The Baker Street Phantom Paperback
Part of the A Singleton & Trelawney Case series
In the spring of 1932, with Londoners terrorised by a series of brutal murders, the private detective agency of Messrs.
Singleton and Trelawney quietly opens its doors in Bloomsbury. The first person to call on their services is a worried Lady Arthur Conan Doyle.
She tells of mysterious events at 221 Baker Street - and a premonition that the London murders signal terrible danger for mankind. Their investigation will take our intrepid heroes into a world of seances and spirits.
Aided by the most famous detective of all time, they must draw on their knowledge of the imaginary to find the perpetrators of some very real and bloody crimes before they strike again -
- Format: Paperback
- Pages: 352 pages
- Publisher: Gallic Books
- Publication Date: 02/08/2010
- Category: Crime & mystery
- ISBN: 9781906040284
Showing 1 - 2 of 2 reviews.
Review by GeraniumCat
This is a great idea – a series which hinges on a literary mystery, and introduces a new pair of detectives, James Trelawney (who fancies himself as the new Sherlock Holmes) and his Canadian friend, Andrew Singleton, who’d rather be a writer. Finding Boston offers limited opportunities for any interesting detecting, the two young men take up residence in London in 1932, serendipitously choosing lodgings in the first street to house Sherlock Holmes, Montague Street “just round the corner from the British Museum”, as Holmes says.For readers seeking conventional cosy crime, though, a warning – Bourland is, he says, “reviving a subgenre of crime fiction that was very popular in the past, that of detectives of ‘the strange’ or ‘the occult’.” Despite initial scepticism on the part of Singleton, himself the son of a famous Canadian spiritualist, ghosts abound.Very much in the Holmes tradition the story begins with a visitor to the lodgings of the newly arrived detectives. It is Lady Conan Doyle, who tells them that she has a premonition that something dreadful is going to happen, and that she believes reports of hauntings at 221 Baker Street may be connected. Singleton and Trelawney, hoping to prove that the “hauntings” are staged by charlatans, decide to attend a séance, and before long find themselves plunged into the murkier parts of London, and working with some very strange characters.There are some quibbles – mainly the signs of rushed research, I think. Bourland has obviously gone into the Sherlock Homes part with enthusiasm, and goes well beyond my superficial knowledge of Conan Doyle’s writing, but he’s shaky in other places. He’s unfortunately muddled up his Montague Streets, so that he thinks that Regent’s Park is also just round the corner from the British Museum (it might at a pinch seem so to two healthy young men with long legs but I hope no elderly readers decide on a walking tour based on this book!) and I was disconcerted by the description of someone as an “East Indies” officer – East India, surely? I was even more disconcerted to read that Londoners had “long ceased heating their homes with coal” so that fog rarely descended on the city and the myth was only perpetuated by Hollywood directors. I must have been born in a different London, where smogs still happened and the Clean Air Act was only passed in 1956! I’m not entirely convinced by a handwritten telegram, too – but the telex machine was first used in Britain in 1932, so it’s a moot point. These are things that a good copyeditor ought to have picked up on before publication.I must admit that this feels like a first novel, and both writing and plotting are a little clunky in places, but writers have to start somewhere, and there’s enough here to make it certain that I’d pick up the second in the series. There are books where the author’s enthusiasm for his/her project shines through, and this is one of them.
Review by Elphaba71
This is the first book in what promises to be a great new Fantasy/Crime series with Detectives Singleton and Trelawney. Set in 1932 their first case takes them to Bakers Street and into the supernatural world................I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book, with its very likable two main characters, looking forward to the next installment.