King returns with her signature blend of meticulously drawn historic moment, compelling mystery, and my personal favorite detective couple. As you might expect of a mystery set in the region of Transylvania, there is a question of vampires--and bathing in the blood of virgins. This question is tied, however, to bigger political questions when Queen Marie of Romania is the apparent target of gossip-mongering.
In this installment, Russell and Holmes collaborate more than they've been able to in recent times to sort out motives and machinations in a complex and changing world. Satisfyingly, they unravel more than just who is behind the main plot, and enable others they encounter to move forward free of some of their burdens--another thing I deeply love about how King writes her people and how her Holmes and Russell live in their world.
A queen, a castle, a dark and ageless threat—all await Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes in this chilling new adventure.
The queen is Marie of Roumania: the doubly royal granddaughter of Victoria, Empress of the British Empire, and Alexander II, Tsar of Russia. A famous beauty who was married at seventeen into Roumania’s young dynasty, Marie had beguiled the Paris Peace Conference into returning her adopted country’s long-lost provinces, singlehandedly transforming Roumania from a backwater into a force.
The castle is Bran: a tall, quirky, ancient structure perched on high rocks overlooking the border between Roumania and its newly regained territory of Transylvania. The castle was a gift to Queen Marie, a thank-you from her people, and she loves it as she loves her own children.
The threat is . . . well, that is less clear. Shadowy figures, vague whispers, the fears of girls, dangers that may be only accidents. But this is a land of long memory and hidden corners, a land that had known Vlad the Impaler, a land from whose churchyards the shades creep.
When Queen Marie calls, Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes are as dubious as they are reluctant. But a young girl is involved, and a beautiful queen. Surely it won’t take long to shine light on this unlikely case of what would seem to be strigoi?
Or, as they are known in the West . . . vampires.
About the Author
Laurie R. King is the award-winning, bestselling author of sixteen Mary Russell mysteries, five contemporary novels featuring Kate Martinelli, and many acclaimed stand-alone novels such as Folly, Touchstone, The Bones of Paris, and Lockdown. She lives in Northern California, where she is at work on her next Mary Russell mystery.
Praise for Castle Shade
“King smoothly slips in fascinating historical details about the life of Marie of Roumania, all the while keeping the plot galloping along at high speed. This is a treat for old fans and newcomers alike.”—Publishers Weekly
“Highly recommend for historical mystery fans who have followed the series, as well as readers looking for historical heroines with agency such as Maisie Dobbs, Bess Crawford, or Phryne Fisher.”—Library Journal (starred review)
“Each book in the Russell and Holmes series is a treat. . . . The novels are extremely atmospheric. . . . Kudos to Laurie King for keeping the legend [of Sherlock Holmes] alive with such entertaining novels, and Mary Russell keeping him on his toes.”—Mystery & Suspense Magazine
“As per the customary quality of her work, Laurie R. King has imbued Castle Shade with all the creativity and intelligence deserving of a series that both immortalizes an ingenious, feminist heroine of her own making and continues the legacy of the astonishingly observant and eminently logical London gentleman whose name has become synonymous with detection.”—BookTrib
“[Castle Shade] has everything you want in a book. . . . A good mystery, fun characters and a story you don’t want to put down.”—Red Carpet Crash
Praise for Riviera Gold
“The definition of binge-able . . . a bright and shiny Cȏte d’Azur distraction.”—Los Angeles Times
“Extends the prolific [and] superior series . . . [Holmes and Russell] continue to have ripping adventures.”—Seattle Times
“[A] delightful new series entry . . . readers will love the setting and the twists of the mystery.”—Library Journal (starred review)
“A refreshing summer breeze of a mystery novel that is so cool you can practically hear the jazz dripping right off its pages.”—Bookreporter
The award-winning novels of Laurie R. King are . . .
“A lively adventure in the very best of intellectual company.”—The New York Times
“Erudite, fascinating . . . by all odds the most successful re-creation of the famous inhabitant of 221B Baker Street ever attempted.”—Houston Chronicle
“Whip-smart, suspenseful and intricately plotted.”—Shelf Awareness