Tag Archives: John Watson

A Murmuring of Bees

9 Apr

“A Murmuring of Bees”, edited by Atlin Merrick, is the latest offering from Improbable Press, the gay romance/erotica Sherlock Holmes imprint.

The stories in this anthology revolve around bees, and, of course, Sherlock Holmes and John Watson.  As with any anthology, the stories go from not very good, to mediocre, to excellent.  And, of course, it’s always a matter of personal taste.  My favourite stories were:

“Tales from the Riverbank” by Kim Le Patourel;
“The Secret Diary of Dr John Watson MD” by Kerry Greenwood; and
“The Love of Apiology” by Amy L. Webb

Some stories are straight out romance, but others are most definitely erotica.  So if man on man sexual intercourse offends you, then do not read.

A pleasant way to while away an autumn afternoon.  Recommended.

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New release: A Murmuring of Bees — Mortal words

24 Nov

Improbable Press has a new anthology of Holmes/Watson romance stories, celebrating the celebrated sleuth Sherlock Holmes and his biographer, friend and (in these stories) lover John Watson. Some stories are sweet, others steamy. Many involve cases. Some are set in the Victorian era while others take place in 21st century London. In some they are […]

via New release: A Murmuring of Bees — Mortal words

A Study in Sable

16 Oct

In “A Study in Sable” by Mercedes Lackey, Sarah Lyon-White and Nan Killan, a medium and a mind reader attached to the White Lodge, are assigned by Lord Ashcroft to assist a gentleman who resides at 221 Baker Street.  Not Sherlock Holmes, but John Watson, Water Elemental Master, and his wife, Mary, an Air Elemental Master.  They handle the magical cases that Holmes refuses to touch.

But when one of John and the ladies cases intersects with one of Sherlock’s cases, then the great Sherlock Holmes gets a lesson in improbable versus impossible, and finds out that, really, very little is truly impossible.

Wonderfully written.  Holmes and Watson are not out of character.  Even as an Elemental Master, Watson is still Watson.  Solid and down to earth.

The story fairly bounces along.  You don’t need to be familiar with Mercedes’ “Elemental Masters” series, as she makes enough references for the general reader to grasp how the world works and who the characters are.  I had read a couple of the series years ago, but am now enthused to go and read them all.

I got “A Study in Sable” from my library, but I will now be sourcing a copy for my Sherlock Holmes collection.

Highly recommended to all lovers of urban fantasy, Victoriana, and Sherlock Holmes.

The Day They Met

19 Apr

Wendy C. Fries pondered the concept that the friendship between Sherlock Holmes and John Watson is something that would exist across time.  That it was something that was meant to be.  So she sat down and wrote 50 short stories of how these two friends could possibly meet which was published as “Sherlock Holmes and John Watson: The Day They Met”.

The ways of meeting are many, varied, and deeply entertaining.

From John Watson finding Sherlock Holmes asleep in a morgue drawer, to meeting whilst Watson performed first aid on Lestrade, the book is packed with wonderful, entertaining, and, above all, believable alternate meetings.

Wendy C. Fries is well known in the Sherlock fan fiction world as Atlin Merrick, so trust me, this lady can write!

“The Day They Met” is a  charming little book which should delight all Sherlockians of all ages.

The Night They Met

3 Apr

“Sherlock Holmes and John Watson: The Night They Met” is a collection of stories looking at the world’s greatest literary friendship through the eye of romance.

What if, not just content with being friends, Holmes and Watson were also a romantic pairing?  Atlin Merrick answers this question wonderfully with a number of excellent stories spanning three centuries.

There are crimes.  Oh yes, there are definitely crimes.  This is NOT Mills & Boon territory by any stretch of the imagination.

All of the stories are readable, not just by Johnlock shippers, but by Sherlock Holmes fans in general.

Atlin Merrick’s delightfully twisted sense of humour comes out to play with gorgeous lines like “…I think he clenched his arse cheeks so hard he did his prostate a mischief.”

“Sherlock Holmes and John Watson: The Night They Met” is the first publication from Improbable Press”, the new specialist publisher of Holmesian romance and erotica.  Do not be afraid, though, whilst the stories in this volume are on the romantic side, they are not erotica.  You could happily give this book to your maiden aunty to read without fear of reprisals.

Highly recommended.

Sherlock Special…an apology?

17 Mar

I was very interested yesterday to see that Steve Moffat has said that the Sherlock special is set entirely in Victorian London and is not a part of a three episode arc.  It is a stand alone story.

