The Game

The Game

Book - 2005
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Random House, Inc.

It’s only the second day of 1924, but Mary Russell and her husband, Sherlock Holmes, find themselves embroiled in intrigue. It starts with a New Year’s visit from Holmes’s brother Mycroft, who comes bearing a strange package containing the papers of an English spy named Kimball O’Hara—the same Kimball known to the world through Kipling’s famed Kim. Inexplicably, O’Hara withdrew from the “Great Game” of espionage and now he has just as inexplicably disappeared.

When Russell discovers Holmes’s own secret friendship with the spy, she knows the die is cast: she will accompany her husband to India to search for the missing operative. But Russell soon learns that in this faraway and exotic land, it’s often impossible to tell friend from foe—and that some games aren’t played for fun but for the highest stakes of all…life and death.

Baker & Taylor
Traveling incognito, Mary Russell and her spouse, Sherlock Holmes, head for India to search for a missing spy, the famous orphan who inspired Rudyard Kipling's "Kim," and find themselves caught up in a dangerous intrigue.

Publisher: New York : Bantam Books, 2005, c2004
Edition: Bantam mass market ed
ISBN: 9780553386370
Branch Call Number: MYSTERY KIN
Characteristics: 442 p. :,map ;,18 cm.


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Oct 13, 2018

I'd have given this one another whole star (5 1/2) except that the maharajah is such a combination of suave and slimy. As usual, Russell's research into the time and place Mycroft Holmes sends his brother Sherlock and wife Russell, on almost no notice, richly rewards the reader. One of Mycroft's spys hasn't been heard of in three years, and he needs to know if he's been killed, is the traitor who's killed several other spys, or has gone to the other side. Their job is to track him down. The sights and scents of 1920s India are hugely evocative, to say nothing of what the English weekend house party is like, transplanted to a palace in a princely state of northern India. If you've ever wondered what the sport of pig-sticking is like, wonder no more. It's highly unlikely you'll volunteer to participate.

Sep 18, 2017

I am a very big fan of this series, but in this case I decided a little over half way through to skim the rest and be done with it. I was thinking of going back to read all of it in detail, but I was so disgusted by numerous aspects of the story, and the sick man who is the cause of these things, I said "life is too short" and put it down. There are lovely elements in this story (Bindra, O'Hara, the magic, the descriptions of early mornings in 1920's India, and so on). The three and a half stars are for these things, for the quality of writing, and for the incredible research that went into this. But at a certain point this story began to feel as appealing to me as a certain macabre banquet that I will probably try and fail to get out of my memory.

PimaLib_ChristineR Feb 23, 2017

A fascinating and fun entry to the series. Holmes and Russell get to do good old fashioned sleuthing but there's the added fun of looking for the missing Kim of Kipling fame. Besides an enjoyable story, I found the background on the politics of the area to be as thought provoking as her earlier delve into Palestine. The more things change, the more they stay the same.

May 20, 2016

I enjoy this series, but this time it was hard to distinguish which was the racism of the time in the actions of the characters and what the author appears to accept as appropriate. I haven't had that disquieting feeling in the other books.

Nov 20, 2014

Definitely not my favourite in the series, but it's still fantastic. Good work again, King. You've done it.

Oct 07, 2012

I came late to this excellent series but highly recommend it. The writing is smart, elegant, witty & contemporary to it's time. The relationship between Mary & Holmes is believable despite their age difference as both are misfits of sorts. If you ever wondered what happened to Sherlock in his later years, start at the beginning and enjoy. Hopefully, there are many more to come.

Dec 14, 2010

Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes in India. I enjoy this series.

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