded of Robert L. Fish's brilliant Schlock Holmes stories.
So much fun!
My biggest disappointment with this book probably couldn't be helped. Simply: it ended.
The more I read, the more I hoped the book would get magically bigger. In the last chapter I took breaks at every scene change just hoping to make it last.
Holmes is a bit of a goof really while Watson seems more likely than even in Doyle's stories because, as a medical man one would expect him to be clever. And he is! But Holmes is not a fool, his knowledge is just focused on stranger things.
I found myself laughing out loud and by the second chapter had developed the wherewithal to highlight those laugh out loud moments (e-readers are so convenient). I'm not a fast reader but I couldn't put this book down. I was overjoyed as I turned the last page to see I'll get more Warlock Holmes in May. I hope it is as good as the first one!