Review: A Study in Charlotte by Brittany Cavallaro

A Study in Charlotte by Brittany Cavallero

A Study in Charlotte (Charlotte Holmes #1)
Brittany Cavallaro
Katherine Tegen Books
Published on March 1, 2016

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

About A Study in Charlotte

The last thing Jamie Watson wants is a rugby scholarship to Sherringford, a Connecticut prep school just an hour away from his estranged father. But that’s not the only complication: Sherringford is also home to Charlotte Holmes, the famous detective’s great-great-great-granddaughter, who has inherited not only Sherlock’s genius but also his volatile temperament. From everything Jamie has heard about Charlotte, it seems safer to admire her from afar.

From the moment they meet, there’s a tense energy between them, and they seem more destined to be rivals than anything else. But when a Sherringford student dies under suspicious circumstances, ripped straight from the most terrifying of the Sherlock Holmes stories, Jamie can no longer afford to keep his distance. Jamie and Charlotte are being framed for murder, and only Charlotte can clear their names. But danger is mounting and nowhere is safe—and the only people they can trust are each other.

My Review

A STUDY IN CHARLOTTE has been on my reading list since before it hit the shelves. (I wasn’t cool enough to get a review copy, but I got a free audiobook version from the first week of Audiobooks Sync summer program.) So I’ve finally had a chance to read it.

Sad, terrible disclaimer: I’ve never read the Sherlock Holmes stories by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, and I kind of wish I had read them before reading this book. I feel like I would have gotten more of a kick out of the moments which must be a nod to the classic original stories. But I very much enjoyed reading the book even without that insider fun.

I liked that both Jamie and Charlotte have some big flaws (Jamie’s anger management issues and big emotions; Charlotte’s addictions and inability to see past her analysis of a situation) which somehow make them a stronger team. While it’s not really a character-driven story, the relationships between characters evolve quite a bit as the story unfolds. Jamie must give up the idolized version of Charlotte from his childhood, and faces an opportunity to build a relationship with his dad (who has his own flaws) and step-family.

While I wish the language had been cleaner, I really enjoyed reading A STUDY IN CHARLOTTE. The murder mystery kept me on the edge of my seat, and the complex relationships and intriguing cast of characters led me to devour the book from beginning to end. This is a series I want to see through to the end.

A Study in Charlotte on Amazon

Recommended for Ages 14 up.

Cultural Elements
Charlotte is (of course) from London. Other characters from Connecticut.

Profanity/Crude Language Content
Extreme profanity used somewhat frequently.

Romance/Sexual Content
Some lusty comments from Jamie – things like noticing a girl’s curves or wondering who’s having sex. A boy makes lewd comments to and about a girl. Later we learn he sexually assaulted a girl (we don’t learn any of the details other than that she was not sober and did not consent.). Brief kiss between a boy and girl.

Spiritual Content

Violent Content
Brief descriptions of a fist fight between two boys. A boy is discovered murdered by poison and snake bite. Someone attacks a girl and shoves a plastic jewel down her throat. A bomb explodes and injures some people. An unknown virus threatens to kill a boy if he doesn’t find the antidote quickly.

Drug Content
A girl takes Oxycodone and smokes cigarettes. Teens drink vodka at a weekly party. References to drug rehab and cocaine use in the past.

A Study in Charlotte on Goodreads
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About Kasey

Reads things. Writes things. Fluent in sarcasm. Willful optimist. Cat companion, chocolate connoisseur, coffee drinker. There are some who call me Mom.

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