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Writing, Reading, and Rural Life With a Border Collie

Holmes & Watson at Top of Their Game in ‘Murder in Keswick’


Murder in Keswick

A Sherlock Homes Mystery

By William Todd

SpellBound Books, 2022

Genre: Fiction/Mystery/Suspense

Via: Book Blog Tour

Note: We received a complimentary digital copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

“The game is afoot.” It’s the catch phrase for literature’s most famous detective. And there are plenty of twists, turns and “gaming” going on in William Todd’s delightful page-turner, Murder in Keswick.

Told in the third person by Dr. Watson, the story opens aboard a train bound for Keswick, England in 1898. Disembarking, the duo soon learns that a well-respected resident of the area has turned up dead. And while Watson is looking forward to a relaxing holiday in the bucolic countryside, Holmes quips that nothing is more relaxing than solving a murder, even if he’s informed that “this sort of thing never happens here.”

A Web

We soon plunge into a tangled web of deception, hate, love, and revenge. We’re also neck-deep in Sherlock Holmes’s “unique abilities in deduction and logic.” Incidentally, you’d be surprised at what can be gleaned “from the most mundane information.”

Buoyed by crisp narration and a subtle touch of levity, the action skims along briskly from one scene, interview and investigation to the next. Peppered with delicious descriptions and vivacious prose, this absorbing tale of intrigue and suspense also features robust settings and lively characters. The latter includes Morwenna McGlinn the waitress, Gypsy Jimmy Biggins, Constable Charlie Wickham, and “Mr. Darcy” of Muirhouse. (Astute Jane Austen fans, take note!)

Don’t just see. Observe.


Tackling a new twist on a literary luminary like Sherlock Holmes takes some spine. And no small amount of talent. Todd pulls off both masterfully.

You can almost feel the wind cutting through the Lake District and hear thunder booming over the water. Or see the flickering light of a candle illuminating the forest’s “sepulchral darkness.” (I about jumped out of my skin when someone suddenly clamps a leather-gloved hand over Watson’s mouth from behind.)

There’s also a big surprise and then… Oh, wait. You’ll have to read the book yourself for the rest.

“Elementary, my dear Watson.”

Tip: The dog, Bobby. Pay attention to the dog. Kimber already knew that.

Charming and Nimble

So then. If you’re looking for a charming and nimble mystery that’s just plain fun, join Watson and Holmes as they doggedly and expertly deduce, observe, reason, and untangle a web of deceit in this clever and captivating whodunnit.


Our Rating. 4.0


About the Author

William Todd, author of ‘Murder in Keswick.’

William Todd has been writing for over 20 years, primarily gothic horror stories in the style of Lovecraft, Poe, and Shelley. Loving all things Victorian, he was inspired to read (and later to write) by Arthur Conan Doyle.

The first book he ever read cover to cover was Hound of the Baskervilles, which also fed his appetite for horror. William Todd has written two short story compilations of gothic horror, Dead of Night and Beyond the Gossamer Veil and one sci-fi/horror hybrid genre Something Wicked This Way Comes.

He has also written multiple Sherlock Holmes pastiches, Murder in Keswick, A Reflection of Evil, Mystery of the Broken Window, and Elementary—a short story compilation. Two of his short stories were part of MX Publishing’s New Sherlock Holmes Stories with proceeds going to a charity for special needs children housed in Undershaw, the very home Conan Doyle penned Hound of the Baskervilles.

Writing for the books was a special privilege because his daughter, Alina, has Down Syndrome. In 2022, he just finished his first YA/historical novel The Fall of the Hermit King, which is under review for publication, and in the meantime has started yet another Sherlock Holmes compilation.

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Buy Links

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Amazon US –













4 thoughts on “Holmes & Watson at Top of Their Game in ‘Murder in Keswick’

  1. Thank you so much for kicking off the tour today and what a fab review x

  2. What a terrific review. The fact that you almost jumped out of your skin during part of this says so much.

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