Enola is determined not to end up in a stuffy boarding school, tightly corseted and learning to take her "proper place" in society -- something that her older brothers, Sherlock and Mycroft, insist she must do. Instead, she has fled from their brotherly (smotherly) concern and has set herself up as a "perditorian" (finder of lost things). As a fourteen-year-old girl on her own in Victorian London, Enola cannot simply start her own business. But she is intelligent and resourceful, and she invents a man to be the owner, while she, in disguise, pretends to be his secretary and does everything herself.
Soon she finds herself in the midst of her first case -- but even as she investigates, she must always look over her shoulder, careful not to catch her brothers' attention. Indeed, when Dr. Watson himself shows up on her doorstep, asking her (unbeknownst to Holmes) to look into her own disappearance, Enola is astounded. Sherlock is worried about her? Is it possible he actually cares about more than family appearances? But how can she reassure him that she is all right, when any communication from her is sure to clue her clever brother in to her new identity?
In this second book in the Enola Holmes mystery series, our heroine has a tricky path to tread, one that takes her to the darkest, most dangerous parts of London in her search for a missing young noblewoman. Enola is a feisty, likable heroine, determined to maintain her independence despite her own loneliness and isolation. I look forward to the next installment in the series.
Books in the Enola Holmes series:
1. The Case of the Missing Marquess
2. The Case of the Left-Handed Lady
3. The Case of the Bizarre Bouquets
The Case of the Left-Handed Lady: An Enola Holmes Mystery by Nancy Springer (Philomel Books, 2007)
Publisher recommends for ages 9 - 12.