Friday, November 1, 2013

Investigators of the Criminal and Mysterious


Holmes and Watson.  Encyclopedia Brown and Sally Kimball. Hercules Poirot and Captain Hastings. All competent investigators of the criminal and otherwise mysterious come in pairs, and so it is in Daniel Abraham's novella The Incident of the Harrowmoor Dogs: Masters Balfour and Meriwether are special agents of the crown in Victorian England, charged with investigating all kinds of unusual happenings. In this particular episode, they are sent out to ascertain the fate of another missing agent of the crown, Daniel Winters.

Their investigation leads them to Harrowmoor, a dismal town on the edge of the sea. After nosing about a bit, our protagonists discover that Winters is being held captive underground by some fiendish hellhounds. A struggle to free him ensues, and ... 

The rest you'll just have to read yourself; it's a worthwhile use of time. I was immediately drawn into the story by the novella's captivating title. And Balfour and Meriwether are indeed a competent investigative duo: they know each other so well that reading about their exploits is like watching a well-oiled machine work. 

Abraham does a good job of telling a fantastical tale in a believable manner. On top of that, he throws in a secret riddle involving one of the world's most famous computer scientists.  One can only hope that Balfour and Meriwether's exploits continue to be chronicled in so good a fashion.

Daniel Abraham's The Incident of the Harrowmoor Dogs comes out from Subterranean Press on November 30, 2013.
 
By Nathan Ilten

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