To me this is very interesting.  As I have said before, I am a Sherlock Holmes fan first, and a Sherlock fan second.  With that in mind, I have to tell you that I was deeply disappointed with series 3 of “Sherlock”.  I loved “The Empty Hearse”, but I disliked “The Sign of Three” and “His Last Vow” intensely.  Both episodes went too far off canon for my liking. Mary Morstan was NOT an assassin.  In season 2, Irene Adler as a dominatrix rather than an opera singer was clever.  Both professions are/were a little dodgy in their respective time periods.  But Mary Morstan as a ruthless killer for hire?  No, nay, NEVER!  Holmes disapproved of Watson’s marriage and did not attend the wedding.  He sure as shit didn’t arrange it or was best man.  Too far away from the originals for my comfort.  Way too far.  I am not the only Sherlockian to feel like this.

The only thing that saved “The Sign of Three” and “His Last Vow” was the friendship between Sherlock and John.  That was as strong as ever, and as it is the core of the canon, it went some way to redeeming both episodes in my eyes.  Not enough that I will willing subject myself to watching them again, however.

In my opinion “Sherlock” is starting to head into “Elementary” territory, ie, using the character names, but the characters don’t have the spirit of the originals.  Nothing more than a drama using well known characters, but not respecting the spirit of those characters.

I think Steve Moffat and Mark Gatiss are aware that they are now treading in dangerous waters.  Waters that could rise up and swallow them.

Hence the special.  A purely Victorian special. Something to make the hearts of all Sherlockians beat faster with excitement.  Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman bringing their special on screen chemistry as Sherlock and John to the more traditional Holmes and Watson.  From what we have seen from the setlock photographs, it is obvious that the special is something of a tip of the hat to past incarnations of the immortal duo.  Several shots I have seen recreate scenes from Granada Televisions wonderful adaptations staring Jeremy Brett and David Burke/Edward Hardwicke.  Other photos I have seen made me think of “The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes”, the Billy WIlder film staring Robert Stephens and Colin Blakely that was one of the inspirations for “Sherlock”.  Indeed, the Mycroft of “Sherlock” is lifted lock, stock, and a cellar full of barrels, from the movie.

The special is a return to the roots of “Sherlock”.  To the stories of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle that captured the imagination of generations.

In light of this, I am wondering if the special is a form of apology.  An apology to the Sherlockians who came to “Sherlock” looking for a modern take on the icons, and were horrified by the direction season 3 took.

I can honestly say that I am looking forward more to the special than I am to season 4.

A Study in Pink – A Few More Thoughts

4 Jan

Here in Australia the ABC (Australian Broadcasting Commission – equivalent to the BBC) has picked up the first two seasons of “Sherlock” to show on repeat.  Even though I have them all on dvd the temptation to watch without interruptions from commercials was too good to pass by, so I settled down last night to watch “A Study in Pink” – AGAIN.

I have lost count of how many times I have watched this episode.  It remains one of my favourites, and every time I watch it, I discover something new.  I have a few thoughts to share on the subject.

I have blogged previously on the episode, in case you missed it.  https://margysmusings.wordpress.com/2013/04/21/a-study-in-pink/

John’s therapist writes that he has “trust issues” at the start of the episode.  If John has trust issues, how come he offers the use of his mobile phone to a complete stranger, to whit, one Sherlock Holmes?  The scene also raises another pertinent question.  How the hell did Ella qualify as a bloody therapist as she’s so damn incompetent?

Just how did Detective Inspector Lestrade know where Sherlock was living?  He’d just moved in that day!  Is this a continuity error…. or early evidence of Lestrade being handled by Mycroft?  There is some interesting fan fiction in there somewhere, and I DON’T mean Mystrade.

The big question.  Did Sherlock and John  save the life of the man from Santa Monica when they chased Jeff Hope’s cab, on foot, through London?  Was the mystery American to have been victim number 5?  Hope couldn’t kill him after that…there were witnesses that the man had been in his cab.

Every time I watch “A Study In Pink” I find something new.  A line I’ve missed, or in these instances, questions to be asked.

Still think the man from Santa Monica is the biggest question of all.

Sherlock: Chronicles

14 Dec

“Sherlock: Chronicles” by Steve Tribe is an in depth guide to seasons 1 to 3 of the BBC production “Sherlock” starring Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman.

However, the book isn’t simply for fans of the show.  Yes, it is aimed at the show’s fan base, but it is also a book for Sherlock Holmes aficionados.

