The Case of the Baffled Policeman

17 Feb

Ex-Inspector De Ath has someone trying to kill him. Does it relate to a case in his career that he solved with the assistance of a young Sherlock Holmes? Watson journeys to Torquay to find out.

“The Case of the Baffled Policeman” by Allen Sharp is very short. More a long short story than even a novella. Still, the story has pace and verve. Holmes and Watson are well written and the friendship between them is solid. It’s a fine story that fairly rips along.

“The Case of the Baffled Policeman” was published in 1989 by Cambridge University Press as part of their “In the Footsteps of Sherlock Holmes” series, so may be a little hard to get if you are interested. ABE have a couple of copies available:

A pleasant way to while away an hour. Highly recommended.

The Hackney Horror

11 Feb

Someone, or something, is stealing the best brains in Britain. Not the bodies. Just the brains. Holmes and Watson investigate and come face to face with appalling horror.

“The Hackney Horror” by William Meikle is a delicious horror story. I can’t give much detail without giving away the plot, but the story fairly rips along from one thrill to the next.

The friendship between Holmes and Watson is solid. And William Meikle gives us a great Lestrade; all sarcasm and snark.

If you like your Holmes a little strange, you will love “The Hackney Horror”.

Highly recommended.

Sherlock Holmes and the Case of the London Dock Deaths – Launch

8 Feb

My third book, “Sherlock Holmes and the Case of the London Dock Deaths” was launched online via zoom over the weekend.

It was a fun hour, with me reading the first two chapters of the book, and Steve Emecz from MX Publishing asking me questions.

The launch was recorded so if you would like to see it check out the link below. Thanks to everyone who came and to Steve and MX Publishing for hosting the event.

The Real Mary Kelly

7 Feb

Written by Wynne Weston-Davies, “The Real Mary Kelly” is the story of Elizabeth Weston-Davies, who was the real Mary Kelly. Even at the time of her murder police considered her name to be false but could not find the real woman. The real woman who was the final victim of the killer known as Jack the Ripper.

Wynne Weston-Davies, her great-nephew, sets out to bring his great-aunt to life. From her time as lady’s maid to the Marchioness of Londonderry, to an expensive brothel in Kensington, to an ill-advised marriage, to France, to the East End of London, and, finally, to her violent and gruesome death.

Wynne Weston-Davies has written and interesting and well-researched book that gives a degree on insight into the life of the woman that history knows as “Mary Kelly” and also to the man that we believes killed her and the other woman in those dreadful months of 1888.

Well worth a read. recommended.

These Scattered Houses

31 Jan

“These Scattered Houses” is a Sherlock Holmes pastiche written by Gretchen Altabef and published by MX Publishing.

Set in New York near the end of the Great Hiatus – Sherlock Holmes finds sanctuary at Vassar Women’s College under the guise of Professor Sigerson. Naturally, murder and mystery follow him.

“These Scattered Houses” is a delightful book. It is well written and absorbing. The research is impeccable and the book has a comprehensive bibliography at the end.

Ms. Altabef has done a sterling job. Even though Holmes is bereft of his Watson, Holmes’s voice rings clear and true in this excellent novel.

It is interesting to see Holmes outside of his usual haunt of London and its environs. The story works well and is an excellent read.


Thank you to Steve Emecz at MX Publishing for the review copy.

You can buy “These Scattered Houses” here:

And while you are on the MX site, why not check out my author page there:

Sherlock Holmes: The Spider’s Web

26 Jan

“Sherlock Holmes: The Spider’s Web” is the latest offering from author Philip Purser-Hallard. In this book Sherlock Holmes and John Watson investigate a murder at a society party – but the host and his family and friends are more concerned with the inconvenience than finding the killer. As Holmes and Watson delve deeper they begin to uncover secrets that people would far rather were forgotten.

The joy of this book is the fact that the author has seamlessly woven Arthur Conan Doyle’s characters into the world of Oscar Wilde. The society family is that of Moncrieff: the family from “The Importance of Being Earnest”. Other Oscar Wilde characters flow in and out of the story.

Philip Purser-Hallard has a deliciously Wildean turn of phrase. I found myself laughing out loud more than once during the course of my reading.

“The Spider’s Web” is a delectable concoction of a book. Light and fizzy on the tongue, but so very satisfying.

A fabulous, fun, 5-Star read. Highly recommended.

Sherlock Holmes: The Devil’s Dust

10 Jan

When the lodger of a landlady friend of Mrs. Hudson’s is found poisoned, Mrs. Hudson turns to her own lodger, Sherlock Holmes for help. Meanwhile, big game hunter and adventurer Allan Quartermain is in town and somehow, his mission ties up with the murder.

“Sherlock Holmes: The Devil’s Dust” by James Lovegrove is an absolute rip-roarer of a book. While at first glance H. Rider Haggard’s hero Quartermain would not seem to be a good fit in Arthur Conan Doyle’s world of Holmes, the two mesh together almost seamlessly.

The story is fast paced and exciting. A wonderful combination of murder mystery and traditional adventure story.

There are plenty of Holmesian references to be found.

The relationship between Holmes and Watson is nicely balanced, with Watson having an edge of sarcastic snark to him, that I loved.

If you haven’t read “Sherlock Holmes: The Devil’s Dust” I suggest adding it to your To Be Read list as soon as you can. Highly recommended.

Online Launch of Sherlock Holmes and the Case of the London Dock Deaths

7 Jan

My latest book, “Sherlock Holmes and the Case of the London Dock Deaths” will be launched via a zoom webinar.

The webinar will be held on February 6th at 11.00am AEDT. For other places this is:

February 6th, 1.00pm – NZDT

February 5th, 12.00am (midnight) – UK

February 5th, 7.00pm – EST (USA)

There will be an Q&A and I will be doing a reading from the book. There will also be a free mystery audiobook for every attendee.

The link is below. I hope you can join me and Steve from MX Publishing for the event.

The Art of Sherlock Holmes Authenticated Prints

4 Jan

Phil Crowick came up with the idea of new pieces of art based on Sherlock Holmes stories. This idea resulted in four gorgeous coffee table books, and two exhibitions in the USA before the pandemic, where some of the original art sold.

Now authenticated prints of these delightful works are available directly from MX Publishing. There are 55 to chose from. Four stand out for me.

The Affair of Miss Finney (#36)

The Coffee Traders Dilemma (#37)

The Case of the Cursed Clock (#46)

The Adventure of the Medium (#54)

Why not check them out? You might find something that you would like to add to your Sherlock Holmes collection, art collection, or just something you think would look good on your wall.

The Sensible Necktie and Other Stories of Sherlock Holmes

3 Jan

“The Sensible Neckties and Other Stories of Sherlock Holmes” is the second volume of Sherlock Holmes short stories from Peter K. Andersson, published by MX Publishing. The quality of the stories are quite on par with the first book.

Peter Andersson writes excellent traditional Holmes short stories. Every story was a good read.

Two stories really stood out for me. The first was “The Adventure of the Hobnail Boots”. His Lestrade is robust and entertaining.

The second story was the delightful “The Remarkable Experience of Professor Parkins”. This story is a retelling of M. R. James classic ghost story “Oh Whistle, and I’ll Come to You, My Lad.” Turning Holmes’s logical eye onto a story of sheer illogical and terror made for a great read.

As in the previous collection, the friendship between Holmes and Watson is strong.

Highly recommended.

The book is available directly from MX Publishing:

Maybe check out my books whilst you are there:

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