- Paperback: 448 pages
- Publisher: Bantam; Reissue edition (July 1 1996)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0553571656
- ISBN-13: 978-0553571653
- Product Dimensions: 10.7 x 2.3 x 17.3 cm
- Shipping Weight: 227 g
- Average Customer Review: 97 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #965,080 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Beekeeper's Apprentice Paperback – Jul 1 1996
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From the Publisher
Edgar Award-winning author Laurie R. King
Sherlock Holmes meets his match in a formidable new enemy--
and his surprising new partner
"Rousing...riveting...suspenseful." --Chicago Sun-Times
"The Beekeeper's Apprentice has power to charm the most grizzled Baker Street Irregular." --Daily News, New York
"If there is a new P. D. James... I would put my money on Laurie R. King, whose A Grave Talent kept me reading deep into the night."
--The Boston Globe
"Amazing first novel with intelligence, intrigue, and intricacy...This work exhibits strong psychological undertones, compelling urgency, and dramatic action. [Laurie King is] a writer to watch." --Library Journal
"Wonderful: an intelligently and imaginatively crafted novel that's also great fun." --The Drood Review of Mystery (Editors' Choice of 1994)
From the Inside Flap
Edgar Award-winning author Laurie R. King again proves her flair for tantalizing mystery in this first novel of an acclaimed series. Long since retired from his observations of criminal humanity, Sherlock Holmes is engaged in a reclusive study of honeybee behavior on the Sussex Downs. Never did he expect to meet an intellect to match his own--until he made the acquaintance of a very modern 15-year-old girl whose mental acuity is equaled only by her audacity, tenacity, and unconventional taste for trousers and cloth caps. Under the master detective's sardonic instruction, Miss Mary Russell hones her talent for deduction, disguises, and danger--in the chilling case of a landowner's mysterious fever, and in the kidnapping of an American senator's daughter in the wilds of Wales. But her ultimate challenge is yet to come. A near-fatal bomb on her doorstep--and another on Holmes's--sends the two sleuths on the trail of a villain whose machinations scatter meaningless clues and seem utterly without motive. The bomber's objective, however, is quite clear: to end Russell and Holmes's partnership...and their lives.See all Product description
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That brilliant young woman is Mary Russell, a wealthy orphan who, at the age of fifteen, captures the imagination of Sherlock Holmes, who sees in her a kindred spirit. Under his careful tutelage, this young woman, with a mental acuity that rivals his own, over the span of several years becomes as sage a detective as Holmes. Together they have a series of adventures that involve the fine art of deduction and detection.
As their escapades escalate in complexity, they discover themselves pitted against a mind as keen as each of theirs. Their unknown adversary seems hell bent on the dissolution of their partnership and their deaths by whatever means necessary.
This is a highly entertaining work of fiction that fans of Sherlock Holmes should enjoy. Old friends, such as Dr. Watson, Myron Holmes, and Mrs. Hudson, are all part of the fabric of this book. Well-written, the characters are engaging, though the book could have used a bit more editing to make the storyline even tighter. Notwithstanding this one criticism, this is a book that will keep the reader turning the pages.
As she attends school at Oxford Mary spends her holidays with Holmes and they become involved in detective work together. Mary rescues a young girl from kidnappers and is able to help the young girl deal emotionally with her lose of innocence. Mary is able to relate to the girl's emotional turmoil through her own experience of losing her parents and brother in a car accident.
In the crimes that Holmes and Mary solve there is a common menace. A criminal master mind has been stalking Holmes and the ones he loves and all of their lives are at risk. Mary and Sherlock Holmes have to combine their great minds to figure out who this criminal mastermind is.
"The Beekeeper's Apprentice" by Laurie R. King is the first book in a series a books with Mary Russell being a detective. In this first book she learns the basics of detective work along the side of the great Sherlock Holmes himself.
There are a few things I found hard to deal with in this book. The first thing was the treatment of Dr Watson, he is treated like a baboon and there is a general feeling that Holmes wants nothing to do with Watson now that he has Mary to work with. I think it would have made more sense if Watson was embraced and still loved, rather then shunned and ridiculed. He plays a very small role so why debase him?
Another weakness with mystery novels is that so many words are spent on developing the scene of the crime and the detective work and as a result there are fewer words left for developing the characters. One thing I love about reading is falling in love with the characters and having them become my new best friends and it just does not fully develop into that type of relationship in this book, there are a few times it comes close, for example when Mary and Sherlock are in Palestine I truly feel Mary's love for who she is and how she lost her family, I loved that section, but overall they did not become fast friends with me.
This is a female power book; Mary is a great example of a female with a great intellect and of someone who gets the job done right. "The Beekeeper's Apprentice" is an excellent read for young adult female readers who are looking for strong female characters.
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