Title: The Reichenbach Problem
Author: Martin Allison Booth
Publisher: Lion Fiction
First of all, this book is marketed toward a Christian audience, but this is not a Christian book. There is talk of religion in the book, but that is almost a nonissue. This is a good, old-fashioned, Sherlock Holmes type mystery. I just want readers to be aware that if they are looking for Christian themes or a story of faith renewed, this is not that story.
Arthur Conan Doyle, the creator of Sherlock Holmes, can hardly go out in public due to his fame. Everyone he meets seems to expect him to act like Holmes instead of himself and is disappointed when he does in fact act like Doyle. He is scouting out a future vacation location for himself and his family, unwillingly encountering and obtaining a fan on the way who sticks to him like glue at first. They arrive at their destination and soon thereafter a body is found at nearby Reichenbach Falls.
Doyle’s seemingly erstwhile fan encourages him to investigate, even though Doyle just wants to get away from everyone. Doyle succumbs and begins searching for clues. In the course of his search, there is breaking and entering into a locked church, examining a body before authorities or medical personnel, a fire, a shooting, and a séance to name some of the happenings. Doyle’s fan becomes disillusioned with him and decides to investigate on his own. Meanwhile, Doyle continues his own case while continuing to deal with his own love/hate relationship with Holmes.
Doyle is portrayed as “falling away” from his Catholic upbringing, and investigates psychic phenomena for scientific purposes. He doesn’t out-and-out deny God, but leaves the door open for other avenues/beliefs. He also lusts after two women in the story, but supposedly is in love and completely devoted to his wife, which I certainly didn’t like. I’m against séances, but I do understand that during this time period many people participated in them, some for entertainment and some truly searching for answers. Seekers can only find answers through seeking the Source of all truth…God. I am a fan of historical and modern British mysteries, but I found this story difficult to get into. There were some great, English, dry witticisms, but they couldn’t make up for the slow pace of the book. There was too much dialogue and not enough action. This is the first book in a trilogy, but I won’t be reading the others in this series.
My rating is 2 stars.
Note: I received a complimentary copy for an honest review of this book. The opinions shared in this review are solely my responsibility. Other reviews can be read at http://seekingwithallyurheart.blogspot.com/ . Also follow me on Twitter @lcjohnson1988, FaceBook at https://www.facebook.com/lisa.johnson.75457