I am saddened by the news of the death of American writer Carole Nelson Douglas. A prolific author of both mysteries and fantasy (both straight and urban), I discovered her work in 1992 when I bought in a London bookstore the first two novels of her Irene Adler series, Good Night, Mister Holmes, and Good Morning, Irene. The Irene Adler novels (there’s six more of them) are Sherlockian pastiches focusing on the adventures of The Woman, and are among the best Holmes-related fiction I ever read.
What cemented my admiration for Carole Nelson Douglas was a long article, printed in the wonderful anthology The Fine Art of Murder, about writing and criticism. Her considerations on the relationship between writers, readers and critics stayed with me to this day.
Carole Nelson Douglas has left behind a huge corpus of novels, that are likely to suit a variety of tastes – from secondary world fantasies to urban fantasy novels, to books about cats solving crimes, historical adventure and science fiction. All of them show a class and an elegance that is often surprising given the genre.
Of them all, the Irene Adler books are certainly my favorite, and are highly recommended.
Certainly they are the best way to remember a gifted writer.