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The Return of the Pharaoh

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It’s 1911 and the game is afoot! Dr. John H. Watson has married once again and is living apart from Sherlock Holmes. For reasons of his wife’s health, Dr. Watson finds himself in Egypt during the heyday of Egyptology and the search for an unopened pharoah’s tomb. Little does he know it but he will soon find his old friend Holmes hot on the trail of a missing English duke. Murder, mayhem, and a natural disaster follow, of course.

When I saw that Nicholas Meyer had penned a new Sherlock Holmes novel, I jumped on it. Many years ago, I read “The Seven Per Cent Solution” and “The West End Horror;” I still have the paperbacks and will re-read them this year I think. That was followed by “Black Orchid,” a novel which although had nothing to do with Sherlock Holmes, transported me to another time and place. I have been a fan for years.

I have also been a huge fan of Sherlock Holmes since before I was 10 years old. By my 10th birthday, I had read all of the original canon and had gleefully discovered the 1940’s wartime movies. Ever loyal to Basil Rathbone as being “my” Sherlock Holmes, I later branched out to Christopher Lee and Jeremy Brett as Holmes. I read whatever I could analyzing Holmes and his methods as well. And finally, when the series “Sherlock” arrived with Benedict Cumberbatch, I was at first skeptical, and then laughed with delight during the first episode.

Having been a voracious consumer of everything Sherlock for over 45 years, I can say with utter confidence that this is a novel right at the heart of everything Holmes and Watson. There is action and adventure…and then there is painful frustration as the trail goes cold and Holmes is fidgeting around. There is an engaging plot line with a historically well-known person. And there is detail…oh so much detail about the exotic surroundings of turn-of-the-20th-Century Egypt under Ottoman rule. Are there spies? There are certainly greedy foreigners trying to find and carry-away golden treasures while the Turks allow it, with angry locals perhaps more than looking on.

I absolutely and wholeheartedly recommend this book for a fast-paced, page-turning adventure read.

With great thanks to author Nicholas Meyer, St. Martin’s Press, and NetGalley for allowing me the opportunity to read this new offering. It was just what I needed!

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Sherlock Holmes is back! As is his sidekick Dr. Watson, who leads us through this Egyptian mystery. Watson travels with his wife to Egypt to recover from an illness at a health resort. While there, he meets Holmes, rather coincidently, and proceeds to follow him in his investigations as Mrs. Holmes undergoes her treatments in quarantine (shades of our current situation). Well done; it was great to be back in the company of these familiar figures. Recommended.

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Delightful story! I couldn’t put it down and read it in two days. I loved the interplay between Holmes and Watson. Having been to Egypt and seen the Sphinx and the Great Pyramids, I greatly enjoyed the setting for the story. A wonderful read.

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Juliet Watson has a cough which is all too familiar to her husband, Dr. John Watson. Encouraged by her physician to take her to a warmer climate, Watson picks Egypt, where Juliet is enrolled in a severe course of treatments at a noted clinic, leaving Watson on his own much of the time. It's then he runs into Colonel Arbuthnot—in reality, an undercover Sherlock Holmes, trying to discover the whereabouts of an English duke who's become enamored of Egyptology, but has vanished, leading to inquiries from his wife and the Home Office. As part of his investigation Holmes has discovered several other Egyptologists have died, or gone missing, as well. The story follows Holmes' and Watson's search, from a hotel with a disappearing room to finally end in a railway trip that nearly turns deadly, and then, with the help of Howard Carter (several years before he became famous for discovering "King Tut"), tracking down a tomb which has apparently remained untouched and is full of gold and other riches.

The pros of this book: Meyer has his Victorian vocabulary pretty much down pat, so it sounds like something Arthur Conan Doyle might have written. His Holmes/Watson badinage is fair; it doesn't sound quite as good as in his previous works. Meyer also brings Edwardian-era Egypt to life, from the heat to the smells and sounds of the streets and the marketplaces to the vintage treatments Juliet has in the sanatorium to the realities of the environment to the sensations of crawling inside tombs thousands of years old. The cons: to me it just kind of ambles along, with no suspense until the second half, a little like a Rick Steves' travelogue. So I enjoyed it, but there were certainly bits where it dragged in spots, especially in the first half of the novel.

(Also wondered if Meyer's reference to the wallpaper at the duke's hotel was a tip of the hat to Charlotte Perkins Gilman...)

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Wow! This book is incredible! It is gripping, mysterious, full of twists and turns, quick-paced, intriguing, and so much more! Whenever I picked up "The Return of the Pharaoh", I was whisked back in time, and went on quite the adventure with this story.

