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Review of Book 5 of Mary Russell/Sherlock Holmes series
The fifth installment of the Mary Russell/Sherlock Homes mystery series is an odd one. It takes place when they were only sleuth partners before they were married. As the reader will recall, the previous installment had them married. Personally, I would rather the books appear in chronological order, but that is a minor issue.
At the request of Sherlock’s brother, Mycroft, Sherlock and Mary travel to Palenstine to help solve a series of murders that may lead to the destruction of the sacred city of Jerusalem. In Palenstine, Sherlock and Mary meet two Arab figures—Ali and Mahmoud—who become their travel guides and are working on a mission for England’s government. During this time (around 1919), Palenstine was under British rule.
Their travels lead them on various adventures with Jerusalem being their final destination. There is a series of passages in the novel where Mary describes Jerusalem. It is really a beautiful piece of writing. Mary is not a very religious (in the traditional sense) person, even though she studies theology. However, it is clear in this part of the novel that she has respect for the religions of the region and deep respect for Jerusalem.
While I was disappointed to have to revert back to when Sherlock and Mary were not married, it was an interesting story. It could become a little complicated at times, but I still recommend it. I encourage readers to stick with it despite its complexity. The novel makes the reader think especially in comparing the Middle East of 1919 to that of 2022.
Next Novel in Series: Justice Hall
Next Books to Review: Keeping Them Safe (Love Inspired) and The Letter from Briarton Park