Monday, September 24, 2012

Russell and Holmes are back in Garment of Shadows

Garment of Shadows ( A Russell and Holmes Novel #12)
Laurie R. King
Recorded Books
September 12, 2012

Garment of Shadows opens with Russell waking up in an unfamiliar room in Morocco with no memory of who she is. All she knows is that she has a blinding headache and that her hands are covered with blood. When she sees soldiers arriving she knows she must escape.

Thus begins the twelfth Mary Russell-Sherlock Holmes adventure and Laurie King returns to the territory that I so enjoy in the novels and make them "must buys". Garment of Shadows is an artful mixture of history, adventure and the sort of descriptions that are well written enough to make one feel the heat and smell the odors of the Moroccan bazaar. Mixed in are the return of Mahmoud and Ali Hazr, two of my favorite characters who appeared in earlier novels, O Jerusalem and Justice Hall.

The year is 1924 and Russell and Holmes become embroiled in international politics or "the Great Game" played by Great Britain. The Rif Rebellion by the Berber tribesman of the mountainous northern region of Morocco is ongoing and has nearly defeated the forces of the Spanish. The question is whether France will become involved and if so, will they back Spain or the tribesmen? As Holmes is the cousin of Hubert Lyautay, Resident General of the French Protectorate, he is in a position to influence the French decision. Many historical figures play a part in Garment of Shadows: Lyautey, Abd el-Krim of the Rif and Raisuli, "the last of the Barbary pirates". 

Those who have followed the adventures of Russell and Holmes will be glad to know that Holmes is very much present in Garment of Shadows. The oddly assorted pair of Holmes and his much younger wife are true equals in skill and intellect, making the partnership believeable. Along with the history and adventure there is nail-biting suspense as Russell and Holmes are endangered both together and separately.

The audio book is as always ably narrated by Jenny Sterlin. However, part of the book is narrated by Robert Ian MacKenzie. I generally don't care for dual voice audio books but MacKenzie's narration is also enjoyable. I highly recommend Garment of Shadows in either spoken word or print form.

Rating- 4.5 Stars