A Study in Honor by Claire O'Dell

A Study in Honor

Dr. Janet Watson knows firsthand the horrifying cost of a divided nation. While treating broken soldiers on the battlefields of the New Civil War, a sniper’s bullet shattered her arm and ended her career. Honorably discharged and struggling with the semi-functional mechanical arm that replaced the limb she lost, she returns to the nation’s capital, a bleak, edgy city in the throes of a fraught presidential election. Homeless and jobless, Wats...

Details A Study in Honor

TitleA Study in Honor
Release DateJul 31st, 2018
PublisherHarper Voyager
GenreMystery, Science Fiction, Fiction, Lgbt

Reviews A Study in Honor

  • Elise (TheBookishActress)
    “It’s not as expensive as you think.”Sara Holmes leaned against the entry to the parlor, arms folded and mouth quirked into a smile. The lace gloves on her hands were just visible, though their color had faded to a pale gray.“How did you-”“Deduction. And a certain empathy born of like experience.” god, this was so good. it's a really fucking awesome reimagining of Sherlock Holmes but they're both black sapphic ladies and also, it...
  • Hart
    I was really looking forward to this book, and although it has some great qualities, I didn't enjoy it. I have not read many published Sherlock Holmes adaptations, but I think I've rated them all two or three stars. So, please keep in mind that I may be more biased against adaptations with these characters than I realize.The cover is absolutely perfect; it's so rare for a cover to show the characters exactly as they're described, and I am always ...
  • Joe Crowe
    So cool. That's what this book is.It combines sci-fi and Sherlock Holmes in a feminist telling of the Holmes mythos with Janet Watson and an LGTBQA Sara Holmes in a future after a second Civil War. The author has created spins on the characters that are true to their origins. Clearly, author O'Dell is having a blast with the characters. This is Holmes at the Holmesiest. Beyond the Holmes stuff, the story is a frenetic, intelligent mystery. O'Dell...
  • Paul Daniel Ash
    lovely dystopian procedural I had forgotten, when I started reading it, that it was a re-imagined Sherlock and Holmes with black women. The characterizations are all delightful and the action builds at a terrific, measured pace. I can’t say I’m unconcerned about a white women writing black lives at a time when black authors are struggling to get published, but the work strikes me as well-done.
  • KP
    (Review originally posted on the John H Watson Society website.)General ReviewI think most people could guess by now that I love twists on the classic Holmes story. While I do enjoy the more traditional pastiche—give me a Lyndsay Faye story any day!—there is something that continues to intrigue me about pastiches that do something different to our characters. Holmes and Watson were, after all, men of their time, even if they were eccentric. P...
  • Rhode
    DNFed at page 100. It’s compelling enough to pull you in, but then for me it kept hitting sour notes, and I was disturbed by the author photo.The book’s written in the first person, plus the heroine writes about herself in her journal. We get an unlikely amount of background info (ie infodumping) from that journal. Nobody writes a summary of recent current events in their journal, do they? For that matter, do they write in a bland, complete-s...
  • Cynthia
    this was a really great read - i'm weak for holmes/watson always, and their dynamic was delightful in this. i was shrieking with joy at so many moments; holmes' particular brand of baffling intensity is wonderful. i love claire o'dell's reimagining of them as queer black women in a near-future US, and watson's voice was solid and engaging. and sara holmes is such a deeply devoted weirdo oh my god i love her.
  • erforscherin
    Not my cup of tea, I’m afraid. I’m always game for a genderbending Sherlock Holmes story (hello, Elementary!), but I was pretty disappointed here. Maybe most puzzling were the decisions to make Holmes a spy rather than a detective, and to keep Watson in the dark most of the time and/or repeatedly drug her while the bigger plot happens offscreen — why?? Without getting a chance to see those deductive skills at work, or a true partnership for...
  • Kristen
    A Study in Honor has a great premise and I loved a lot of the ideas that went into this reimagining of Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson. I did think that Janet Watson's characterization was well done and that she herself was the highlight of the novel, but I also thought that her promising dynamic with Sara Holmes never quite gelled. Ultimately, I found it to be rather slow going much of the time since the investigation didn't particularly interest...
  • Starr
    I was given a copy of this book, free, in exchange for my honest opinion. This is a gender and race flipped Sherlock Holmes retelling. Though I was interested in it, I have to admit that I ended up enjoying it a lot more than expected. Dr. Janet Watson was a surgeon in the army, on the front lines during the new civil war. She was discharged when she was shot and lost her arm during one of the battles against the New Confederacy. Now that she is...
  • Geonn Cannon
    It takes a while for the mystery to get rolling, mainly because there's so much set-up (which I appreciate). This new Watson and Holmes are an intriguing pair, and I look forward to reading more about them in the future. Definitely lives up to the anticipation created when I read the summary.
  • Noella Handley
    An unsettling vision of what our near future could be like. Fun for fans of Sherlock Holmes, but also completely stands up as a great story on its own.
  • Lexie
    I went into this book intrigued for three reasons:- Claire O'Dell is the (open) pseudonym for fantasy author Beth Bernobich, who's works I adore- Female Sherlock Holmes and Watson!- Near Future/quasi-scifi leanings!The fact both of them were black and queer didn't even register with me - I saw the cover (which of course features two Black women - also I love this cover), but I hadn't read the backcover before I was requesting the book.This is a c...
  • Alice, as in Wonderland
    Oh yeah, so I'm biased. Holmes and Watson have been reincarnated a thousand times over, and I lap it up every single time, but so rarely have they been women of color, let alone woc AND queer. If there was a button that decided if this book could enter the world, I might have broken it through sheer force of want. This is a Watson book. You know, it's a little weird to say that, because many adaptations of Holmes do a great disservice to Watson. ...
