Meet Laurie R. King, Author of The Lantern’s Dance

Join us as New York Times bestselling author Laurie R. King visits San Mateo County Libraries on Tuesday, April 16 at 6:00 PM at the Half Moon Bay Library! Laurie will be discussing the newest book in her Mary Russell–Sherlock Holmes series, The Lantern's Dance. We’re also thrilled to commemorate the 30th anniversary of King’s The Beekeeper's Apprentice, which first introduced Mary Russell to delighted readers in 1994.  

Keep an eye out for free giveaway copies of The Lantern’s Dance at your nearest San Mateo County Libraries location! The first fifty attendees will receive a free copy to take home.  

Inside the Mystery 

After their recent adventures in Transylvania, Russell and Holmes look forward to spending time with Holmes’ son, the famous artist Damian Adler, and his family. But when they arrive at Damian’s house, they discover that the Adlers have fled from a mysterious threat. They also find four crates packed with memorabilia related to Holmes’ grand-uncle, including an old journal written in code and an antique yet sophisticated zoetrope, fitted with strips of paper whose images dance with the lantern’s spin.

Intrigued, Russell sets about deciphering the intricate cryptograph, slowly realizing that each entry is built around an image—the first of which is a child, bundled into a carriage by an abductor, watching her mother recede from view. Each entry she decodes brings more questions: who is the young Indian woman who created this elaborate puzzle? What does she have to do with Damian, or the Vernets, or the threat hovering over the house? With the secrets of the past reaching into the present, Russell must figure out how the journal and the lantern are related to Damien—and possibly to Sherlock Holmes himself. 

Could there be things about Holmes’ own history that even the master detective has not uncovered? 

Get to Know Laurie R. King 

Laurie R. King is the New York Times bestselling author of 30 novels and other works, including the Mary Russell-Sherlock Holmes stories (The Beekeeper’s Apprentice was chosen as one of the “20th Century’s Best Crime Novels” by the IMBA.) She has won the Agatha, Anthony, Creasey, Edgar, Lambda, Macavity, Wolfe and Romantic Times Career Achievement awards; has an honorary doctorate in theology; and is a Baker Street Irregular. In 2022, she was named Grand Master by Mystery Writers of America. She co-edited (with Lee Child) the new handbook from Mystery Writers of America, How to Write a Mystery, and has a new contemporary series with SFPD Inspector Raquel Laing, beginning with Back to the Garden

What Critics and Readers Have to Say 

“Deftly interlacing present and past, King offers further fascinating insights into Holmes’ family while also delivering an intriguing mystery.”—The Washington Post 

“The elaborate family lore King has constructed for Holmes impresses, and she pays longtime readers dividends with a number of satisfying disclosures about the detective’s past. Series fans are sure to be pleased.”—Publishers Weekly 

“Mary Russell solves the 100+ year old puzzle of Sherlock Holmes’s ancestry in Laurie R. King’s masterful The Lantern’s Dance. King’s brilliant tale of a legacy of racism and sexism will remind contemporary readers that those horrors are not new. Huzzah!”—Leslie S. Klinger, editor, New Annotated Sherlock Holmes