Tag Archives: Anthology

The Duck is Launched!

19 Jun

“The Adventure of the Bloody Duck and other tales of Sherlock Holmes” has been launched.

Steve Emecz of MX Publishing hosted the online launch on Zoom where I read one of the stories from the book and answered questions.

If you would like to watch the launch, you can find the video here. It goes for about half an hour.

The Shadows of Sherlock Holmes

1 May

“The Shadows of Sherlock Holmes” is an anthology of crime stories from authors that are roughly contemporary with Sir Arthur Doyle. Writers of the calibre of Edgar Allan Poe, Baroness Orczy and Doyle’s brother-in-law, E. W. Hornung. The book was edited by noted Holmesian author David Stuart Davies and published by Wordsworth Classics.

With any anthology there are good stories and bad stories, and in the case of older stories, some that have not withstood the passage of time. On the whole, however, the book was a good read. For me, the best stories were:

The Absent-Minded Coterie – by Robert Barr
The Duchess of Wiltshire’s Diamonds – by Guy Boothby
The Great Pearl Mystery – by Baroness Orczy

If you come across a copy, it is worth a read.

The Adventure of the Bloody Duck

26 Apr

My upcoming book “The Adventure of the Bloody Duck and other tales of Sherlock Holmes” is now on the review site Reedsy Discovery.

If you like to read and review new books, this site is excellent. Check it out here: Reedsy Discovery

The Tea House Detective: The Old Man in the Corner

18 Apr

“The Tea House Detective: The Old Man in the Corner” was written by Baroness Orcy. The stories in this volume were originally published in book form in 1908. The edition I read was published by Pushkin Vertigo in 2018.

One does not associate Baroness Orczy with crime fiction. To me, like with many others, her name resonates with historical fiction, her being the writer of the class “The Scarlet Pimpernel”.

The stories are all well written and the character of the Old Man in the Corner with his compulsive tieing of knots, was both interesting and odd. The female journalist listening to his stories was little more than a device to get the old man’s tales out; he could have been talking to the wall. Except in the last story, when the character, Miss Polly Burton really stands out.

All the stories are excellent, but the stand out one for me was the very first story, “The Fenchurch Street Mystery”.

A fascinating book. Recommended.

The Adventure of the Bloody Duck and other tales of Sherlock Holmes

9 Feb

“The Adventure of the Bloody Duck and other tales of Sherlock Holmes” is the title of my anthology of six short stories due for publication by MX Publishing on 19th June 2022.

There are a couple of offers going on to help celebrate this.

The first is a Kickstarter with a number of rewards on offer, including autographed copies of the anthology, and, if you are interested, the chance to be a character in a forthcoming story.

The second is a ‘3 for 2’ offer from MX Publishing on books by their Australian authors.

Why not check them out?

The Improbable Casebook of Sherlock Holmes

2 Feb

“The Improbable Casebook of Sherlock Holmes” is an anthology of seven short stories written by Nick Cardillo and published by MX Publishing.

It is an excellent volume. Every story swings along nicely, with suitably exciting denouements.

Three stories really stood out for me: The Scholar of Silchester Court, A Ghost from the Past, and The Adventure of the Weeping stone. A Ghost from the Past would have to be my favourite, as we rarely get to see the fallout from Holmes’s cases.

Nick Cardillo is spot on with his characterizations. Both Holmes and Watson are canonically sound and their friendship is solid.

It is one of the best single author anthologies I have read. Highly recommended.

“The Improbable Casebook of Sherlock Holmes” is available directly from MX Publishing

The Manifestations of Sherlock Holmes

24 Oct

“The Manifestations of Sherlock Holmes” by James Lovegrove is a collection of the author’s short stories, most of which have been printed in various anthologies.

I like collections like this, because I get a chance to read stories I may well have missed upon their original publication.