  • Eric
    TL;DR A Study in Honor by Claire O'Dell is the gender-flipped twist on the Holmes icon that I didn’t know I needed. Highly recommended! Review To paraphrase Heraclitus, you can never step into the same stream twice. This simple saying occupies a Schrodinger’s version of truth because you both can and can’t. The stream itself is the collection of water, land, stone, and geographic marker while at the same time each of those are undergoing mi...
  • Megan
    Sherlock Holmes has never really been my thing. My sister stole the big collected Arthur Conan Doyle stories from our dad's shelves and then she read all of them, and Holmes became her territory. I could have encroached, but she and I--every once in a while--decide to differentiate ourselves, so that maybe, just maybe, people will stop thinking we're twins. So Sherlock was my sister's thing, and I enjoyed the idea of it but generally stayed away....
  • Berni Phillips
    I loved this. I'm not the biggest Sherlock Holmes fan, but O'Dell's take on the Holmes/Watson mystique in this book really worked for me.I liked that the focus was on Dr. Janet Watson throughout with Sara Holmes somewhat obscured and definitely mysterious. I hope this is the first of a series and that Holmes becomes less of a mystery in later books, but I really liked having Watson be the primary character.This is a Holmes/Watson for the 21st cen...
  • William Bentrim
    A Study in Honor by Claire OdellThis book is set in a not too distant future that is been impacted by the divisiveness of today's politics. You don't need to be clairvoyant to consider the impact that the divisiveness in our nation today could easily lead to a second Civil War. When the commander-in-chief is suggesting that we assault our neighbor if they disagree with anything he says then you can see how this could lead to future Civil War. The...
  • Jessica
    Fast, interesting read. Lots of fun twisty layers. Good set-up to what looks like the beginning of a series.Own voices for PTSD and bisexuality. Not own voices for amputation or race. Set in a near-future, post-Trump dystopia. The heroine is a queer, Black, disabled woman, so... read between those lines. The politics in this will not be comfortable for everyone. If you don't like overt feminism or books that call out antiblack racism, you won't e...
  • Jordan Lombard
    This is more a 3.5 I think. I loved Janet Watson a lot. The first half of the book is about her return to civilian life after losing a limb and battling the VA for a job and a new prosthetic. The mystery doesn’t show up until halfway through the book, but it’s good, though there is no proper deductions as the original Sherlock did them.What I didn’t like was Sara Holmes. She’s controlling and manipulative with Janet Watson, and not in a w...
  • Joan
    I love Sherlock Holmes and mysteries, so I couldn't wait to get my hands on this book. I loved the twists on the original story. Watson and Holmes are both black females and their characters are fleshed out and believable. The story takes place in a dystopian future where the USA is in the midst of another civil war and reflects some of the current political turmoil. The writing was superb as well, so why isn't this a new favorite book? In spite ...
  • Beej
    *spoilers*The characters in this book were for the most part phenomenal, I loved Janet Watson. I wasn't quite as sold on Sara Holmes but she was written rather well as well. The world building was done fantastic but there were times where I wish it'd be scaled back to focus on the mystery because that's really what I pick up reimagined Sherlock Holmes books for. The mystery in this was also a little disappointing and took half the book to get to ...
  • Reeter
    Man, I'm so disappointed with myself. I wanted to like this. No, wait, I wanted to LOVE this. But I thought this was just ok. What I liked:- The world building, and the Second Civil War. I've been reading a few books about the US going through another, but more devastating civil war, and all have been interesting. - Sara Holmes. I thought Holmes was a great character, I thought she had some great lines. And that's about it. I didn't find myself r...
  • Maryann Huber
    I was intrigued with the new take on Holmes and Watson which is why I purchased this version. From the start I was hooked, the style of writing is even, and steady. Every step of the way that this story unfolds is flawless.Watson is perfect as the angry disillusioned war veteran her character's efforts to survive and win always at her core. Then we have Holmes, keeping with the original version aloof, self centered and mysterious. Throughout you ...
  • John Rennie
    Reluctantly I have to say I can't recommend this book. It's not awful and it wasn't an ordeal to read, but with too many books and too few lifetimes there are better candidates for the top of your reading list.It's a pretty straightforward Holmes and Watson riff - the protagonists are even called Sara Holmes and Janet Watson, and the apartment where they live is 2B (though not in Baker Street). The mystery they solve is also fairly straightforwar...
  • Ashley P
    This is a futuristic sci-fi/dystopia genderbent and relatively awesome book. Watson is more cynical than ever within this book, and if possible even tougher than in the originals. She is a woman who is near broken but still refuses to give up. She's got gumption, shall we say. Holmes is a little more...blase in this novel than in other Holmes novels or reiterations. I did wish that more of her was seen in this book as I did not really get attac...
  • Joseph
    Absolutely fan-total-tastic! It's a little bit scary how such an amazing work of sci-fi dystopia could be so real. This could be the world of tomorrow, or even today, and that is not a good thing. Read it and you'll see what I mean. This author does a wonderful job of telling the horrors of war and the hard, to say the least, lives of soldiers who manage to survive to return to the civilian world. She also does a great job of telling the true sto...
  • Robert Mcmanus
    I am always interested in a treatment of the Holmes-Watson adventures and A Study in Honor never disappointed. The set up is a Dr. Watson returning from an American Civil War taking place in the Midwest with its roots in the 2016 election and the subsequent rise of the white supremacists. She has lost an arm and has a glitchy mechanical prosthesis.Holmes is also female and a FBI agent. She exhibits several of the classic Holmes character points i...