A Study in Charlotte

A Study in Charlotte

Book - 2016
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Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson descendants, Charlotte and Jamie, students at a Connecticut boarding school, team up to solve a murder mystery.
Publisher: New York, NY : Katherine Tegen Books, an imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers, [2016]
Edition: First edition.
ISBN: 9780062398901
0062398903
Branch Call Number: YA FIC CAVA
Characteristics: 321 pages ; 22 cm.

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DPLjosie May 08, 2019

Great story! I'm not a super big mystery reader, so it has to be a good one to keep my interest. The characters are well-drawn and the backstory of being Sherlock and Watson descendants makes this book both unique and familiar.

JCLS_Ashland_Kristin Mar 21, 2019

Teen mystery fans will enjoy this modern extension of the Sherlock Holmes universe.

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goddessbeth
Jan 18, 2019

This was a fun story and a quick read, with plenty of hat tips to Arthur Conan Doyle's original works (as expected). The basic premise is: Doyle's writings were not fictional but (somewhat inflated) biographical. Sherlock Holmes and Dr. John Watson actually lived and solved crimes, and James Moriarty actually lived and was a master villain. And now, in modern day America, the direct descendent of Holmes and the direct descendent of Watson (our narrator, James) have met for the first time.

As with their ancestors before them, James Watson has a bit of a starry-eyed awe about Charlotte Holmes and is fiercely loyal to her; Charlotte Holmes has been programmed since youth to be a master detective but is not well-adapted by any stretch of the imagination. This is not to say the characters are totally flat- Charlotte is developed, with a serious drug addiction, trauma, and of course her childhood totally ruining her for normal social interaction. And James has a serious anger problem and holds grudges against everyone except Charlotte. He actually felt the lesser developed of the two, but maybe that's because we the readers are already in his head, trying to figure out Charlotte.

I liked the hat tips to the original stories, especially A Study in Scarlet (no spoilers, but it does make the ending somewhat less twisty). I liked the pacing, and the side characters (whose stories we feel we've just walked in on, and never really get more of). There's still plenty of unresolved issues at the end of the story to keep hungry for. Really, only two things stopped me from loving this book, instead of liking it:

The connection between Charlotte and Jamie felt forced (he was just her puppy from the beginning with no reason WHY other than he'd always fantasized that she'd be his best friend), and I'd rather (always) see a really great friendship between two members of the opposite sex, even if one is attracted to the other, than a friends-to-romance thing. I think male/female friendship sans sexual tension is severely underrepresented in media, to our detriment. We need more models of friendship, and fewer of Disneyesque romance.
I felt disconnected from a lot of the conclusions that were drawn, especially by everyman James. At times, the author had just enough for me to see the how he would connect the dots, but other times he just came out with some conclusion out of left field. It left me feeling like the characters had been continuing their adventures offscreen, where I couldn't see, or like I'm a total idiot for not understanding how he drew that conclusion.

Regardless, I may continue with the series, because I do enjoy authors creating stories that are a love letter to their fandom of choice. And this very much is, in a lot of ways.

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Linyarai
Sep 11, 2018

I have mixed feelings on this book. I almost really liked it, but some parts were a struggle and overall it felt really forced. I think it was too much like a classic Sherlock Holmes story and wasn't original enough. I'd probably like the characters more after a second story with them.

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Noellegrace67
Jan 03, 2018

Very good, 10/10 would recommend. If you liked Sherlock(the TV series) you will probably like this as well. Probably best for people over 13 who are OK with some language. I really liked the characters. I thought that they were well written. The story defiantly suckered me in and I was kinda dead to the world for a few hours. The description was very nice and it was easy to tell exactly what was going on with the story. The parallels between the characters in this book and the original ones was nice as well.

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Gwen006
Jul 21, 2017

My 11 year old daughter checked this out, randomly turned to page 15 and found the "f" word and the "a" word.

All I could tell her was that I suppose the author has a lack of imagination.

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red_sheep_101
May 16, 2017

I didn't really enjoy the book as a whole very much. It kind of kept lagging on and on, and there weren't enough action scenes to keep me entertained. Also, the vocabulary was pretty advanced.

samdog123 May 02, 2017

Absolutely a wonderful read for anyone who loves Sherlock Holmes mysteries. This one is geared towards teens and young adults due to some mature subject matter. The twist here is that Holmes is Charlotte Holmes and Watson is Jamie Watson. After they meet up at a private school in the U.S., Holmes and Watson become a precarious pair as they learn to know and trust each other. When someone begins copying Sherlock Holmes stories to try and blame the crimes on them, then 'the game's afoot.' This is the first book in a series--I listened to in on the audio book version and really loved it. Next in the series is 'The Last of August,' a play on words-when you read the story you'll get it.

TSCPL_RachaelS Apr 04, 2017

I listened to this as an audiobook (Hoopla) and enjoyed every aspect of it; the throwbacks to the originals, the incorporation of heavy teen issues and the relationship between Charlotte and Watson. The only downside was that Watson's voice was supposed to be British and the narrator hardly included any of that. I would have been delighted if the whole thing had been read like the epilogue was.

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darladoodles
Feb 02, 2017

I thought this modern twist on Holmes & Watson was creative and beautifully written. The core of the relationship is transferred into this story with modern conveniences/dilemmas and the tension that exists in the original pairing.

Holmes needs Watson for many reasons, but also struggles with her superior observation skills and keeping him in the loop. It will be interesting to see how many old Holmes tales are resurrected in the next installment.

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Gwen006
Jul 21, 2017

Gwen006 thinks this title is suitable for 18 years and over

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abaumler
Sep 06, 2017

Rival teens Charlotte and Jamie, descendants of Sherlock Holmes and John Watson, investigate the mystery of why they are being framed for murder at their American boarding school.

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