First of all, what a great bloody cover this is! I have been thinking about cobbling together a short list of my top 5 books so far in 2016. I’m glad now that I waited until I finished this superb read from Paul Kane.
I have never read any of the Sherlock Holmes books by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle but now I really want to. A mash-up of Holmes and Clive Barker’s Hellraiser could’ve been a bit of a disaster but Kane does a fantastic job of blending the two worlds together in a book that is excellent from the very first page. As a big fan of the ‘Hellraiser’ franchise I was excited to take another trip back into Hell. The real treat with this book turned out to be the two lead characters in Holmes and Watson. Holmes is portrayed brilliantly as the thorough detective, proficient with his observations, sometimes abrupt but always engaging. His often stern tone with Watson and other characters took a bit of warming to but there is no denying that Holmes is a fascinating and deeply complex man. The book is written as a recollection of events by Holmes’ trusty sidekick Watson-a very different but equally engaging and likeable chap, handy with his fists and certainly not lacking in courage. The story follows our two protagonists as they investigate a series of disappearances that will eventually lead them into battle against a horde of Cenobites deep within the bowels of Hell itself. Whilst the first half of the book is very much a detective story, it is the second half where things really begin to ramp up. Kane puts his characters through a series of incredible scenes, bursting with graphic imagery, monsters and dripping with blood as Holmes and Watson battle an old nemesis to the death!
‘Sherlock Holmes and the Servants of Hell’ is an absolute triumph. I thoroughly enjoyed the build up towards Holmes’ confrontation his nemesis. The characters were superb, lifelike and totally engaging. The chemistry between the two was fantastic and the descriptions of Hell were immense. The pacing is excellent with Kane building up the tension to an epic confrontation. I can only hope that this book might lead to others exploring the mashing up of two different worlds. It truly is wonderful to read.
One of my favourite books of 2016, for sure. Epic storytelling from a great horror writer.
You can pick up a copy of this outstanding book from here.