Title: Sherlock Holmes: A Betrayal in Blood by Mark. A Latham
Published by: Titan Books
Publication date: 28th March 2017
Genre: Thrillers & Mystery
Amazon UK – Waterstones
Man or Monster?
It is 1894, and the news of a Transylvanian nobleman’s death at the hands of a certain Professor Van Helsing is the talk of London.
Unsatisfied at the acquittal of the professor, Mycroft Holmes asks Sherlock to investigate what truly led to the deaths of Lucy Westenra and the mysterious aristocrat. The newspapers are full of inconsistencies and wild supernatural theories, and as Holmes digs deeper, he suspects that those hailed as heroes are not what they seem. The clues point to an innocent man framed and murdered for crimes he did not commit, and Holmes and Watson find themselves targeted at every turn, as what began as a quest to clear one man’s name reveals a conspiracy that draws them to the mountains of Transylvania and the infamous Castle Dracula.
A huge thank you to Titan Books for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!
It’s been a while since I’ve read some Sherlock Holmes books and I was excited to read this one because it also focuses on Bram Stoker’s Dracula and the aftermath of the story. I would definitely recommend reading Dracula before you read this or at least knowing the story. If you don’t know what happens in Dracula then you most likely won’t understand what happens in this book. Sherlock and Watson are investigating the death of Lucy Westenra and questioning whether it really was down to the supernatural or if it was simply just a man who was in the wrong place at the wrong time.
I’ve only read about half of Dracula but I studied it at university so I know the story well and analysed a lot of scenes. It was interesting seeing all of the characters presented in a different light because I first saw them as the heroes and Dracula as the villain. But this book twists this around and makes the heroes the villains and Dracula the innocent party. It’d be interesting to read Dracula now with that in mind and seeing if any of the heroes do have a hidden side to them. This book calls upon certain scenes from Dracula and I remembered them really well so it was easy to picture that particular scene in my mind. But then I saw them in a different light and I couldn’t help but find myself believing they were the villains. Mark A. Latham just did a brilliant job writing this and he made it really believable. He had some great and shocking plot twists I wasn’t expecting. I really love the title A Betrayal in Blood, it just fits with the story perfectly.
“Oh? Does the great Sherlock Holmes have a weakness?”
“Of course. It is you, Watson.”
Now onto the main part. How were Sherlock and Watson portrayed? For me they were betrayed perfectly. Everything about them was done perfectly. I’ve read a lot of the original stories so obviously I’d be judging Sherlock and Watson. I wouldn’t want to read a book that doesn’t portray them accurately. I love the relationship they had in this story and it felt true to the originals. Sherlock was his same snarky self and Watson ever tolerant of his behaviour. But what really stood out for me in this book was the quote above. It’s just such a beautiful quote and it made me so happy.
If I ever decide I just want to marathon the Sherlock Holmes stories then this would definitely be included in that. I really enjoyed this book and would definitely recommend it to other Sherlock Holmes fans. Actually I’d also recommend it if you enjoyed Dracula because it was interesting seeing the hero and villain roles switched and it kind of presented the book and the characters in a new light. I’ll definitely be checking out Titan Books’s other Sherlock Holmes stories.