A Scandal in Battersea

by Mercedes Lackey
Release date: October 16, 2017
Type: speculative fiction
Genres: fantasy

This twelfth novel in the bestselling Elemental Masters series, returning to Lackey’s reimagined Sherlock Holmes in a magical early 20th-century London.

In this Victorian historical fantasy novel, a member of the famed Bloomsbury writers’ group attempts to conjure a doppelganger — an Earth Elemental Golem — to do his writing for him while he enjoys the London social scene. When a shadow image of himself knocks on his door some nights after his invocation, he lets it into the house thinking that his ritual has been a success, not realizing that the Golem is actually inhabited by the ghost of a murderous fiend — part Jack the Ripper and part Mr. Hyde.

Mary and Dr. Watson are called in to investigate a serial killer in Battersea, a rough neighborhood in London. They discover that many more women are missing than have turned up actually dead. Meanwhile, their colleagues Nan and Sarah, a Psychic and a Medium, are tracking down a villain who is causing scandal by seducing young ladies of quality and then vanishing. The girls all report gaps in their memories, but the common thread is that they all met this rake at public lectures, and the next thing they knew, they were waking up in seedy Battersea hotel rooms, alone and naked. Most suspiciously of all, none of them can remember just what their seducer looks like.

Nan, Sarah, and the Watsons discover that they are hunting the same man — who isn’t a man at all. It will require Elemental Magic, Sarah’s mediumistic powers, and all of their combined wit and cunning to destroy the Golem…before all of London succumbs to its powers.

(updated 2017-10-16)

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