We’ve discussed a few of the serious players in the world of mystery and detective fiction, so I thought we’d take a look at a fun take on our favorite detective, Sherlock, in the form of a determined little furball bent on solving crime like his human counterpart: Basil of Baker Street.
Basil is written by Eve Titus, a children’s book author with a penchant for anthropomorphizing animals and casting them out into the world for adventures that have captured the hearts and minds of children everywhere. I myself was an avid Basil fan as a child, and would often play pretend that Basil and his trusty sidekick Dawson were solving crimes behind the baseboards and between the walls of my childhood home.
Titus was skilled at meshing the human and mouse world, melding them together in a fantastical mashup that was as entertaining for children as it was for the adults who shared her stories at bedtime. Basil scampers off on adventures from the wild west all the way down to Mexico, solving crimes and outmaneuvering his arch nemesis, Ratigan, at every turn.
Basil is like Sherlock in many ways. He smokes a pipe, and is prone to fits of melodrama and moodiness. Like Sherlock, he plays a musical instrument, but unlike Sherlock it is a flute, not a violin! They keep the company of a doctor who chronicles their adventures, and find themselves invariably warring against their professor type enemies, Moriarty and Ratigan, respectively.
If you’re looking for a lighthearted read with a mystery that leaves you with the warm fuzzies, pick up Basil of Baker Street. However, if you’re looking for a criminally fun time that can’t be found in a children’s book, you might consider trying a murder mystery with The Murder Mystery Company at a crime scene near you!