Review | The House of Silk (New Sherlock Holmes #1) by Anthony Horowitz

Almost as good as the original. 4/5 stars.

The House of Silk Sherlock Holmes 1 by Anthony Horowitz book cover

The blurb: In freezing London, November 1890, Sherlock Holmes and Dr Watson receive a man unnerved by a scarred-face stalker with piercing eyes. A conspiracy reaches to the Boston criminal underworld. The whispered phrase ‘the House of Silk’ hints at a deadly foe.

My take:

If you enjoy Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes adventures then it’s likely you will enjoy this book. Anthony Horowitz does an admirable job mimicking the style of the original tales for this new Holmes-Watson adventure. However, this mimicry extends to the perhaps less enjoyable aspects of Conan Doyle’s style. For example, characters are allowed to sit down and give three-page long monologues to explain their predicament. If that sort of thing bothered you in the original stories – which are usually only a few pages long – then you might not be able to stick with it over the 300 pages of The House of Silk.

The mystery at the heart of The House of Silk is sufficiently complex to keep you puzzled. Its resolution is also far darker than we might have come to expect from Holmes’ stories. Watson warns us of this in the prologue, but I was still surprised by just how grim the big secret turned out to be. Apart from a couple of moments which dragged slightly, the pacing is excellent and our heroes face enough peril to keep you turning the pages.

Overall: an entertaining mystery in the company of one of my favourite fictional duos. I already have the sequel waiting!

Claire Huston / Art and Soul

19 thoughts on “Review | The House of Silk (New Sherlock Holmes #1) by Anthony Horowitz

  1. Oh goody. Now I’m excited for this addition to the Sherlock canon (I’m one of those people who liked the monologues, because I thought they added to the ‘feel’ of the stories, even though I can’t stand them in other styles of books).

    Liked by 1 person

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  4. Mmm. I’m a bit afraid for the three-page long monologues. If it’s anything like Sophie Hanna’s retelling of Agatha Christie’s Monogrammed Murders, I felt there was too much talk, repetition and confusing descriptions. Didn’t like that one at all.

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    • I didn’t mind it, but then it doesn’t bother me in the original stories either. I think Moriarty will be quite different because the story isn’t narrated by Watson, so I guess that means Horowitz doesn’t have to copy Conan Doyle’s style as closely.


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