Review – Kissing Sherlock Holmes – T. D McKinney & Terry Wylis
Before I begin a review of this particular title, I must first confess that I am a Holmes fan from way back. The first book I ever owned that I bought with money of my own was the complete Sherlock Holmes. To say he is important to me would be a great understatement.
And this novel does him justice in a way many, many takes simply do not. So, as a canon purist and book fan, I’m happy enough to say that the characters between these pages are actually Holmes and Watson, not two people borrowing their names, as I find is so often the case in novels like this. This makes me unspeakably happy.
But this is not only a book for canon purists convinced that Holmes and Watson were at it. Even a passing knowledge of who Sherlock Holmes was would be more than enough to enjoy it as a nice little mystery/romance. The details like Holmes’ lime cream and heavy shag tobacco, references to incidents past and repetitions of familiar phrases certainly make for a delightful Easter egg hunt among those who have read the stories religiously, but the uninitiated, I think, would still enjoy a good story.
There is also the added advantage here of a pleasantly Doyle-like mystery going on as Holmes and Watson’s romance blossoms as well. I will be the first to admit that I spent the first ten pages or so with a look of complete horror on my face, honestly believing that everything was going to go completely the wrong way, despite knowing I was reading a book guaranteed to have a happy ending for our heroes. That kind of writing takes skill, and whilst the voice isn’t quite the same as Doyle’s, I’m not sure I’d want it to be. The combined voices of T. D McKinney and Terry Wylis are very pleasant, and the language and structure was suitably Victorian not to be off-putting.
Even the characters not originally belonging to Doyle were believable, likeable where they were supposed to be and otherwise. All in all, a very enjoyable read, and one completed for me in a single day with only the most necessary of breaks.
My complaints (as there must be some) are few and probably only relevant to me and others as prone to being sticklers for the rules. There were one or two historical blips, which I will allow you to spot for yourself; since they were very minor and not truly important in the grand scheme of things, and the whole thing could have done with one last proof-read – I was particularly thrown at one point by the mention of two adjourning properties, among a few other instances of what would appear to be a spellcheck gone wrong. However, this is hardly a fatal flaw.
Others may complain, I suppose, that the sex scenes lacked description. Given, though, that this was told in the first person and that this is Watson, I would say that they were perfectly appropriate for the characters. In other words, I say bah unto you.
As such, I am happy to give this novel 4 3/4 out of 5 stars and would heartily encourage anyone who likes the idea of Sherlock Holmes having it off with his Boswell to read it without hesitation. And I may stop writing in decidedly Victorian tones at some future point.
You can pick up a of Kissing Sherlock Holmes at Amber Quill Press.