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The Language of Bees: A novel of suspense…
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The Language of Bees: A novel of suspense featuring Mary Russell and… (edition 2010)

by Laurie R. King

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1,043None8,130 (3.97)102
Member:KelliSFlor
Title:The Language of Bees: A novel of suspense featuring Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes (A Mary Russell Novel)
Authors:Laurie R. King
Info:Bantam (2010), Edition: Reprint, Paperback, 464 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:****
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The Language of Bees by Laurie R. King

1920s (13) 2009 (15) 2010 (7) American (6) bees (14) British (7) crime (22) detective (7) ebook (10) England (39) fiction (97) historical (18) historical fiction (35) historical mystery (23) Holmes (9) Kindle (8) Laurie R. King (7) library (7) Mary Russell (72) mysteries (6) mystery (228) novel (7) read (12) read in 2009 (11) read in 2010 (7) religion (8) series (26) Sherlock Holmes (120) to-read (22) unread (7)

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» See also 102 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 55 (next | show all)
It's been awhile since I've read one of the Russel & Holmes mysteries. It was good to get back to the series. In this outing, we find that Sherlock has a son and he and his family are in trouble. There is also an "interlude" where Mary is alone at home and decides to investigate what happened to one of the bee hives. I found this part strangely enjoyable. I highly recommend this series. ( )
  hoosgracie | Mar 11, 2014 |
This was a book that I'd seen talked about on threads here on LT, so when I happened across an audio copy in the local library, I thought I'd give it a try. My first thoughts having just finished were that it was interesting to see 'investigating' from a female perspective in the era and aura of Sherlock Holmes. Mary Russell was interesting, I liked her pluck and the fact that she didn't sit back and wait for someone else to tell her what to do. I loved the airplane section and her thoughts and reactions before going on her journey. I was disappointed to discover that I need to read on to find out how this story ends. So I guess I need to hope the library has the next one too. ( )
  Peace2 | Mar 6, 2014 |
It's a little annoying that this is a two-parter, but at least the immediate problem came to a conclusion. I still love the 'verse and everyone in it. ♥ ( )
  sageness | Feb 7, 2014 |
I enjoy the Mary Russell series but found this one a bit underwhelming. The murderer was obvious and the plot was the same as A letter of Mary.
But it whiled away a few lazy hours pleasantly. ( )
  infjsarah | Jan 1, 2014 |
For those who don't know, the Mary Russell series are books of basically Sherlock Holmes fan fiction. Set in the early 20th Century, King gives Holmes a female romantic and professional partner, Mary Russell, a much younger--and feminist partner. And yes, incongruous and unlikely as that might sound, they work. A lot of the fun is the depiction of Holmes--I'm a fan of the original Conan Doyle stories. Some is just the character of Mary, a strong woman protagonist and vivid character in her own right. And a lot is just the picture it paints of the historical period. We get a glimpse of the world right after the Great War, and each book tends to treat a different slice of it: Palestine, India during the British Raj, a great English estate, Prohibition Era San Francisco. That helps keep the series fresh, and in the last book--and this one--the events of the books hit closer to home. They're not just mysteries for our couple to solve. The last book, Locked Rooms, involved Mary dealing with her troubled past. In this one, pages in, Sherlock Holmes estranged son by Irene Adler shows up on their doorstep.

And that's not all. I don't think any of the other books in the series are darker than this one. This time we get a glimpse of the Bohemian set, avant-garde artists, the world of the occult, even aviation. Reading this I realize that I love these I think even more as historical fiction than mysteries. I love how the books show our modern world taking shape. King so obviously has so much fun with that, mixing fictional and historical characters: Lord Peter Wimsey, Kipling's Kimball O'Hara, Dashiell Hammett, and in this book Aleister Crowley gets some mention. Not that I have any complaints about the mystery aspects. Although King is no Christie or Tey with mind-boggling twists, her plots are solid and with Sherlock Holmes and Mary Russell on hand, the one thing these books never do is insult your intelligence with too-stupid-to live characters. One thing I do think I should warn potential readers about. This book is no standalone. My first Mary Russell book was the third book, A Letter of Mary, and I had no problem immersing myself in it. Most of the books can be read on their own. This one, however, ends, if not exactly on a cliffhanger, than certainly with a very, very loose end and a "to be continued." So I'd have the next book, The God of the Hive, close by for after you finish this one. ( )
  LisaMaria_C | Dec 27, 2013 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
King, Laurie R.primary authorall editionsconfirmed
sterlin, jennyNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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First Birth (1): The boy came into being on a night of celestial alignment, when a comet travelled the firmament and the sky threw forth a million shooting stars to herald his arrival. Testimony, I:1
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For Lynn and Robert on whose backs this book was written
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As homecomings go, it was not auspicious.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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For Mary Russell and her husband, Sherlock Holmes, returning to the Sussex coast after seven months abroad was especially sweet. There was even a mystery to solve, the unexplained disappearance of an entire colony of bees from one of Holmes's beloved hives. But the anticipated sweetness of their homecoming is quickly tempered by a galling memory from her husband's past. Mary had met Damian Adler only once before, when the promising surrealist painter had been charged with, and exonerated from murder. Now the talented and troubled young man was enlisting their help again, this time in a desperate search for his missing wife and child.… (more)

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