Tag Archives: David Stuart Davies

Further Adventures of Sherlock Holmes: The Ripper Legacy

13 Mar

David Stuart Davies’ latest edition to Titan’s Further Adventures of Sherlock Holmes series is a ripper, pun completely intended.

Sherlock Holmes is asked to investigate the kidnapping of a child.  This is no ordinary kidnapping, as he discovers when Mycroft becomes involved.

Some old enemies return and there are some new ones.  All well written and well rounded.

Sherlockians will recognize the plot as a “what if” extension of a fairly well known Sherlock Holmes movie from the late 1970s.

The relationship between Holmes and Watson is pure ACD.  No jarring notes here.

A worthwhile addition to any Sherlock Holmes collection.  Highly recommended.

Sherlock Holmes and the Shadow of the Rat

8 Feb

A novella by noted Sherlockian David Stuart Davies.  “The Shadow of the Rat” is a good little story using Arthur Conan Doyles’s hinted at, but, untold story of The Giant Rat of Sumatra.

The story rips along at a good pace.

The relationship between Holmes and Watson flows smoothly and feels right.  Mr Davies has an excellent grasp on the intricacies of literature’s greatest friendship.

The story has the added bonus of an appearance by Stamford, and, major supporting roles for Mycroft Holmes and Inspector Lestrade.

A wonderfully imaginative take on The Giant Rat of Sumatra.

Highly recommended.

The Big Book of Sherlock Holmes Stories

7 Feb

I felt that the editor, Otto Penzler, was too fixated on the writers rather than the stories, resulting in an extremely unbalanced mix.  Just because P. G. Wodehouse once wrote a Sherlock Holmes short story is no reason to include it, when, frankly, it’s not particularly readable.

I also felt that stories featuring detectives that are derivative of Holmes had no place in the book.  August Dereleth’s Solar Pons, for example.

There were extremely few outstanding stories, and some that were  appallingly bad, but the majority were mediocre.

Best stories by far were by:
Lyndsay Faye;
David Stuart Davies;
Stephen King; and
James C. Iraldi.

I don’t recommend this book to even to most dedicated Sherlockian geek, such as myself.  Far too much disappointment awaits.

The Scroll of the Dead

18 Sep

“The Scroll of the Dead” by David Stuart Davies was first published in 1998, and then republished in 2009 under Titan Books “Further Adventures of Sherlock Holmes” imprint.

At only 172 pages, “The Scroll of the Dead” is quite short, more a novella than a novel, but it is a great read.

I was reluctant to read it at first, as I had read “The Veiled Detective”, another of David Stuart Davies Sherlock Holmes novels, and had not enjoyed it.  “The Scroll of the Dead”, however, is totally different to “The Veiled Detective”.

A papyrus scroll is stolen from the British Museum and Scotland Yard asks Holmes for help.  Theft, murder and the obligatory damsel in distress all permeate the story making it fast paced and absorbing.

What I really love about “The Scroll of the Dead” is that David Stuart Davies has totally captured the warmth and strength of the friendship between Sherlock Holmes and John Watson.

I was a little sad that the Scotland Yard inspector was not one of the ones from the canon.  I do love Lestrade, Gregson and Jones.  I have a particular affection for Athelney Jones, as well as Lestrade.

I do not hesitate to recommend the book to all Sherlockians.

“The Scroll of the Dead” is a worthy addition to the annals of Sherlock Holmes and John Watson.

Starring Sherlock Holmes

19 Aug

“Starring Sherlock Holmes” is a gorgeous book by noted Sherlockian David Stuart Davies.  It covers all the appearances of the character on screen from the silent movie days until Matt Frewer’s outing as Holmes around 2004.

I do hope that David Stuart Davies does another revised version to include Benedict Cumberbatch’s Sherlock.

This is a coffee table book, but don’t automatically expect that information has been sacrificed for photographs.  Whilst there are heaps of gorgeous photos from all the screen appearances, there is also a lot a very interesting information about each incarnation of Sherlock Holmes and John Watson.

Naturally, much space is dedicated to the classic combinations of Basil Rathbone/Nigel Bruce, and Jeremy Brett/David Burke/Edward Hardwicke, but the lesser known pairings are all comprehensively covered.  Including many from non English speaking backgrounds.  Sherlock Holmes has proved to be very popular in Germany and Poland, with both countries producing their own movies and television versions.

I was delighted to be able to reacquaint myself with Christopher Plummer’s Holmes from the 1978 movie “Murder by Decree” which I had almost forgotten.  His Watson was the wonderful James Mason.  I remember really enjoying that movie, but as it was never released to video (that I am aware of) it dropped out of my personal Sherlockian database.

“Starring Sherlock Holmes” is a visual feast for Sherlockians and television and movie historians.  It also supplies some very interesting trivia.  I hadn’t known that Christopher Plummer is a cousin of Nigel Bruce, or that Jeremy Brett originally played Watson on stage, opposite Charlton Heston as Holmes.

Lots of wonderful snippets for the casual reader and the dedicated Sherlockian.

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