Another Review at MyShelf.Com

In The Dead of Winter
A Myrl Adler Norton Mystery - Book I

by Abbey Pen Baker


Myrl Adler Norton was the daughter of opera singer and femme fatale Irene Adler and Sherlock Holmes.  In this debut novel, she goes a-sleuthing with young narrator Faye Martin Tullis, a student at Smith College and keen suffragette.  The owner of the lodging house where Faye’s fellow student Rachel is staying, is found dead in bizarre circumstances, and the pair embark on their first investigation together.

This is one of those novels where the author discovers some old papers in the prologue and the long ago writer tells the rest of the tale.  Faye makes a young and suitable naïve Watson to the flamboyant Myrl’s Holmes, and having the main participant tell the story in her own words is a good idea.  What unravels gradually is a suitably bizarre tale, which shows that the author has got possibly the most important part of writing "Sherlockiana" in my opinion—Conan Doyle’s talent for the strange and weird.  I always think that this is probably the main thing that sets it apart from the bulk of detective fiction, and it is present here, which lifts the novel from the bulk of other similar fiction.  Having the protagonists as women takes it a step further away from anything that actually features Conan Doyle’s characters, and thus this first novel in a proposed series has another thing to recommend it.

The Book

Irregular Special Press
March 2010
1901091392 / 9781901091397
Historical Mystery / 1918 Vermont and environs
More at US || UK

The Reviewer

Rachel A Hyde
Reviewed 2010
© 2010