This book has photographs of earlier portrayals of Holmes and Watson, such as Brett & Hardwicke, and Rathbone & Bruce.  There are also reproductions of a couple of Sidney Paget’s original illustrations.  For this Sherlock Holmes fan, the inclusion of photos from the 1970s movie “The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes” starring Robert Stephens and Colin Blakely was the icing on the cake.

There are many excellent photos, a lot of them behind the scenes, which delighted the heart of this backroom geek girl.

There are deleted scenes from the episodes, and also, for the Sherlock Holmes fans, wonderful comparisons of scenes from the script juxtaposed with the original pieces from the stories on which the quoted scene was based.

The book is also threaded through with quotes and interviews with Benedict Cumberbatch, Martin Freeman, Mark Gatiss, Steve Moffat, Sue Vertue, Loo Brealey, Arwel Wyn Jones, et al.

The section on costuming was very interesting.  I was unaware just how much input both Benedict and Martin had had into Sherlock and John’s respective wardrobes.

Steve Tribe has created a book that will delight the fan girls, hold the interest of Sherlock Holmes fans, and absorb the geeks who love to know how things are done on television.  And trust me, there is a lot of “How We Did This Stuff”.  I found how they did the tube train scenes in “The Empty Hearse” particularly fascinating.

Highly recommended.

Sherlock Holmes and the Frightened Golfer

26 Nov

“Sherlock Holmes and the Frightened Golfer” is a pastiche written by J. M. Gregson. The publisher of this book, Endeavour Press, drew my attention to the the Kindle edition when it was being given away on Amazon.  So I suppose you could say I received a copy from the publisher. ”

Sherlock Holmes and the Frightened Golfer” is a short novel, slightly longer than a novella.  However, in this case, short and sweet does the trick. The plot revolves around the secretary of the Blackheath golf course who has been getting threatening messages, which he ignores, until the sender of the messages turns to violence.

Nice little plot and a relatively fast paced read. Holmes and Watson are perfectly in character.  I could easily have believed I was reading a long lost Arthur Conan Doyle story, and you don’t get higher praise than that from me.

There are plenty of clues that will allow you to work out whodunnit.  I am pleased to say I was able to put all the pieces together and solve the case before the denouement at the end of the story. The Kindle edition as has a couple of sample chapters of a Holmes/Watson story from another author at the end, which I will be hunting down in due course.

I recommend “Sherlock Holmes and the Frightened Golfer” to any Sherlock Holmes fans, those who like Victorian crime, and golf enthusiasts.

Happy Little Sherlockian

25 Nov

I am a happy little Sherlockian this morning.

Yesterday I arrived home from work to discover that I had a copy of the “Sherlock Chronicles” by Steve Tribe that the lovely Rebecca in England had purchased and sent to me.

I haven’t started to read it (yet), but did sit down to have a little flick through it.  And was immediately captivated by the photographs.  So many behind the scenes photos that I hadn’t seen before, as well as many gorgeous photos of Benedict Cumberbatch, Martin Freeman, and the others.  And not just Sherlock photos.  I spotted some from other things they had been in such as a photo of Benedict from “Frankenstein”.

The other thing I noticed is that the book also has photos of William Gillette, Jeremy Brett, and Robert Stephens, and copies of Sidney Paget’s original illustrations.  So the book promises to be a feast for Sherlockians, not just Sherlock fans.

As I keep having to point out to people, I’m a Sherlock Holmes fan first; a Sherlock fan second.  I adore Benedict and Martin’s portrayals, for me they are the closest to my ideal of, to me, literature’s greatest friendship.  But I will always love Robert Stephens’ Holmes (my first screen Holmes) and I adored Edward Hardwicke’s Watson.

Then this morning I came online to discover Twitter all abuzz with the news of the read through for the Sherlock special.

Words cannot express my delight at the photo of Benedict and Martin dressed as traditional Holmes and Watson that I also found all over Twitter.

Sue Vertue said the photo shows them as they will appear in the special, which raises some VERY interesting questions.  Is the special going to be divorced from the series and be set in the Victorian period with Benedict and Martin playing their character’s great-great-great grandfathers or uncles?

Is it a dream sequence?  Sherlock strung out on drugs dreaming of a time past?

A friend of mine, Angela, suggested the possibility of a Dickensian “Christmas Carol” type thing with Victorian Sherlock and John as the Ghosts of Christmas Past.

Or is it something as prosaic as the two men attending a masquerade party?

Whatever the outcome, my Sherlockian cup is overflowing… mostly with drool.

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