This is the first book I have read by Nicholas Meyer, and it certainly will not be my last, as his writing style is visceral, brilliant, and engaging. His storytelling is spectacular, and each element in his novel, from the characters, various locations, mysteries, and pieces of the different puzzles spring to life right off of the page. As the reader, I felt like I was right there with the characters, and often forgot I was reading on the couch! I can only imagine the amount of research Mr. Meyer must have done for this book, as he seamlessly weaves history and fiction. Both the historical figures he brings to life as well as the fictional characters in this book, feel so very real, and each moves the plot forward in one way or another.

Dr. Watson and Sherlock Holmes are reunited in Egypt. The two are searching for a missing Egyptologist, and this search leads them through much of the action of the book. Along the way, they meet Howard Carter (historically, one of the people who found Tutankhamun's tomb), find spies, discover murder, encounter a sandstorm, and much, much more. Will they be able to find out what is really going on? Are some things different than how they truly seem? You will just have to read to find out.

If you enjoy historical mysteries, I highly recommend this book! It kept me turning the pages into the early hours of the morning to see what would happen next, and I look forward to reading what Mr. Meyer writes next.

Thank you so much to Minotaur Books and NetGalley for the ARC of this book, and to Minotaur Books for the physical ARC as well, it is great! All opinions expressed in this review are my own.

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This was a nice addition to the Sherlock Holmes saga. The book revolves around Dr Watson and his wife until he runs into Holmes disguised as someone else. Their adventure takes them into Egypt through an intense sandstorm.
While I enjoyed the story but at times I found myself getting distracted. I think it was a bit wordy.
Thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for the early copy

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Sherlockians will rejoice to know that the grand master of Sherlock Holmes spinoffs has written a delightful new “reminiscence” by John H. Watson, M.D. in The Return of the Pharaoh, which appears this fall. I have a deep personal affection for Nicholas Meyer's Watson novels: I still remember how much I loved Meyer’s The Seven-Per-Cent Solution in 1974, and also how intrigued I was by my introduction to the idea that a contemporary author could extend an earlier author’s work. Meyer is in fine form with his fourth Holmes novel, which reunites Holmes and Watson in Egypt, where an aristocratic Egyptologist has disappeared. The world of famous archeologist Howard Carter and his peers, as well as that of Holmes and Watson, are done full justice in Meyer’s engaging novel.

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Who doesn't love a good Sherlock Holmes mystery, with all its twists and turns, and surprises? In this novel we find Dr. Watson who is in Egypt with his wife at a sanitarium where she is recovering from tuberculosis. Dr. Watson has free time on his hands and wanders into town to check out the sights. While there he sees a familiar face, which turns out to be none other than Sherlock Holmes who is there under an assumed name so as not to be known that he is there working on a case. He is there looking for a woman's lost husband who presumably has gone to Egypt in search of gold within a pharaoh's tomb. Several mysteries envelop, including a sealed off hotel room where the husband and his mistress had stayed. At the same time, Sherlock enlists the aid of museum director to determine what the husband may have been searching for. This takes them to Luxor and Cairo where they barely survive a major train wreck in a sandstorm and are then trapped within the tomb itself.
This is definitely another Homes thriller that you can't put down and have to read to the end.

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The Return of the Pharaoh is based on another previously unknown case found in a Dr. John H. Watson journal. Exciting, right?

Holmes and Watson find themselves in Cairo, for separate reasons, and team up to find a missing man.

This is a great historical mystery. I loved the vibrant setting and plethora of descriptions. The travels across Egypt were entertaining, and I felt like I was right along with them and that same sense of adventure.

The Return of the Pharaoh has a fast pace, the locations were exotic and engaging, and the writing was smooth and clever. Overall, I think mystery fans will be happy to do this Holmes and Watson nod!

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The Return of the Pharoah is another fun adventure in the satisfying series of Sherlock Holmes novels by Nicholas Meyer.

This time out Holmes is under disguise in Egypt where he is assisting the wife of a gambler and explorer who has disappeared. As chance would have it, the narrator of the tale, Dr. Watson, is in the same area where he has taken his wife for a specialized health cure, unbeknownst that his partner in solving mysteries is present.

As soon as they accidentally meet, the adventure takes off. And what an adventurous story it is, including
pyramids, hidden treasure, historical figures, and intrigue. Meyers’s Watson is my favorite if only for the use of language, which helps elevate the story above mere pulp, while retaining enough of those elements to keep one’s interest. Written during the pandemic, there are elements of the plot that remind the reader of the importance of relationship, and thus on many levels this book of “then” is very much a read for “now.”

If you enjoyed any of the fine works from Meyer’s Holmes novels, title would not disappoint you and may, as it does for me, elevate to one of your favorites.

