Bored: A Study in Charlotte by Brittany Cavallaro

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.

A Study in Charlotte is the first in a trilogy.

Source: GoodReads

This isn’t the first Sherlock Holmes YA retelling that I’ve read, but it is the first one where Sherlock is a female.   I’ve read one, quite an excellent one where Watson is a girl.  But this is the first Girl! Sherlock! I’ve read.   And I have to tell you I was excited about this twist, but I ended up so bored it’s not even funny.

I DNF’d this book because I just could not engage in it.

That should tell you something since I usually eat up Sherlock retelling.

I think part of my biggest problem with A Study of Charlotte was that I couldn’t connect with any of the characters.  All of them were as dull as dishwasher soap to me.

Sad, but true.

You know a part of me wondered if the book would’ve been better had it been narrated by Charlotte rather than Jaime, but I don’t think that’s where the problem resides.   The original Holmes stories were narrated by Watson, and obviously they were fine.  And Ellie Marney’s Holmes retelling is written in a Watson’s character’s POV as well and that was fine as well. Besides that, I really don’t think the Sherlock character in this version wasn’t characterized well either so I don’t think it would’ve helped.

There is way too much telling rather than showing in this book which drove me mad.  Especially since it’s suppose to be a mystery.  With mysteries, I always feel there should be some sort of interactive element to the book and here I didn’t feel it, since there were not really any clues shown to me where I could make my own inferences about the culprit.

The crime itself was just entirely random and not gone over with really much detail.  So, there’s not much inferences that can be made over it.  God, the characters in the book were so weak there weren’t any decent suspects to mull over.

The best thing this book had going for it was it’s references to the original Sherlock Holmes lore.   Yeah, little treasure trove nods to the Conan Doyle books and stories were the best part of this one.

Sad.

So, so, sad.

As previously stated, characterization is just awful.  A lot of this is because of the telling, but it is also in part due to pacing and ridiculously convenient coincidences that just made my eyes roll.  Like the circumstances surrounding Jamie’s scholarship.

I won’t go into details but I was like oO when I read it.

Seriously, stink eye worthy and oh so convenient.

A Study in Charlotte wasn’t exactly the worst thing I read, but I have read better.  Gender bender Sherlock Holmes had been done several times in the past.  If you want a good one read the Every trilogy by Ellie Marney.  This one is blah at best.

Overall Rating: A DNF.

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