Death Cloud - Andy Lane
Sherlock Holmes wasn’t always the great detective we know him as today. Once, he was a young teenage boy just learning the ways of the world. DEATH CLOUD is the first in a series of Young Sherlock Holmes stories.

On a holiday from school, Sherlock is devastated to find out he is going to have to stay with an aunt and uncle he has never met. His father has been called to war, his older brother is too busy in London, and his mother isn’t well. Sherlock doesn’t hold out much hope for the holiday break.

In addition to being stuck in a house full of strangers, he finds out that his uncle has arranged for a tutor to see him every day. He is upset about being expected to work during his vacation until he meets Amyus Crowe. Crowe is an unusual man. He is from America, doesn’t teach like any teacher Sherlock has ever met, and has a pretty daughter named Virginia. It turns out Sherlock doesn’t mind having a tutor after all.

When two men turn up dead in the small town where he is staying, whispers of the plague start spreading and cause people to panic. Sherlock has a feeling it isn’t the plague, but doesn’t know how to figure out what is really happening. With the help of Crowe, a homeless boy named Matty, and the brave American girl, Virginia, Sherlock works his way through his first case.

DEATH CLOUD has a nice mixture of mystery, suspense, and humor. There were several times I chuckled out loud. His sidekick Matty was a hoot.

I listened to DEATH CLOUD on audio book and it was great. First of all, the English accent makes it fun to listen to, but that isn’t all. The narrator does a wonderful job changing his voice for the different characters. His “Virginia” isn’t even that bad. You can definitely tell it is supposed to be a girl talking. He had to really work when he did Mr. Crow’s voice since he is from Texas.

REBEL FIRE is the second book in this series. I’d like to read it, but have others begging to be picked up first. I hope I get to it eventually.