Described as a cross between Doctor Who and Sherlock, I could not pass over this book by first time author William Ritter. Indeed, the character of Jackaby is best described as a Sherlock Holmes specializing in cases related to the supernatural and occult.
At the opening of the novel, Abigail Rook is newly arrived in America and looking for an adventure. She soon ends up by the side of Jackaby, a self- proclaimed detective, aiding him as he investigates a bizarre series of murders. Abigail proves herself an asset to Jackaby for her ability to notice the ordinary details that would be overlooked by others. She also gets the adventure she has been searching for as she is confronted with the existence of magic, banshees, ghosts, trolls and a whole host of other supernatural creatures; some of them friendly, some dangerous.
While the mystery at the heart of Jackaby is somewhat predictable, the characters are what make this book so enjoyable. Abigail is independent, resourceful and adaptable. She is quick to piece together clues, and shows real strength when confronted by a world of the supernatural that she did not even know existed. Jackaby is somewhat of a mystery himself, but any fan of Sherlock Holmes will enjoy his rapid deductions and eccentric manner. I look forward to more of his past being revealed in the book’s sequel. Recommended for fans of mysteries and the supernatural.