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The Moor [Mass Market Paperback]

Laurie R. King
3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (45 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Jan. 5 1999 Mary Russell Novels
Though theirs is a marriage of true equals, when Sherlock Holmes summons his wife and partner Mary Russell to the eerie scene of his most celebrated case, she abandons her Oxford studies to aid his investigation. But this time, on Dartmoor, there is more to the matter than a phantom hound. Sightings of a spectral coach carrying a long-dead noblewoman over the moonlit moor have heralded a mysterious death, the corpse surrounded by oversize paw prints. Here on this wild and foreboding moor, Russell and Holmes embark on a quest with few clues save a fanatic anthropologist, an ancestral portrait, a moorland witch, and a lowly–but most revealing–hedgehog. As Holmes and Russell anticipate, a rational explanation lies beneath the supernatural events–but one darker than they could have imagined. And one that could end their lives in this harsh and desolate land.

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From Amazon

Longtime fans of Arthur Conan Doyle's fictional detective, Sherlock Holmes, might think that their favorite sleuth met his fate at the hands of Dr. Moriarty at the Reichenbach Falls. Anyone who believes that, however, obviously hasn't read Laurie R. King's delightful series featuring Holmes and his wife(!), Mary Russell. In The Beekeeper's Apprentice, Holmes succumbs to the Oxford scholar's charms; now, in The Moor, fourth in the series, Holmes and Russell are summoned to Devonshire to solve a tin miner's mysterious death. Lonely Dartmoor provides plenty of opportunities for King to both relate the haunting legends of that part of the world and offer some amusing revisions to one of Holmes's most famous cases, The Hound of the Baskervilles. Though Holmes purists might resent the liberties taken with their hero, readers in search of a strong female protagonist, some fascinating local history, and spooky ambience will enjoy The Moor. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From School Library Journal

