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Set in London during World War II, a thrilling murder mystery where the world’s greatest detective must uncover the truth behind a seemingly impossible series of high-profile assassinations.
Across the city, prominent figures in science and the military are bursting into flame and being incinerated. Convinced that the Germans have deployed a new terror weapon, a desperate government turns to the one man who can track down the source of this dreadful menace—Sherlock Holmes.
The quest for a solution drives Holmes into an uneasy alliance with the country’s most brilliant scientific genius, Professor James Moriarty. Only Sherlock Holmes knows the truth that behind his façade of respectability, Moriarty is the mastermind behind a vast criminal empire.
As they together pursue the trail of incendiary murders, Holmes is quite sure that Moriarty is playing a double-game—and that there lies ahead a duel to the death from which they will not both survive.
About the Author
Robert J. Harris was born in Scotland and studied at the University of St Andrews, where he graduated with honors. He is the author of A Study in Crimson, the first in his World War II mystery series featuring Sherlock Holmes, and The Thirty-One Kings. Both novels have been acclaimed by critics and readers alike. Robert lives in St. Andrews, Scotland.
“At the start of Harris’s strong sequel to 2020’s A Study in Crimson: Sherlock Holmes 1942, Holmes is consulted by Inspector Lestrade after three men spontaneously combust in a matter of weeks, causing a panic. Fans of the Basil Rathbone Holmes movies will be eager to learn more.”
— Publishers Weekly
"Fans of Sherlock Holmes will welcome this latest addition to the great detective’s myth."
— Historical Novel Society
“Here, Holmes is an action hero. He duels, brawls, swims, and climbs cliffs, all described in prose so vivid one can almost watch the action. In addition to tracking the efforts of Holmes and his team, Harris also explores a melancholy side to the sleuth's personality.”
Praise for A Study in Crimson:
"Harris’ take on the iconic characters is outstanding."
"A Study in Crimson is an engaging read. The game, as Harris says in his preface, 'is once more afoot'—and in fine fashion."
— Historical Novels Society
“Robert J. Harris’s lively Sherlock Holmes pastiche transports readers to a blacked-out London during World War II. In two previous books, the author resurrected John Buchan’s World War I-era character Richard Hannay to good effect and with strong period flavor. A Study in Crimsonachieves a similar mix of action-adventure, detective savvy and Holmesian surprise.”
— Tom Nolan, The Wall Street Journal
"Besides providing the duo with a worthy challenge, Harris makes his Watson an intelligent and competent sidekick. Both the strong characterization and plot bode well for a sequel."
— Publishers Weekly (starred)
"Harris successfully captures Holmes’ brilliance, talent, and arrogance, as well as Watson’s dogged devotion to Holmes and the atmosphere in London during the dark days of war. The case he has imagined for Holmes to solve is both thoroughly challenging and pleasingly multilayered. A satisfying read."
"A Study in Crimson does right by its venerated source material while putting a new spin on Conan Doyle's characters by rejiggering their historical context. Harris's mystery is up to snuff. He does yeoman's work with Watson's narration, capturing the good doctor's starry-eyed bemusement with the fustily fastidious detective."
— Shelf Awareness