Between the Thames and the Tiber: The Further Adventures of Sherlock Holmes
Ted Riccardi is writing in an established genre of Holmes knock-offs. His Holmes seems to be the Basil Rathbone type; however, Riccardi’s Holmes and Watson are not only inseparable but ever kindly and solicitous of each other’s well-being (as opposed to the 2009 Robert Downey Jr. film or the original books, where Holmes was a real pain in the neck).
Riccardi’s Watson has inherited a pot full of money and given half of it anonymously to Holmes. The two can thus live wherever they want. They intelligently choose Rome, but also travel. Riccardi’s Holmes is friendly with everyone worth knowing — Liszt, Marconi, Puccini, the pope, even Arthur Conan Doyle. This Holmes also knows everything, of course. And yet his brilliant powers of deduction and vast knowledge can’t keep people safe, even after he’s on the case.
Riccardi has the language down, and readers who love Doyle might well feel as though they’re reading newly discovered manuscripts of the real thing. Riccardi is an academic and an obviously intelligent writer. This collection of short stories was, however, unsatisfying for me – but take that with a grain of salt since I’m not a Holmes aficionado. Still, I had no thrill of “ah-hah!” or charged amazement over how Holmes figured it out. It was more a “right … right … right … that’s it?”