Last week I created a mock-Booklist review for my collection development class. Different from my usual review writing style, this one focuses on the role of the book in trade. Let me know what you think of the new style!
Dust and Shadow: An Account of The Ripper Killings by Dr. John H. Watson
Faye, Lyndsay (author)
Dec. 2009. 325p.
Simon & Schuster, paperback, $15.00 (978-1416583318)
Dr. John H. Watson has kept silent about his role in the most notorious murder investigation of all time. Under the impression that the world would forget Jack the Ripper he opted to keep Sherlock Holmes’ name out of the papers, until now. As the murders in Whitechapel mount it becomes clear that there is more to the Ripper case than the papers ever reported. A whore-turned-detective, an accusation against Holmes and a rogue policeman come together to shed light on this mystery that history deemed unsolved. Set in London’s East End during the fall of 1888, Faye’s plot shows attention to historical detail. Victorian England comes to life under Faye’s thoughtful hand – with no detail from a woman’s dress to the smog filled air going unannounced. She adeptly narrates the case in the familiar voice of Dr. Watson, taking care to pick up realistic voices of East End peasants when necessary. The story swiftly careens from Polly Nichols to Mary Jane Kelly, with all of Holmes’ traditional snide wit intact. Readers of Caleb Carr and Matthew Pearl will love this fast-paced thriller. A fresh addition to the Sherlock Holmes’ canon, Dust and Shadow will please mystery readers and Ripper fans alike.