The Adventures of the Deadly Dimensions (Sherlock
Holmes vs Cthulhu #1) by Lois H. Gresh fulfilled the category “Book Who’s Title Caught my
Attention” for the PopSugar 2020 Reading Challenge.
I work in a library. At least one hour of every
shift, I check in returns. The bright green cover with all the gold filigree
passed through my scanner, and I was done. Not only did I outright buy the book
rather than just borrow it, but I also bought the entire series from Amazon.
Also, there are some books by James Lovegrove with eerily similar titles and
covers. I probably read the wrong novel. Oops.
It might have been a premature purchase. While I
liked the premise of The Deadly Dimensions and though the author recreated
Watson’s voice well,
the book did not move me.
In this 500-page novel, Sherlock Holmes, and Dr.
Watson stumble on a bizarre murder in a rough part of London. It seems a
machine is murdering humans and no one can turn the thing off. At this point in
the Holmesian universe, Watson has married and had a child. They play a
significant part in the story. Holmes continues to pull his friend into
adventures, while Watson wants to start a normal life with his wife and child.
Through the investigation into the murders at the hands of the tram machine,
the two men are pulled into other cases involving unexplained things. One
case involved furniture of bizarre dimension and impossible design, much like
the tram machine.
I thought the story would be quick when we as readers
realize our villain is in the first few chapters. We, in the know, see Fitzgerald’s
obsession with the Old Ones (Cthulhu) immediately. But the novel takes a 400-page
journey away from this simple explanation and goes down tunnels, to the sea, to
France and back again. I’m
not sure why it all happened, and I’m not sure the whole point of it all.
Because Holmes with his scientific, cynical mind would never admit to creatures
like Cthulhu or the Old Ones. That’s why I couldn’t wait to read this title.
Sigh, nothing really happened. There was much running
around, some interesting passages in minor characters’ points of view, more running around. In the end, Holmes
did not solve the case, Watson did not resolve with his estranged wife, and
neither of them really believed in Cthulhu.
I know the legends of the Old Ones involved secret
societies and bloody sacrifices. We had those, but not as I expected and without
a good spin on the idea. (Here I’ll
mention I’ve read Lovecraft books, Lovecraft Country, and The Ballad
of Black Tom to give me some street cred about the monster lore. That’s not
a drop in the barrel of what’s out there, but I have read some Cthulhu.)
I admit I read the paperback. Paper takes me so much
longer to read and it is a huge book. But those two things can excuse how badly the book bored me. I
liked it, but in a “this is fine to read for a few minutes” way. Not much in
the tale compelled me to stick with it for hours. Perhaps Book Two of the
series will interest me more. Or maybe I’ll read Lovegrove’s story and see how
it compares. Either way, I’m good on giant, lurking monsters that have little
use for humanity. Maybe it’s time for some romance with paranormal elements—a few
vampires or shifter stories? Sounds great to me.
I give The
Adventures of the Deadly Dimensions (Sherlock Holmes vs Cthulhu #1) by Lois
H. Gresh Three Tentacles.