Hemlock Jones & the Angel of Death (Hemlock Jones Chronicles) Paperback – 8 Apr 2016
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About the Author
Justin Carroll graduated with a degree in English Literature and Language from King’s College, London in 2004. In between writing and marketing, he fritters away his time doing all sorts of geeky things. Shortlisted for several international short story competitions, Justin was a finalist in the 2010 British Fantasy Awards. "Hemlock Jones & The Angel of Death" won a silver medal in the 2017 Wishing Shelf Awards.
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I loved the parody or, perhaps more accurately, the homage to Baker Street’s more famous detective and Victorian London as seen through the eyes of our precocious young heroine as she strides around London, in an often unorthodox and occasionally un-lady like manner and determination to solve her case.
Interestingly the twists of story’s structure, as unravelled by our young Demystifier and her assistant, slowly revealed the true genre of the work and framework of the world in which it all takes place. You start in one place but as the clues pile up and are pieced together you find that you are not entirely sure of the nature of the crime and the world that is being Demystified until some time later on.
My only minor criticism was with a little exposition déjà vu at the end but that was pretty much negated by my remembering the age group this is actually aimed at. So I look forward to the further adventures of Hemlock Jones as hinted at by Edward Whitlow, who looks like he will become not just the narrator and Nigel Bruce-esque sidekick but the long suffering sidekick.
I am sure that I won’t be the only person anticipating the further Adventures, Casebook, Papers or whatever of the intelligent and independent Hemlock Jones and recommend this as a fun read and not just for the target audience!
It's aimed at young persons aged around 10, which made it ideal for me [grin]. I liked the period detail, the quirky plot, the humour and the main characters. You'll probably like it best if you know a little about the unmentionable inhabitant of 221b Baker Street, but then again maybe not. Hemlock Jones is a delight - fearless yet feminine, sort of.
Can't wait for more.