Review: Night Break (Young Sherlock Holmes #8)

Our book/reading group has been reading and reviewing quite a few books this term. This is one of mine.

This is the eighth book in the Young Sherlock Holmes series. As with the other stories in this series the period detail is well-researched and convincing, the characters are engaging and the plotting is excellent.

Night Break (Young Sherlock Holmes, #8)

Night Break by Andrew Lane

In this story the Holmes brothers, Sherlock and  Mycroft, are called back to their family home for the funeral of their mother. They begin to prepare for her funeral and sort through what needs to be done as well as trying to decide how best to support their sister, Emma.
They are all dealing with a sense of loss so when Emma claims that faceless men are visiting the house Sherlock doesn’t believe her. However Sherlock investigates and discovers that three men in bizarre disguises have broken into the house in the middle of the night. When Sherlock finds them he is viciously attacked. The family seems to be caught up in some strange mystery that they have no understanding or knowledge of.
The next occurrence involves men, posing as builders, attacking their sister’s fiancé. Both Mycroft and Sherlock independently deduce that the mystery is somehow connected to the building of the Suez Canal. The paths they then follow turn out to be very different, as Sherlock, with his ever loyal friend Matty, setting out for Egypt, determined to discover just what is going on. He feels betrayed by his brother and follows his own instincts to get to the bottom of what is going on. The nature of loyalties and friendship is called into question before the book is finished.

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Made a few years ago, the trailer below is a good introduction to the series and should whet the appetite of all young crime and detective fiction readers

Young Sherlock Holmes

I have just finished reading the first in the Young Sherlock Holmes series Death Cloud by Andrew Lane. I have always loved the Sherlock Holmes stories by Arthur Conan Doyle and have also collected all the movie and television adaptations over the years.

This first in a new series of books is a good adventure story set in Victorian England. It does not matter if you have not read Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes stories, this one works fine on its own.
Death Cloud is a fast-paced, interesting and easy to read story that should appeal to many YA readers. We have a unit on the crime genre and I have converted a few boys into Sherlock Holmes readers. This story and the other stories I have been reading recently, the Tim Pigott-Smith stories about the Baker Street Irregulars (First mentioned by Arthur Conan Doyle in the Study In Scarlet) are a good addition to the Sherlock Holmes section of the library.

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Young Sherlock Holmes – still waiting to read

It is always frustrating when books have been published overseas and we are avidly waiting for them here in Australia. Sherlock Holmes stories are a favourite of mine and so were the Young James Bond Books by Charlie Higson. I have been very keen to read the Young Sherlock Holmes stories when I read an article about the proposed series last year.

Last week I read some reviews that were very complimentary and today I saw the book trailer. I would have to wait until the 1st of August to get them from Australian booksellers. It seems odd not to have publication and sales dates closer when we have ready access to resources and information on a worldwide basis.

Young Sherlock Holmes – coming soon

In the beginning there was Arthur Conan Doyle and his original detective and the many reprints that followed.

Arthur Conan Doyle

Arthur Conan Doyle

If you have read this blog before you will know that I have been involved in presenting the crime fiction genre to our year 8 students. Sherlock Holmes is one of the major authors I talk about when we are looking at the history and development of the crime novel.

The popularity of the Sherlock Holmes stories continues still. There are other authors who are also fans and have tried their hand at writing stories that involve this great literary character. Some of the stories, by other authors, involving Sherlock Holmes include  Caleb Carr and Laurie R. King and her Mary Russell Holmes stories.


There have also been many screen adaptations, including Young Sherlock Holmes. This was followed by Anthony Read’s  Baker Street Boys(books that our boys have started to enjoy  and a tv series that we haven’t seen) and Enola (Enola Holmes being the younger sister of Sherlock Holmes and Mycroft Holmes and the protagonist of a series by Nancy Springer).

Guardian article reports that the publisher Macmillan has revealed they will release a series of adventures about a young Sherlock Holmes The tales of teenage detective hope to imitate success of Charlie Higson’s bestselling Young Bond series. These books have been very popular with our students, along with other young spies series, examples of some are the  Alex Rider series(Stormbreaker), Cherub series, The Boy Soldier series (McNab) and Alpha Force series (Ryan)

The estate of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle has authorised a series of books detailing the life of the teenage Sherlock Holmes, which will see the budding detective falling in love for the first time, learning the deductive skills that serve him so well in his adult life, and making the acquaintance of a certain Dr Watson.


Starting at age 14 and tracing Holmes’s life at school and then at university, the books will be written by author Andrew Lane – a self-confessed “super-fan” who has a collection of over 100 Holmes-related books – kicking off with a case referenced but never explained by Conan Doyle, The Colossal Schemes of Baron Maupertius. This will see Holmes, who is sent to stay with relatives in Surrey after his soldier father is unexpectedly posted to India, uncovering a series of murders.

The series, to be published by Macmillan Children’s Booksfrom spring 2010, will end with Holmes meeting Watson in the laboratories at St Barts Hospital in London.

So they have decided, if it’s good enough (successful) for Young Bond then why not Sherlock Holmes?

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