SHERLOCK HOLMES AND THE SHADWELL SHADOWS Baker Street, irregular
released 15 November 448 pages | Hardback/ebook Author James lovegrove Publisher Titan books
Setting the forensic logic of Arthur Conan Doyle against the gods and monsters of HP Lovecraft, The Shadwell Shadows launches a trilogy of uncanny adventures with one foot in The Strand Magazine and another in Weird Tales.
Playfully blurring the lines between fact and fiction, James Lovegrove affects to have received the Cthulhu Casebook manuscripts from a distant relative of Lovecraft. Are they really the work of Dr John Watson, finally unburdening himself of the real secrets of his Baker Street years? Could they have been written by Lovecraft? Or is it all an elaborate hoax?
The early chapters are rooted in the familiar Holmesian milieu of Hansom cabs and Limehouse opium dens, before events gradually move into the more fantastical Lovecraft territory of snake men and cosmic beings.
Throughout, Lovegrove’s rich, vivid prose helps steer the book clear of penny dreadful territory – though Holmes purists should still steel themselves for generous helpings of what Mycroft calls “mystical guff”. Paul Kirkley
Other recent Holmes mashups include A Study In Brimstone and Sherlock Holmes And The Servants Of Hell.