The Cult of the White Worm!
The Further Adventures of Sherlock Holmes: The White Worm by Sam Siciliano
Siciliano is back with more blending of various authors!
Siciliano’s chosen author for this volume is Bram Stoker. It follows very loosely the text of Stoker’s “The Lair of the White Worm.”
Gentle giant Adam Seton hires Holmes to go to Whitby to investigate a mystery. (Readers may or may not know that Stoker was often referred to as a gentle giant!) Much like “The Hound of the Baskervilles,” the story starts with a legend passed down through generations of his girlfriend’s family. It speaks of a battle between the legendary White Worm and a knight of old, Sir Michael Marsh. Having defeated the White Worm, Marsh’s family becomes cursed. Every female in Marsh’s line was to become the host of the White Worm!
Diana Marsh lives in her home at Diana’s Woods with a very eccentric aunt. The aunt’s former husband committed suicide in the presence of his wife and his doctor. A lecherous old man lives in a nearby tower and has his eye on Diana. Another nearby estate is the home of Sir Nathaniel de Salis, who tells of druids or pagans who worship at a blowhole in the rocks. He states that they sacrifice to a large white worm…
As usual with Siciliano, the story is not recounted by Watson. In fact, Holmes is openly dismissive of Watson’s value as a companion. The tale is told by Holmes’ cousin Doctor Henry Vernier, who accompanies Holmes on “serious adventures.” Vernier’s wife, Doctor Michelle Doudet Vernier always plays a role in these continuing stories.
If you are willing to deal with Watson being sidelined, (at one point when the client asks if this is Doctor Watson both Vernier and Holmes answer “No!” simultaneously) you might find the stories enjoyable.
I will give kudos for the reveal of the “White Worm.” It was something that would never have occurred to me! And when you think about it, it is perfectly logical…
I give the book four stars.
Quoth the Raven…