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Although O Jerusalem is Laurie King's fifth book in her Holmes-Russell series, it actually takes us back to the era of her first book, The Beekeeper's Apprentice. Perhaps King was afraid that her characters, Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes, were becoming too cozy as an old married couple, and she wanted to recreate the edgy sexual tension of their first encounter.
It's 1918. Nineteen-year-old Mary and her fiftysomething mentor are forced to flee England to escape a deadly adversary. Sherlock's well-connected brother Mycroft sends them to Palestine to do some international sleuthing. Here, a series of murders threatens the fragile peace.
Laurie King connects us, through details of language, custom, history, and sensual impressions, to this very alien environment. Russell, Holmes, and two marvelously imagined Arab guides named Mahmoud and Ali trek through the desert and visit ancient monasteries clinging like anthills to cliffs. They also find time to take tea with the British military legend Allenby in Haifa and skulk through or under the streets of Jerusalem. King puts us into each scene so quickly and completely that her narrative flow never falters.
Stepping back in time also gives King a chance to show us Holmes through the eyes of a Russell not yet as full of love as a honeymooner, nor as complacent as a comfortable wife. "There it was--sardonic, superior, infuriating," Mary says about Holmes's voice at one point.
Wisdom is knowing when, and how much, to shake things up--even in a successful series. Laurie King is a wise woman indeed. --Dick Adler --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
O Jerusalem marks the fifth appearance of Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes (The Moor, LJ 12/97). This time around they have fled to Palestine on a mission for Mycroft Holmes. Disguised as itinerant Muslims and paired with two Arab spies, Russell and Holmes travel through the Holy Land trying to figure out exactly why Mycroft has sent them. A pair of seemingly unrelated murders sets them on the track of a brilliant and power-hungry killer. Only Holmes and Russell (along with some unexpected allies) can stop their adversary from destroying JerusalemAif they can get to him in time. King's clear prose and her vivid depiction of a British-occupied Palestine torn between opposing cultures are the book's main strengths. A bit slow at the start, the action gradually builds to a satisfying and dramatic conclusion. Strongly recommended for all public libraries.
-ALaurel Bliss, New Haven, CT
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Laurie King has written another great book as a prequel to her Justice Hall novel. I get something new out of it every time I read it.Published on Sept. 28 2009 by P. Palmer
King's brilliant character development in 'O Jerusalem' is first-rate. Russell and Holmes are tested by their two shadowy companions, and not one of the four are happy with the... Read morePublished on May 31 2009 by Amazon Customer
O'Jerusalem by LAUIRE R.King Is a personal accounts of Sherlock Homels case written by his young partner Mary Russell. Read morePublished on Feb. 21 2004
Despite the low rating I have offered on this book, I have to admit that I enjoyed a good deal of it thanks mostly to Ms. Read morePublished on July 31 2003 by Mark Savary
Great cast of characters, wonderful history, and the scenery comes alive before your eyes. I recommend this book!Published on July 12 2003 by Avid reader
I don't understand why I've seen so many reviews that put this book down so horribly! I loved this story personally, rivalling it with "The Beekeeper's Apprentice. Read morePublished on June 4 2003 by "ali-alina"
I am never disappointed by Ms. King's Mary Russell series. It is a wonderful ride through early 20th Century history. And the mystery is always fun.Published on March 13 2003