Liese Sherwood-Fabre knew she was destined to write when she got an A+ in the second grade for her story about Dick, Jane, and Sally’s ruined picnic. After obtaining her PhD from Indiana University, she joined the federal government and had the opportunity to work and live internationally for more than fifteen years. After returning to the states, she seriously pursued her writing career and has recently turned to a childhood passion in the tales of Sherlock Holmes. A recognized Sherlockian scholar, her essays on Sherlock and Victorian England are published across the globe and have appeared in the Baker Street Journal, the premiere publication of the Baker Street Irregulars. Learn more about Liese and her books at her website.https://www.liesesherwoodfabre.com
Constance Straton, a fourteen-year-old girl, has recently become a good friend and partner of thirteen-year-old Sherlock Holmes, and has been enlisted to help him solve the murder of the village midwife, Emma Brown, and save his mother from the gallows. Today we sit down for an interview with Constance.
Good morning, Constance. Can you tell us how you met Sherlock Holmes?
I met his father first. I was arrested for liftin’ something from the village store. Milk for the baby. He was the magistrate what put me in gaol. That’s how I met Sherlock. In gaol. Although I didn’t knows he was the magistrate’s son. He spoke to me, and I hugged him, found a roll in his pocket, and lifted it. It was the best bread ever.
And how did you come to be friends?
He saved my life. In more than one way. I’ll let readers learn more about that when they’s read the book.
Everybody wants to know: what is Sherlock Holmes really like?
Lors, he’s quite a clever one. Knows a lot about a lot of things. Speaks all sorts of languages. I think his mother had a lot to do with that. She’s quite smart herself. Of course, he doesn’t know everything. That’s how’s we became friends. He wanted me to teach him how to be a good pickpocket. That’s one of my specialties. I can knick somethin’ from a man’s pocket without him never feelin’ it. I also have a good voice. Can sing like a bird. I makes money that way too. Singin’ on the street. Sherlock and I, we make a good pair in so many ways.
You’ve mentioned Sherlock and his mother, what about the rest of his family?
They’re nice enough. Squire Holmes, he was the one what sent me to gaol. But I did steal the milk. And he has an Uncle Ernest. He’s clever too—in his own way. So’s his brother Mycroft, but that one’s a bit stuck-up. Not half as nice as Sherlock or his mama.
What’s a secret you can share with readers?
I wants to be singin’ on the stage. Get dressed up all fancy and have people adorin’ my voice. You can makes good money that way. That’s why I practice singin’ in the streets, hopin’ to be discovered.
Thanks, Constance, for your insights into this first case of Sherlock Holmes.
First? What? There’s more?
The Adventure of the Murdered Midwife
The Early Case Files of Sherlock Holmes, Book 1
Before Sherlock Holmes became the world’s greatest consulting detective, scandal rocked the Holmes family.
Arthur Conan Doyle provided few details on Holmes’ boyhood. His ancestors were country squires, his grandmother was the sister of the French artist Vernet, and he had a brother named Mycroft—seven years his senior. Recently, a cache of documents has been discovered detailing, in Sherlock’s own hand, his early forays into criminal investigation.
Only weeks into his first year at Eton, Sherlock's father calls him and his brother back to Underbyrne, the ancestral estate. The village midwife has been found with a pitchfork in her back in the estate's garden, and Mrs. Holmes has been accused of the murder. Can Sherlock find the true killer in time to save her from the gallows?