I took a break from reading an actual, serious grown-up book (I know! Grown-up book? But it’s probably good to do that occasionally) to read the final book in the middle grades Enola Holmes series: The Case of the Gypsy Good-bye by Nancy Springer. The series, which begins with The Case of the Missing Marquess, follows the much younger sister of Sherlock Holmes as she runs away from home and lives on her own in London, all while looking for her missing mother and dodging her meddling brothers, Sherlock and Mycroft. Meanwhile, Enola solves crime and finds missing persons.
These books have been great fun so I was happy to read the final installment. It didn’t disappoint me at all. Enola is just as plucky as ever. There are just as many anti-corset tirades as ever (maybe even more!). Enola affects just as many hilariously bizarre disguises, including as a hansom cab driver. There are also more coded messages, including a type of code I was unfamiliar with: the skytale. The language is also so much fun. Nancy Springer has written the books in Enola’s faux nineteenth-century voice. It’s just stylized enough to be interesting without becoming off-putting to the reader. The crime and missing person in this volume are slightly less involved than in the others. Instead, we see more about Enola and her estranged family, which brings the series to a good conclusion.