Book Review: Martians On Baker Street

The Martian Menace is a Sherlock Holmes written by Eric Brown. It is published by Titan Books and one of the recent additions in its range known as The Further Adventures of Sherlock Holmes.

Brown has concocted a world where Martians now occupy the Earth in the early twentieth century and have done so for a number of years. Holmes is engaged by the Martians to solve the murder of an ambassador. He manages to complete the investigation and is summoned to the Red Planet a few years later to work another case. Holmes and Dr. Watson are soon informed that they are about to be pawns in a more concerted effort from the Martians to fully take over Earth and destroy humankind. They encounter several literary figures of the time including Herbert George Wells and G.K. Chesterton. An old adversary of Holmes’ also seems to be at the heart of the Martians’ genocidal intentions.

Yes, there is another one where a pastiche author takes the crime solving duo into other genres and other realms. It is obviously supposed to be rather ridiculous, but there was not much in this effort to make this unique. Of course, I am biased against these efforts that has Holmes and Watson cross paths with aliens and other historical and literary figures of their era on a regular basis. Brown doesn’t stand out as an especially terrible writer. The story does move pretty quickly, but there is not much that even sounds like Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s prose. Of course, Doyle never had had his best known creation go up against aliens. In spite of the absurdity of this plot, it still seems like an idea that felt overdone, or at least not that well considered. Sorry, but there is not much I found terribly enjoyable or memorable about this particular indulgence of Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson stepping outside of their usual Victorian surroundings.

My next read will carry a bit more acclaim as I meet The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho.

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