YA?The Hound of the Baskervilles is back?or is it? Certainly Sherlock Holmes thought he had sorted the whole matter out some 30 years earlier, but now his lifelong friend, the curmudgeonly Rev. Sabine Baring-Gould, calls Holmes to Dartmoor to sort out new sightings and solve an eerie murder. The detective in turn calls for his new wife, who arrives promptly at Baring-Gould's quasi-Elizabethan house, situated on the edge of the oppressive moor. As in the previous books, King chronicles the adventures of a strong young woman who is a wonderful match and foil for a very Conan Doyle-like Sherlock and creates a wonderful sense of time and place. In this case, it is Dartmoor in 1924. The moor becomes a looming presence and as much of a character as Baring-Gould, the local farmers and peasantry, and the new owners of Baskerville Hall. Familiarity with the original tale is not necessary, but those unacquainted with it before reading this book will surely want to go back to it. King has again successfully brought the famous sleuth into the 20th century and provided him with an assistant much more his match than poor Dr. Watson. The plot is thought-provoking, the solution satisfyingly Holmesian, and the whole adventure gratifying. This is definitely a worthy continuation of a hopefully longer series. It's not only an excellent mystery, but also a fine introduction to Holmes and a more-than-adequate survey of the time.?Susan H. Woodcock, Kings Park Library, Burke, VA
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Read During a Thunderstorm May 14 2004
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I'm rather surprised by the several negative reviews of The Moor. Certainly, it is a little different from the other Mary Russell novels, but I found it to be so enjoyable, only falling short of The Beekeeper's Apprentice. The pace moves like a little stroll in the park, and it's thoroughly pleasant. Mary Russell is, as always, a charming character, and I really enjoyed Holmes and Russell's quiet, rather loving interactions in this novel. The stately character of Sabine Baring-Gould (an extraordinary person in his real life also) overlooking Russell and Holmes in their treks across the moor also adds a lot to the novel, some sense of old English nostalgia. His presense as an old, sometimes difficult, friend also allows for further character development of the two primary characters. Sure, the mystery does take a backseat in the novel. With two dominant characters like Russell and Holmes, it seems there's little room left for plot, but that is how every Mary Russell novel seems to me. It's not a bad thing. Overall, I truly enjoyed The Moor. It's another excellent read in the series and is just a wonderful novel for light afternoon reading. I can't wait to read the next Mary Russell novel.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A Mediocre Installment in an Excellent Series Nov. 7 2003
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I love Laurie King's Russell/Holmes mystery series. Taking us chronologically beyond where Doyle left off, she pairs Sherlock Holmes with Mary Russell, an intelligent, witty young Jewish theologian who captures the attention of both his mind and his heart. To properly experience the series (and comprehensibly follow the development of the complex relationship between the protagonists), you must read the books in order: "Beekeeper's Apprentice", "Monstrous Regiment of Women", "Letter of Mary", and then "The Moor."
That said, "The Moor" is acceptable as a mystery novel, and hints at further character development for Holmes. For the most part, sadly, it lacks the friendly verbal sparring between Holmes and Russell which is what makes the other books so delightful.
Do read it, if only as a link through to the next in the series. Do not, however, read it before you've read its prequels.
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4.0 out of 5 stars weakest of the excellent Mary Russell series Sept. 11 2003
By audrey
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This is the fourth book by Laurie King about Mary Russell and her partner, Sherlock Holmes. King is a superb writer and she captures the eeriness of the English moor, but I was a bit disappointed with this novel, and give it a lower rating than the first three books in the series.
This is a good book -- with interesting characters and circumstances -- but the pacing is very sloooooow, the mystery is not terribly interesting and, most egregious of all, the dialogue between Russell and Holmes, usually the high point of this great series, never sparkles. Perhaps others are disappointed at the lack of detail concerning the couple's romantic life; I am more interested in their intellectual communion, and that is sorely missing here. I also noticed a fair number of typographical errors for the first time in the series, suggesting lazy or hurried writing, or perhaps a lack of editorial assistance. Perhaps Ms. King should take a rest between novels? It's a shame that this book does not live up to expectations, being a continuation (of sorts) of Holmes' greatest adventure. The mood of the moor and Baskerville Hall are great, the many characters are well written, but unfortunately the spark is not here. Still a fun read for fans, but not as good as the three previous efforts. I will continue to follow the series, but will probably buy them used.
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Format:Mass Market Paperback
I love the Mary Russell books, but I must say that this one is my least favorite of the series. While the other books in the series took me only one or two nights to read, this one took me at least two weeks, if my memory serves me. And the fact that I gave it three stars is saying something.
The plot is sluggish from the beginning, and only has a few sparkling gems in the heap. Mary Russell might as well not exist during the entire first half of the book. It is only at the end of the book when the truly interesting plot begins, and still Russell is shoved into the background. It is disappointing, to put it lightly. This is definitely not the book to read if you're new to the series. Try starting from the beginning with the first book, "The Beekeeper's Apprentice."
If you want a thrilling and well-written Mary Russell book, read "The Beekeeper's Apprentice" or "O Jerusalem", which are my personal favorites, with "Justice Hall" coming at a close second.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Clever...maybe too clever for its own good Jan. 28 2003
Format:Mass Market Paperback
"The Moor" is the fourth in the series of Mary Russell novels by acclaimed mystery author Laurie R King. For those who haven't kept up to date on the plot developments of the series - Russell is a young woman in her mid-20s and happens to be married to Sherlock Holmes (who is in his 50s or so). In their 1920s world, this partnership investigate a series of mysteries together.
"The Moor" takes place in Devonshire, more specifically around Dartmoor. As any Holmes fan can tell you, Dartmoor is the site of Baskerville Hall and thus the site of "The Hound Of The Baskervilles" - arguably Holmes' most famous case. Holmes is staying with his elderly friend, the Reverend Sabine Baring-Gould, and invites Russell to join him (she is engrossed in theological research).
It soon becomes apparent that the folktales of the Moor have come to life again. A ghostly carriage has been seen racing through the Moor, a large dog has made some appearances...and a local tin-hunter has died. Holmes, as a favour to Baring-Gould, has agreed to investigate.
What follows is pure Holmes. The smallest thing (in this case, a hedgehog) provides a major breakthrough in the case and a host of shady characters appear to be up to no good. In typical King fashion, Mycroft makes an appearance - this time by requiring Holmes to check on the progress of a top-secret military vehicle stored at the army base on the Moor. Holmes' comment to Russell when she queries the need for such a vehicle following "the war to end all wars" is a cynical one, based around the idea that war is inevitable. As we all know, Holmes was right.
The setting of this novel in Devonshire has enabled King to have a considerable amount of licence with the local dialect.
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Most recent customer reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars "The Moor" is a disappointment
I had anticipated a story with suspense, spooky, erie scenes involving the moor. At least, I was hoping for some supernatural scenes, even if they would be eventually explained... Read more
Published on May 28 2004 by Joseph M. Patane
4.0 out of 5 stars Take your time to enjoy this
In the fourth book of the Russell - Holmes series Laurie R. King
presents us with a novel that echoes the time and pace of the surroundings - the moor. Read more
Published on May 10 2004 by R. BULL
2.0 out of 5 stars A reader from New York City
This book is awfully slow going and pretty boring. The author spends most of her time describing things like her opinions, her surroundings, and the books she reads to fill in the... Read more
Published on Jan. 31 2004
5.0 out of 5 stars The Moor, Part 2
I just finished reading this book. I love the way Ms. King has written this series. I have enjoyed the series very much so far adn look forward to reading more adventures of my... Read more
Published on July 17 2003 by Denise K. Perkins
4.0 out of 5 stars mary russell is a formidable counter to holmes
this is my first foray into laurie king's world and mary russell. the tale is has a decidely vicrtorian feel and doesn't make her heroine too feminist acting considering the times. Read more
Published on July 10 2003 by Reality tourist
3.0 out of 5 stars A bit disappointing.
THE MOOR starts well and ends well, but it's way too long -- with a lot of seemingly repetitive sequences (how many baths? how many walks on the moor? Read more
Published on Oct. 30 2002 by MLPlayfair
3.0 out of 5 stars Where's Mary?
I am reading the Mary Russell books in order so I, obviously, don't have a problem with the premise of Mary and Sherlock working together. Read more
Published on Oct. 7 2002 by Michael Sullivan
1.0 out of 5 stars Awful!
This was my first and last Mary Russell novel and it doesn't surprise me that I'm not the first reviewer to say that. Read more
Published on Aug. 12 2002
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