Goodreads Book Blurb: Long retired, Sherlock Holmes quietly pursues his study of honeybee behavior on the Sussex Downs. He never imagines he would encounter anyone whose intellect matched his own, much less an audacious teenage girl with a penchant for detection. Miss Mary Russell becomes Holmes’ pupil and quickly hones her talent for deduction, disguises and danger. But when an elusive villain enters the picture, their partnership is put to a real test.
My Opinion: I have never read any of the original Sherlock Holmes books. I think I should, though. I really enjoyed The Beekeeper’s Apprentice.
The prose and the tone are both delightfully English, as in the country… not the language. There is so much dry wit and humor to the exchanges that at times I found myself chuckling, if not outright laughing out loud.
I really found the relationship between Holmes and Russel to be very organic and natural. It was something that I really appreciated. There was no awkwardness and proclamations of love, just a really great teacher/student relationship. And Mary very much is a student. While she is smart and independent of her own accord, she also doesn’t know everything. She stumbles, and that is part of what makes her a believable character.
King has done a good job with worldbuilding, but one minor thing irks me. Either the level of mystery in The Beekeeper’s Apprentice went over my head, or the reader is meant to just be along for the ride. In other mystery books, you generally get a chance to at least try to figure it out before the end. There was no such chance here.
Bottom Line: A delightfully English book with great characters that unfortunately doesn’t include you in the mystery solving. Sherlock is a bit of a jerk that way, I guess.