Friday, December 5, 2014
The Holme-Dracula File!
The Holmes-Dracula File by Fred Saberhagen, part of his Dracula series, is a fascinating bit of storytelling. Two narratives are developed, one purportedly the third-person saga of a peculiar old man who has fallen victim to some mysterious miscreants who are kidnapping and experimenting on the unfortunate, and the other is the report of Dr. John Watson as he records an heretofore unrevealed exploit of the legendary Sherlock Holmes. These twin narratives parallel one another as the story progresses, one edging ahead in the time frame a bit then the other, until they reach a most satisfying conclusion.
It's difficult to talk too much about this story without spoiling it, but suffice it to say this is not quite the Dracula portrayed in the Bram Stoker work, though nominally the same. This is a more noble creature, not quite a walking corpse, but absolutely supernatural with the ability to shape shift into mists, bats, and whatnot. Dracula's famous command over the vermin of the planet comes in good use in this yarn which also offers up a version of the great untold Sherlock Holmes story about the Giant Rat of Sumatra.
There are secrets galore as Dracula and Holmes discover for themselves that their histories are not what we've all imagined all these years.
Recommended for sure. This one is a rip-snorter.