Sherlock and the Baker Street Curse by Sam Hearn

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Published by Scholastic, 2018.

In this entertaining new series by author/illustrator Sam Hearn, the traditional Sherlock Holmes stories have been transposed to a school setting: the Baker Street Academy. School friends Sherlock Holmes, John Watson and Martha Hudson are the super sleuths. James Moriarty is their rival, currently out of the way at home in Switzerland but still managing to taunt Sherlock and his friends from afar.

The mystery centres around spooky sightings of a ghost in the Old Wing at school. Then there are rumours of hidden treasure and a curse. The treasure is supposed to date back to the time when the school was a wealthy family’s home (Musgrave House) and not a school. However, anyone looking for the treasure risks falling foul of the curse: the ghost of a former butler who apparently still haunts the Old Library.

The story is told by John Watson, mainly through his diary. There are also comic strips, blog posts, emails, web pages, chat forums, postcards and notice boards. This mixture of text styles (and the accompanying lively illustrations) makes the book a really accessible read; it’s perfect for engaging reluctant readers as the layout is much less daunting than a traditional chapter book. It’s also a great transition book for children moving on from picture books and early readers.

The book is lots of fun and will bring the brilliance of Sherlock Holmes to a whole new audience.

Rating: 💙💙💙💙

Suitable for children aged 7+

Thank you to Scholastic for sending me this book to review.

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