When Mrs. Clara Hudson came home from the market she had no cause to feel uneasy. It was a beautiful day, she had to prepare for a party, and she had perfect strawberries. But something felt wrong, smelt odd. She put the kettle on and set out to find Mary. Instead she found muddy footprints, a broken lamp, a slim knife jutting from the wall, drag marks leading to the door, and two pools of blood. – a lot of blood. Now she recognized the odd smell. It was the smell of gunshot, and Mary is nowhere to be found. Surely Laurie King wouldn’t kill off Mary . . . or would she?
This book was a departure from the usual Holmes and Russell adventure. It is mostly about Mrs. Hudson’s backstory. Yes, the long suffering housekeeper has a backstory. It takes us to her parents, her early life in Australia, and her struggle to survive. Then it’s on to London and society, an illegitimate child and a meeting with the young Sherlock Holmes. I had always considered Mrs. Hudson to be just background and I enjoyed learning of her colorful past. But I couldn’t help wondering . . . was I was being set up for a new female sidekick?
eGalley review Publication date 4.5.16