Ms. King has created an interesting scenario where a young woman, Mary Russell, meets Sherlock Holmes in the country after he has retired. She impresses him with her intelligence and powers of observation. You might even say that she is what Sherlock Holmes would have been like if he had been born a girl. The first part of the book is about how she comes to have a close relationship with Holmes as the Beekeeper’s apprentice. In this case, Sherlock does keep bees. The latter part of the book is filled with investigative casework.
Ms. King’s writing is very good, and Mary Russell is a memorable character. The book definitely deserves four stars although I would have loved to see the first part of the book expanded into a full novel.