Review: A Study in Charlotte (Charlotte Holmes #1) by Brittany Cavallaro10:00
Series: Charlotte Holmes #1
Author: Brittany Cavallaro
Published March 1st 2016 by Katherine Tegen Books
The last thing Jamie Watson wants is a rugby scholarship to Sherringford, a Connecticut prep school just an hour away from his estranged father. But that’s not the only complication: Sherringford is also home to Charlotte Holmes, the famous detective’s great-great-great-granddaughter, who has inherited not only Sherlock’s genius but also his volatile temperament. From everything Jamie has heard about Charlotte, it seems safer to admire her from afar.
From the moment they meet, there’s a tense energy between them, and they seem more destined to be rivals than anything else. But when a Sherringford student dies under suspicious circumstances, ripped straight from the most terrifying of the Sherlock Holmes stories, Jamie can no longer afford to keep his distance. Jamie and Charlotte are being framed for murder, and only Charlotte can clear their names. But danger is mounting and nowhere is safe—and the only people they can trust are each other.
This year I've started reading a lot more Sherlock inspired YA books, and when I found out about this debut, I preordered it ASAP.
In A Study in Charlotte, the descendants of the famous Sherlock Holmes and Dr Watson are both students at the prestigious Sherringford school in Connecticut. Jamie Watson has been sent there on scholarship, and he knows that Charlotte Holmes is also a student. He wants to meet her, but also knows about her reputation for being aloof and unpredictable - just like her famous ancestor. When they first meet, it's safe to say they both didn't make a good first impression. However, once a fellow student, whom they've both had run ins with, turns up dead at the school, they're both seen as prime suspects. They need to work together to clear their names, and to save themselves when the real killer turns on them.
A Study in Charlotte was simply wonderful! I hated been reading much recently, due to a hectic school life, so when I came home for Easter, I decided to give this a try, and read it all in less than a day - it was that good. The plot line kept me on the edge of my seat the entire way through, there was never a dull moment. Honestly, it had a real feel of an authentic Conan Doyle story, and I was in awe with how researched and well thought out everything was. The dramatic climax seemed to come out of nowhere, but afterwards, I realised there had been some little clues and hints throughout the book, all foreshadowing the end.
The characters were fantastic, and so unique. I adored Charlotte - she was quirky, and definitely strange, but it felt real on her. I could see how she was related to Sherlock, and when you met other members of her family, they all had little characteristics that gave a nod back to the famous detective. Jamie, on the other hand, was a little more reserved, but considering the book was from his PoV (something I really enjoyed), we felt everything he did. To be the main suspect in a murder, and then realising that the actual murderer may be after you, would mess with anyone's head and emotions, so I felt that he, and Charlotte, dealt with the situation very maturely, but they were still teenagers, and we got to see them as such.
There's a hint of romance in the book, and I'm hoping that it gets expanded upon in book two. It seemed very much one sided for the majority of the book, but little things, here and there, suggest that its very much a mutual attraction, which gave me a lot of shippy feels.
Basically, if you enjoy Sherlock in any shape or form, try this book. A Study in Charlotte is a fantastic debut from Cavallaro, and I can't wait to read more from her.