Thomas, Sherry. The Hollow of Fear. New York: Berkley, 2018.
Paperback | $15.00 USD | ISBN-13: 978-0425281420 | 326 pages | Historical Mystery
The Hollow of Fear is yet another great installment in the Lady Sherlock mystery series. One of the highlights of this one was the developing relationship between Charlotte and Lord Ingram. Despite the fact that it did start off in an morally problematic place in book one, the circumstances of both the last book and this one clear the way for them to potentially have a future together…although not quite yet.
As for Charlotte herself, I continue to find her an endearing and strong heroine, although I did find her fondness of sweets and the way it was handled this time around grated on me a bit more. Don’t get me wrong, I love a heroine that has an acknowledged vice, but there’s a way to acknowledge them, especially this one, without it feeling like the author is shaming the heroine for them. While this is definitely up for interpretation, and anything concerning the issue of weight and eating habits can be a slippery slope, I did feel it just felt a bit overly emphasized in a negative way.
But the mystery was, like the previous installments, well-crafted, and I enjoyed the revelations that tied the mystery together in a way I did not expect, as well as connecting it to some of the ongoing plotlines, like Moriarty and the Marbletons. While some of this was foreshadowed in the previous books, especially A Conspiracy in Belgravia, I found myself especially shocked about the final plot twist where Lady Ingram was concerned, especially since so little about her family life prior to her marriage was confided in the previous books.
I would recommend this book (and series) to fans who are looking for a new twist on Sherlock Holmes, or to those who are into fun and original historical mysteries. While this series is based on classic characters, it is a great series in its own right.