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Young Sherlock Holmes is back to solve his fifth dangerous mystery.
Kidnapped and taken to China, Sherlock finds himself plunged into another adventure. How can three men be bitten by the same poisonous snake in different parts of Shanghai? Who wants them dead, and why? The answer seems to lie in a message hidden in a diagram like a spider’s web. But solving it leads to an even more urgent question: what has all this got to do with a plot to blow up an American warship? Sherlock is about to brave terrors greater than any he has faced before . . .
There was a dark line on the horizon. Sherlock could see it as he gazed out across the ocean. Mostly the sky was a clear blue, but there, in the distance, it shaded down to an unhealthy purple darkness, like an old bruise. He would have assumed that it was land, except that it was off to the west of the ship. The only land nearby was to the east – the southernmost tip of Africa.