With any anthology there are going to be stories that you don’t like, but also ones that really stand out for you. In “The Manifestations of Sherlock Holmes” the stand out stories for me were:

The Adventure of the Marchindale Stiletto
The Strange Case of Dr Sacker and Mr Hope (originally published in one of my favourite anthologies “Gaslight Gothic))
Pure Swank
A Bauble in Scandinavia.

The last mentioned story being one that gives Watson a mystery of his own. It’s complex, sweet, and delightful.

One thing I did really love about the anthology was the fact that each story had a separate introduction with interesting facts behind it. Including original publication, and in some cases, the genesis of the idea.

“The Manifestations of Sherlock Holmes” is a must read book for all Sherlock Holmes fans.

The Curious Cases of Sherlock Holmes Volume One

20 Jun

Stephen Herczeg is a prolific author of Sherlock Holmes short stories. “The Curious Cases of Sherlock Holmes Volume One” brings together eight of his excellent stories that have been previously published in anthologies by both MX Publishing and Belanger Books.

Embellished with interesting forwards by editors David Marcum and Derrick Belanger, this stories in the volume are all entertaining and interesting reads.

I had favourites. Of course I did. ‘The Curious Case of the Sleeper’ was charming, while ‘The Adventure of the Modern Guy Fawkes’ was pure Conan-Doyle. My absolute favourite, however, was ‘The Adventure of the Sugar Merchant’: the ending of which had the hair on the back of my neck standing on end.

I sat down last night and read every story, which tells you all you need to know about the readability of the book. Rare is the book that I pick up and do not put down until the last word has been read.

Highly recommended.

“The Curious Cases of Sherlock Holmes Volume One” is published by MX Publishing and available directly from them: https://mxpublishing.com/products/the-curious-cases-of-sherlock-holmes-volume-one?_pos=3&_sid=44f3a8efa&_ss=r

Sherlock Holmes of Baking Street

6 Apr

During lockdown last year, the wonderful Margie Deck had the idea of an anthology based on the play of words between Baker Street and Baking. Enter Nancy Holder and with the support of Belanger Books the idea became a reality.

“Sherlock Holmes of Baking Street” is not a cookbook. It is a book the theme of Sherlock Holmes and baking. It is a skillful mix of essays, fiction, and an interview. Included in the mix is a new short story from me: “Best Served Cold” which is not for those with a delicate stomach!

The anthology is now on Kickstarter, with some great packages for supporters. Why not pop over and check out the delicious menu of writers and snag yourself a great deal at the same time.

The Ghost Club

4 Apr

Welcome to the Ghost Club – where Arthur Conan Doyle, along with Bram Stoker, Henry James and their guests, invite you to a feast of Victorian tales of the uncanny and macabre.

“The Ghost Club” is written by noted horror writer William Meikle. Each story purports to be written by a prominent Victorian writer. All fourteen stories are seriously weird, always creepy, and, at times downright terrifying. Each one is a great read, but, of course, I have my favourites.

“The High Bungalow” (Rudyard Kipling) – a terrifying tale of ghosts and Freemasonry in the hills of the Punjab.

“The Immortal Memory” (Leo Tolstoy) – death and poetry at the court of Catherine the Great.

“The House of the Dead” (Bram Stoker) – this tale of death and spirits seriously made the hair on the back of my neck stand on end.

“Farside” (Herbert George Wells) – a tale of spirits and technology that left me more than a little unsettled.

“The Angry Ghost” (Oscar Wilde) – not a particularly frightening tale, but notable because William Meikle caught the flavour of Wilde’s style perfectly. It put me in mind of Wilde’s classic story “The Canterville Ghost”.

“The Scrimshaw Set” (Henry James) – this tale of the sea and death is chilling a macabre in equal measures.

“The Curious Affair on the Embankment” (Arthur Conan Doyle) – Inspector Lestrade deals with a missing persons case with a horrifying twist.

I cannot recommend this volume of stories highly enough. If you enjoy classic ghost stories you will love this book.

%d bloggers like this: