Okay. Guys. I’ve been putting off writing this review for almost six months because I just can’t with this book. It’s SO good. I haven’t gone into hard-core fangirl mode over a book in a while, but A Study in Charlotte was it for me. THIS WAS IT.
Jamie Watson is new to Sherringford, a prep school in Connecticut where he got a rugby scholarship that just so happens to be near his estranged father. All seems well, except… Sherringford is also home to Charlotte Holmes, who is so much like her great-great-great grandfather that it’s a little frightening. They don’t get off to a good start, and Jamie fears that they are destined to be rivals. That is, until there’s a murder on campus that is ripped straight out of one of the stories of Sherlock Holmes, and Jamie and Charlotte are both being framed for it. Charlotte, of course, can solve the case, and despite everything, Jamie finds it easy to trust her. Can she solve it in time?
Before I start gushing, I want to give some credit where it’s due. Brittany Cavallaro knows her Sherlock Holmes. This story made references to the original stories, but with a twist—John Watson was real and was the actual author, and Conan Doyle was some sort of front man. I loved how simple it was to make this all a believable part of the world. Not only that, but she really captured the essence of Sherlock Holmes in Charlotte, and the core of John Watson in Jamie. They’re their own people, their own characters, but you can see traits that may run through family lines, and it’s all so fascinating and well-researched. Cavallaro is SO GOOD.
I purchased this book on a whim before we took a summer vacation, but I chose it for two reasons—first, because I love the original Sherlock Holmes stories; and second, because I LOVE strong female characters with attitude. And Charlotte, man—ATTITUDE. But I loved it. I loved every second of it. I loved that she and Jamie had to make their own way as friends, because she didn’t care about their families’ histories. I loved that Jamie felt protective of her, even though she could probably kick his butt in nearly any situation. I loved that their relationship is ambiguous throughout the book, but in a way that gives the shippers out there (ME. I WILL GO DOWN WITH THIS SHIP.) hope for the future of Jamie and Charlotte. I just… I can’t even put into words all the things I love about this book. I had a book hangover for weeks. WEEKS. I dreamed about Jamie and Charlotte. When I blurbed a quick review on my blog back in the summer, I gave it six out of five stars. Even rereading the synopsis on Goodreads made me a little achy on the inside. This book is my end-all be-all.
Honestly, the only criticism I have is that I’m afraid the sequel won’t live up to the first book. And if that’s my only problem, I think I’m doing pretty well.
A Study in Charlotte is available where books are sold. The second book in the Charlotte Holmes trilogy, The Last of August, will be released on February 14, 2017.