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History comes alive in the latest Sherlock Holmes adventure from Nicholas Meyer. Yes, historical figures from the past are featured prominently in this grand adventure which takes Holmes and Watson to Egypt. If you're alert, you'll notice nods to some more modern figures too. The Return of the Pharaoh, as you'd expect, is well-written. Meyer has not lost his grasp on the Holmes and Watson characters. As with the Conan Doyle stories, they're the "flesh-and-blood" characters you know and love. There is some derring-do and some great action in this one which I think helps propel it to loftier heights than the preceding tale from Meyer. If you like historical adventures, you can't go wrong with this book. Thank you to St. Martin's Press, Minotaur Books, and NetGalley for the advanced reading copy! #TheReturnofthePharaoh #NetGalley

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Meyer’s pastiche is predictably excellent; his writing takes great pains to match Doyle’s, and his footnotes “explaining” discrepancies and references in “Watson’s journal” add a delightful touch of reality to the scene.

The setting is the real star of the show. Beautifully painted by “Watson’s” excited prose, Egypt, from the health clinic to the Khan El-Khalili to the desolate sands of the desert, is a fabulous setting to drop the famed Holmes and Watson into, and Meyer clearly appreciates that. The only downside is that Holmes and Watson are complete Egyptological novices, and so any reader familiar with late Victorian Egyptology will probably cringe as experts in the field are forced to spend time during the digging season explaining the most basic of concepts to them, which I rather feel Holmes might have acquired by skimming a book. That said, most readers will not be familiar, so this should not be a detriment, and it is fun to see a cameo from Howard Carter.

The very best part of this book, however, is the relationship between Holmes and Watson. As the two are thrown into one of their most dangerous cases yet, we get to see the deep and fervent friendship between the two men in a way that nonetheless stays perfectly true to their characters.

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“The Return of the Pharaoh: From the Reminiscences of John H. Watson, M.D.” is another lost case “discovered” by Nicholas Meyer that continues our love affair with Sherlock Holmes.

It is 1910. Dr. John Watson travels to Egypt with his second wife Juliet; she has tuberculosis and has to stay at a sanitarium in Cairo to get better, leaving Watson bored and roaming the city. So who does he happen to run into? Sherlock Holmes, of course, on the trail of a missing English Duke who considerers himself an Egyptologist. The Duke has disappeared, along with a female dancer who may be more than she seems. Watson tries to stay faithful to his wife, but the lure of Holmes proves too strong. The game is afoot!

And off we go. Holmes and Watson pursue their leads and run into Howard Carter, pre-discovery-of-Tut’s tomb, who offers key guidance (and happens to be a secret fan of the Holmes stories). We also have a waiter who is murdered before he can give Holmes his clue, a Duchess who seems to be hiding something along with her secretive brother-in-law, a mysterious Turk in charge of the police with his own agenda, a sandstorm that threatens to wipe out our heroes, hidden hotel rooms, spies with multiple identities, a nighttime visit to the Valley of the Kings, and assorted other fun adventures as Holmes gets to the bottom of the Duke’s disappearance.

This was a fun romp, but it didn’t really feel like a Sherlock Holmes story. From the first improbable coincidence that both Holmes and Watson independently were in Cairo at the same time, to the threat of being buried in a mummy’s tomb, this felt like a run of the mill adventure story, not a newly discovered case from the world’s greatest detective.

I requested and received a free advanced electronic copy from St. Martin's Press / Minotaur Books via NetGalley. Thank you!

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This book did not measure up to Nicholas Meyer's previous books in my opinion. The characterizations, the dialog, the location were just somehow "off" to me, it seemed more like a movie script than a novel with depth .

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Sherlock Holmes’ lasting popularity is a rarity among fictional characters. Most fall out of favor within years, not decades. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle died in 1930, but his stories about the English detective Sherlock Holmes have lived on. Sherlock Holmes and all his companions, as penned by Doyle, are now in the public domain and as a longtime fan of Holmes and Dr. John Watson, I’ve been looking forward to reading the inevitable adaptations. That’s why I was so keen to read The Return of the Pharaoh by Nicholas Meyer when I discovered it. If, like me, you’re a Sherlock Holmes fan, this novel won’t disappoint.

Just like the original Doyle novels and the brief adventures published in monthly issues of The Strand Magazine from 1891 to 1892, a Sherlock you are sure to recognize fascinates the reader with his keen observations, quick deductions, and encyclopedic recall of the history of crime. In The Return of the Pharaoh, set in 1910 Egypt, an English duke with an interest in Egyptology disappears and his wife engages the intrepid Holmes to find him. Dr. John Watson travels to Egypt with his wife Juliet after her doctor recommends a stay at a sanitarium in a dry climate to treat Juliet’s tuberculosis. By chance, Watson bumps into his old friend Sherlock in Cairo, who is in disguise, traveling under an assumed name. Curiosity pulls Watson into the case when Holmes reveals the duke has vanished from a luxury hotel in Cairo while on the trail of an undiscovered and unopened Pharaoh’s tomb rumored to be filled with gold. Once gain Holmes and Watson join forces to investigate a case, soon to discover that there is something going on far more sinister than a missing duke.

