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Friday 13 September 2019

Review: Enola Holmes Mystery: Book 6 - The Case of the Disappearing Duchess

The Enola Holmes Mystery series ends with Book 6 - The Case of the Disappearing Duchess. 

I enjoyed every word I read, with the language of the Victorian era being a special bonus. The delicious sound of lost words like fulminous, ubiquitous, precipitously, fortuitous, effulgence and many more that flow through the narrative renewed my flagging interest in lost things. 

Stimulating pads of words such as his dismissive tone starched my spine, interspersed throughout each book added a spicy texture to the narrative and dialogue. I see them as gems to be collected.

Enola has taken lodgings at the Professional Women’s Club with a new identity as Sherlock has learned too much about where she had been with Mrs Tupper. 

And the staff at Dr Ragostin’s office where she was Miss Meshle, has been asked to call her Mrs Jacobson if they respected their jobs.

The arrival there of a Duke whose wife has mysteriously disappeared, believed abducted, gives Enola her next case, although her brother Sherlock has already been assigned to investigate.

The disappearance of the much-loved Duchess Blanchfleur shrouds the opulent Moorish mansion in darkness. Enola sees a painting of the Duchess – an exquisite flower of youth. This makes her determined to track down Blanchfleur’s whereabouts.

Through an incredible twist of fate, after a year in London, Enola learns news of her mum. A gypsy wearing an amulet that belonged to her mum tells Enola of the countless times they were saved from trouble and the law by her mum; how she travelled in her caravan with them on and off. She advises the girl to follow her own path in life.

Mycroft and Sherlock are forced to change their unyielding opinions about Enola’s future. A dramatic shift in the sibling’s relationship takes place after they follow their sister’s investigations into the Duchess’ disappearance. Through filthy London’s streets and underground tunnels, the brothers witness proof they aren’t dealing with the head-strong child, but a courageous, resourceful and clever young woman with a sharp, intelligent mind whose lateral thinking saves lives.

Enola expresses her dream to go to University. This is taken on as an alternative to a finishing school by her rigid-thinking brothers. This decision is further influenced by the gentle and persuasive Florence Nightingale after a private visit.

The mystery of Enola’s mother’s disappearance is resolved in a shattering revelation. All loose ends are tied up. Everything comes full circle on Enola’s birthday.

Title: Enola Holmes Mystery: Book 6 – The Case of the Disappearing Duchess
Author: Nancy Springer
Publisher: Allen & Unwin, $14.99
Publication Date: April 2019
Format: Paperback
For ages: 12+
Type: Middle Grade Fiction

Read all of Anastasia's reviews of this fascinating series including Book 2, Book 4 July, and Book 5 September.