|Trade paperback cover (2010)|
|UK paperback cover (2010)|
ISBN (UK Paperback) 9780749008536
Read Laurie’s thoughts on writing Locked Rooms on her blog.
Buy It Here
Signed or not, here’s where you can buy the book.
What they say
“A humdinger…”–Locked Rooms has received stars from all four of the pre-publication journals.
“…The richly imagined eighth novel in this acclaimed series… Since she began her journey back to her hometown—ostensibly to deal with her father’s estate—Russell has been tormented by strange dreams, one of which involves the ?locked rooms? of the title, and the sight of her San Francisco childhood home opens a flood of memories and emotions, most of which she’s loathe to allow into her über-rational mind. When someone takes a shot at her, Holmes enlists the help of Pinkerton agent Dashiell Hammett and Russell tries to unlock her past, in particular the ‘accident’ that killed her family and left her an orphan in 1914. King’s re-creation of San Francisco, especially the backstory during the devastating 1906 earthquake, is superb, and it’s a pleasure to see the unusually competent Russell struggling with her own psyche… intelligent, evocative and graceful.”
“King makes full use of her considerable skills at probing the dark of the human psyche in this utterly mesmerizing tale of Mary Russell’s trip back to the San Francisco of her parents with her husband, Sherlock Holmes… In alternating sections, told in first person for Mary and third for Holmes, the unraveling of long-buried and terrifying memories also unwinds a skein of wonderful historical texture: the place of Chinese immigrants and the use of feng shui; the nightlife of a city during the age of jazz, Prohibition, and flappers; and the presence of Dash Hammett, who plays a fascinating role as a very different sort of Irregular. A highlight in an altogether outstanding series.”
“Mary Russell confronts her past abetted by Sherlock Holmes and Dash Hammett.
Three dreams keep repeating. First, books fly, objects smash and the sky burns. Next, a faceless man enters a soft white room and says, “Don’t be afraid, little girl.” Finally, a house contains a secret locked room to which Mary holds the key. The dreams confuse mary, but her husband Holmes believes they’re rooted in repressed memories of her San Francisco childhood during the great quake and fire. She insists she wasn’t even there at the time….
A humdinger of a plot that deepens with each retelling of the dreams, plus pulsating descriptions of San Francisco’s tent cities, looters and flattened Chinatown in the quake’s aftermath.”
“…With his normally capable wife distracted by her emotions, it is up to Holmes to recruit new Irregulars and uncover the truth behind the “locked rooms” that Russell dreams about. This latest title in King’s Russell/Holmes series is steeped in the period feel of 1920s San Francisco. Two points of view (first person from Russell and third person from Holmes) add to the richness of the prose and the complexity of the storyline. Worthy of the highest recommendation and suitable for all public libraries.”
No one, not even Conan Doyle, has ever done a better Holmes than King does…
Since the audacious and brilliant “The Beekeeper’s Apprentice,” eight books ago, the series can now be seen to have been moving in a long and intricate arc toward just this crisis. That’s quite an accomplishment. What’s next?
–San Jose Mercury News
This finely wrought, cleverly plotted work proves again that King is one of the finest crime novelists now writing.
–Globe and Mail
This energetic novel succeeds both in advancing the relationship of its central characters and in capturing the atmosphere of the era. The teaming of Holmes with a San Francisco investigator by the name of Dashiell Hammett is icing on the cake.
–San Francisco Chronicle
“Locked Rooms” brims with lively 1920s color and verve, some of it in the warrens of San Francisco’s Chinatown. It also gives an excellent supporting role to a gent named Dashiell Hammett, part-time detective and aspiring writer. And there are some wry jokes: When Holmes cries out that “the game is afoot,” an observer incredulously asks Russell if he really says stuff like that. Yes, she replies, but only to annoy her.
For a timeline and various links, go to Mary Russell’s World
For Dashiell Hammett’s history and writing, look to PBS
Download Laurie’s San Francisco Old and New
A video of San Francisco taken shortly before the 1906 earthquake:
And another of Market Street just after the quake and today:
Click pictures for a larger image.