The mystery is straightforward, simple, and easy to enjoy. The story follows a similar formula that has worked for millions of readers these past 120-odd years, Holmes arriving at a solution by spotting a clue no one else notices, asking the right questions, or using his encyclopedic knowledge of human nature and similar cases from the past.

This book is very good and if you’re a Sherlock Holmes fan or someone who enjoys classic mysteries, I recommend adding The Return of the Pharaoh by Nicholas Meyer to your reading list. There is nothing elementary about this new Sherlock Holmes adaptation.

I received an advance copy of the book from the publisher via NetGalley.

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In Nicholas Meyer's The Return of the Pharaoh, Sherlock Holmes returns in an adventure that takes him to Egypt in search of a missing nobleman, a previously undiscovered pharaoh's tomb, and a conspiracy that threatens his very life.
And so we are off on another Holmes and Watson adventure. If I didn't know better, I would have thought Doyle wrote this book himself it is so true to style. Great suspense, lots of red herrings and an ending that was totally satisfying. I cannot wait to read the next in this series. Thank you NetGalley for the advanced readers copy for review.

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Watson's wife has consumption, and they travel to a specialized clinic in Egypt to effect her recovery. Holmes is also in Cairo, hunting a missing nobleman who disappeared from an apparently non-existent hotel room. The Return of the Pharaoh by Nicholas Meyer takes Holmes and Watson on a hunt for a missing nobleman, and a long-dead Egyptian king.

Nicholas Meyer captures Watson's voice well, although I might quibble that his Watson is a bit more progressive than Conan Doyle's. The story is interesting, and a few historical characters, such as Howard Carter, are scattered through, which will delight Egyptophiles. Naturally, there's a mummy, as well as a tomb, and the duo must navigate not only the unfamiliar terrain, but the political landscape as well. England is still in full colonial mode, and still stinging from the defeat at the hands of the Mahdi some decades before.

If Watson is more progressive, Holmes is more fallible. The missing hotel room should not have taken him long to solve, even with the distraction of a dead waiter, and the arrival of his demanding client. There's also a revelation toward the end of the book that could change their relationship.

Would Conan Doyle have sent Holmes to Egypt to search for a missing lord? Maybe, maybe not, but the story is well-written and I felt Meyer did a good job capturing the characters and crafting an intriguing mystery.

3.75 out of 5 stars.

I received an advance copy from St. Martin's Press - Minotaur Books in exchange for my honest review.

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Hikaru Mishima buys a reputed John Watson journal which features an unknown bizarre case that took place around 1910. He sends it off to the narrator who then tells the tale. Dr. Watson's second wife Juliet has tuberculosis and a doctor advises a place in Cairo for her to recover. The couple are only allowed contact for meals so Watson finds himself wandering and who should appear at the favorite hotel of British tourists but Sherlock Holmes. The detective has been hired by the Duchess of Uxbridge to find her missing husband. The characters they meet, even Howard Carter makes an appearance, are interesting and even the weather is against the intrepid duo. Anyone who likes archaeology, Egyptian history, or Homes and Watson stories will like this entertaining mystery. Thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for an advanced reader's copy in exchange for an honest review.

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Are we sure that ACD didn't write this? I don't claim to be a Baker Street expert but found the language and cadence of the story in keeping with prior ACD stories I have read.
And the plot of "The Return of the Pharaoh" flowed along so nicely that I didn't figure out who was the 'bad guy'. Bravo to Mr. Meyer!
A thoroughly enjoyable tale.

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Oh how I wanted to love this book! I picked up my copy of “The Seven-Percent Solution” way back when; purchased “The West End Horror” the day it first came out...and so on. Please don’t get me wrong. I shall always enjoy reading a novel by Nicholas Meyer and would go the opening night to see his Star Trek movies. “The Return of the Pharaoh” is a solid story and a grand adventure that takes Dr. Watson to Egypt to care for his ailing wife only to come across the undercover sleuth that happens to be, you guessed it, Sherlock Holmes. Holmes is investigating the disappearance of an English nobleman at the behest of his anxious wife and enlists Watson to help him track down the missing man whilst Watson’s wife is under special care at a sanatorium.
Holmes and Watson will run across spies, get caught in a desert sandstorm, and risk burial in ancient tombs searching for the missing man. There are murders and assorted mayhem. Having written all this I still felt that I enjoyed a good ole yarn but somehow this Holmes Pastiche did not capture the essence of the characters, nor the magic of the English environment, as did previous adventures authored by Mr. Meyer. Large sections of the story barely contained Holmes at all (or perhaps I am just whining about a story that did not contain many brilliant deductive moments by the great detective.
I do recommend this latest by Nicholas Meyer and will return often to see how others critique the book. Thanks to NetGalley for the chance to read “The Return of the Pharaoh.”

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