I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.A Study in Sable (Elemental Masters #12) by Mercedes Lackey
Series: Elemental Masters #12
Published by DAW on June 7th, 2016
Number of Pages: 320
Genres: Fairy Tale, Fantasy, Historical
Purchase: At Amazon
Psychic Nan Killian and Medium Sarah Lyon-White—along with their clever birds, the raven Neville and the parrot Grey—have been agents of Lord Alderscroft, the Elemental Fire Master known as the Wizard of London, since leaving school. Now, Lord Alderscroft assigns them another commission: to work with the famous man living at 221 Baker Street—but not the one in flat B. They are to assist the man living in flat C. Dr. John Watson and his wife Mary, themselves Elemental Masters of Water and Air, take the occult cases John’s more famous friend disdains, and they will need every skill the girls and their birds can muster!
Nan and Sarah’s first task: to confront and eliminate the mysterious and deadly entity that nearly killed them as children: the infamous Haunt of Number 10 Berkeley Square. But the next task divides the girls for the first time since they were children. A German opera star begs Sarah for help, seeking a Medium’s aid against not just a single spirit, but a multitude. As Sarah becomes more deeply entwined with the Prima Donna, Nan continues to assist John and Mary Watson alone, only to discover that Sarah’s case is far more sinister than it seems. It threatens to destroy not only a lifelong friendship, but much, much more.
I loved all the side mysteries as well as the main one. There were so many plot twists! But it never got into the ‘too many’ category, and it wasn’t confusing.
It was quite funny how Watson had to twist magical explanations so that they sounded scientific instead, to make Sherlock Holmes believe or go along with them. Holmes was adamant that magic wasn’t real, and he was often loudly derisive about it. He did believe in Nan’s ability to read minds though, mostly because she proved it in such a way that he couldn’t think of any other explanation for how she did it.
I loved that we got to see Puck, and that while Holmes did appear a number of times in the book, he wasn’t a central character. It was fun getting to know all the side characters, and I hope we get to meet up with the Priest of Tyr again.
The birds are as always, some of my favorite characters. They have so much personality, without ever going so far as to be unbelievable as birds.
I had an idea about what was going on with the bone and hair bow, but no idea at all about how the opera singer was so popular. I also wasn’t expecting the twist with her at the end, but totally loved it! If you haven’t read any books in this series yet, you are missing out. And if you have read others in this series, you need to pick this one up as well.