Posts Tagged ‘Sherlock Holmes’

The Adventures of Marisol Holmes: All About Spiders

Thursday, September 21st, 2017

In this week’s post, I’m going to talk to you about one type of shifter species in The Adventures of Marisol Holmes series that we haven’t discussed yet. Spiders. In the books, the mortician / coroner is a spider named Mormont.

Spiders are arthropods, meaning they have eight legs. They also have fangs that inject venom. There are at least 45,700 spider species and 113 spider families. That’s a lot of species! On top of that, spiders are found worldwide on every continent except Antarctica (so for those of you who have arachnophobia, like I do, let’s head to Antarctica!).

Male spiders have complex mating rituals to avoid being eaten by the females of the species. Males usually survive a few mating rituals in their life. Females weave silk eggcases after mating, each of which may contain hundreds of eggs. Females will often carry their young around or share food with them.

Social behavior among spiders is often complex. Some spiders such as the widow spiders are solitary creatures, but other spider species hunt co-operatively, or even share food.

Some spider species have venom dangerous to humans but most venom is harmless. Spiders use it to hunt their prey (not, contrary to popular belief, to hunt down human beings at least a hundred times their size). Spiders capture their prey by creating sticky webs, which they then manipulate to capture prey. When a prey is captured in their web, they inject the prey with venom, paralyzing the fly / bug / whatever else insect they captured.

 

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The Adventures of Marisol Holmes: All About Foxes

Thursday, September 14th, 2017

As you know, The Adventures of Marisol Holmes features a school of shifters, and one of the shifters who appears in the story is a fox shifter. Foxes are small-to-medium-sized, and “fox” is actually a group name given to twelve distinct species of “vulpes”. On top of that, there are also 25 current or extinct species often called foxes.

The red fox is the most common subspecies of foxes, and currently has 47 recognized subspecies.

Foxes are smaller than wovles, jackals and even than domestic dogs. Foxes typically live in small family groups, but some foxes, in particular the Arctic fox, are known to be solitary.

Foxes are omnivores. They often eat insects, reptiles and birds, but can also eat eggs and plants. A female fox is called a “vixen”. Unfortunately, fox hunting was a popular sport since the 16th century in particular in the United Kingdom. While it’s now banned to hunt with dogs, hunting without dogs is still permitted.

In Asian culture, foxes are depicted as familiar spirits. They have magical powers, and are seen as mischievous tricksters. These spirits are called “kitsune”. Kitsune can take on a human form, and can duplicate the appearance of a specific person, in particular beautiful women. While the fox shifters in The Adventures of Marisol Holmes are also quite mischievous, they don’t have additional magical abilities like the Japanese kitsune.

 

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A Study in Scarlet vs A Study in Shifters

Thursday, September 7th, 2017

The Adventures of Marisol Holmes: A Study in Shifters is completely different from Arthur Conan Doyle’s “A Study in Scarlet”, but the title is based on it. “A Study in Scarlet” was published in 1887 and marks the first appearance of Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson.

Since the Marisol Holmes series features a heroine who is the great-great-granddaughter of Sherlock Holmes, and who has the same intelligent, sharp mind as her ancestor does, it made a lot of sense to base the title of the first book in the series on the title of the first Sherlock Holmes book. And admit it, “A Study in Shifters” sounds pretty cool either way.

In “A Study in Scarlet”, Dr. Watson (the narrator) meets Sherlock Holmes, who reveals he’s a consulting detective. They first meet in a laboratory where Holmes is experimenting and explains to Watson the importance of bloodstains as evidence in criminal trials. In A Study of Shifters, Marisol too explains the importance of bloodstains in crime scenes.

Watson is amazed by how perceptive Holmes is, considering the consulting detective notices right away that Watson served in Afghanistan, without the doctor telling him.

Holmes is asked to consult on a murder case, but he’s reluctant to do so. Watson urges him to reconsider, and then Holmes invites Watson along. While Watson is on the sidelines, more a spectator than an active participant in solving the crime, and most of the credit goes to Holmes, he does offer some helpful suggestions that help Holmes along the way.

 

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