Weekly Writers’ Ramble: Book Review of “A Case of Spontaneous Combustion”


I sort of dropped the ball with my Weekly Writers’ Ramble, what with the craziness of the last few months. I shall now make all efforts to get the ball bouncing again.

After I finished my dissertation draft, and before I discovered the file was corrupted and panicked (If I disappear again, this is why.), I picked up Stephanie Osborn’s newest release in the Displaced Detective series, “A Case of Spontaneous Combustion”. If you like, you can meander over to Amazon for the blurb. I’ll wait.

Back? Good.

This is book five in the series, and personally I found it likely her best so far. Whereas the first few had some slow pacing in sections, this book kept the story moving  right along. It is well written, well edited, and the author makes excellent use of language and dialect with her characters.

In Book 5, for once, all of existence is not at stake. We can’t always go about blowing up the multiverse, you know. Still, terrorists are at work, and it is up to Sherlock, MI-5, and eventually Skye to ferret them out.

The story opens with Skye taking a simple solo case, which inadvertently triggers a marital spat. The ensuing events take their toll on both husband and wife, as each of them begins to doubt the other. It’s a case of she said A, he heard B and he said X and she heard Y sort of thing.

With Sherlock working without Skye, readers get to see him take on a case in much the same fashion as when he reined on 221B Baker Street.

Some readers might wonder where all the physics went. After all, isn’t this science fiction? You bet. Hang in there. After all, Skye can’t solve a problem she doesn’t even know about. Once she joins Sherlock on the case and has time to breathe, the physics commences.

The series demonstrates growth in both characters and at the end we get the sense that it will be far harder to rattle their faith in each other after this. It’s a fun read with familiar characters and the series simply keeps getting better. If you like genre mash-ups, give this a try!

displaced detetive

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