Tag Archives: Sherlock Holmes

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.

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.

Warlock Holmes: A Study in Brimstone

29 Jan

“A Study in Brimstone” by G. S. Denning is less of a Sherlock Holmes parody (regardless of the re-writing of canon stories) and more of an alternate universe.

An extremely weird alternate universe.  One where Gregson is an ogre, Lestrade is a vampire, Mrs Hudson is a malignant dwarf…and Holmes shares his head with Moriarty and talks to demons.

And Watson?  Well, he’s much the same, except he is trying to teach Holmes deduction…and failing.

Funny, fast paced, and a delightful romp from start to finish.

The second book, “The Battle for Baskerville Hall” is due out in May.  I will be getting a copy as soon as I can.

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.

New Sherlock Holmes Xmas story

23 Sep

Another delicious new book of Sherlock Holmes stories to look forward to.

Mortal words

mx-anthology-xmas-adventuresI’m delighted to announce that I have another short story coming out this year. What’s more, it’s in a Sherlock Holmes anthology that is raising funds for a school housed in Arthur Conan Doyle’s old home, Undershaw.

The MX Book of New Sherlock Holmes Stories Part V: Christmas Adventures is the latest anthology from MX Publishing. The book is, as the name implies, the newest of the MX anthology series containing trraditional, canon-era adventures, with sale proceeds all going to support the Stepping Stones school for children with learning difficulties. (This means that I and my fellow writers have waived payment to ensure the maximum funds go to this project.)

The anthology is edited by well-known Holmesian writer, David Marcum, and its contributors include Wendy C. Fries (author of The Day They Met), Denis O. Smith and James Lovegrove, with forwards by Jonathan Kellerman and Steve Emecz, among others.

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The Game’s Afoot

21 Aug

Currently, at Madame Tussaud’s in London, an event of mystery, imagination and excitement is taking place after the doors close of an evening.  I refer to the interactive theatrical experience that is “The Game’s Afoot”.

I attended with a close friend, not really expecting very much.  I had a ball.  It was adrenaline fueled fun from start to finish.

I cannot go into the plot.  The Game’s Afoot people ask very nicely that you don’t over share on social media.  I can understand this, because if you gave away clues and solutions, then you take the fun away from others.

There are two scenarios, that play out on different nights, but the workings are much the same.  The attendee is a junior Scotland Yard detective. This is really a case for Sherlock Holmes, but he has gone missing, so Scotland Yards finest (!) must fill the gap.

Each person is given a notebook to jot down clues, a pencil, and a sheet of paper that has a map on one side, and photographs of the suspects on the other.  Inspector Gregson gives you the back ground, then you are let loose to examine the area, talk to suspects, and look for clues.  There is also one other thing.  Each person is given a clue, just for them, that was left for them by Sherlock Holmes.  I will say one thing.  The clue I was given set me on the path.

As well as the suspects and Gregson, Doctor Watson, Lestrade, and the coroner are around to ask questions of, and advise.  I did notice that as individuals hit on the right track, then the help from certain characters became slightly more overt.  Lestrade gave me the threads I needed to pull everything together.  But never outright.  A clue, which lead to another clue, etc.

One thing I will share: the crypt set.  It will have any Sherlock Holmes fan hysterical with laughter.  When you look at the names on the graves.  I nearly got sidetracked because I was so delighted with the crypt.

“The Game’s Afoot” is brilliant.  It’s almost like a live action version of Cluedo.  The plots are intricate, and there are clues, evidence, and red herrings EVERYWHERE.  And fiendishly difficult.  I think less than half of those there solved the case.

If you’re going to be in London between now and 30th September 2016, do yourself a favour and go.

Oh, and I solved the crime.

The Mammoth Book of the Adventures of Moriarty

3 Jul

An excellent book of short stories involving Sherlock Holmes arch enemy Professor James Moriarty, edited by Maxim Jakubowski.

Some stories also feature Colonel Sebastian Moran, Sherlock Holmes, John Watson, and Mycroft Holmes.

Some stories propose a reversal of canon where it is Moriarty who survives the Reichenbach Falls.  Moriarty as a child, as a young man, as a very old man.  The possibilities are endless, and also entertaining.

Unusually for an anthology, the story quality was high through out.

My favourite stories were by:
Priscilla Masters
Keith Moray
David Stuart Davies

All in all an excellent anthology.  Highly recommended.

The Adventure of the Colonial Boy

27 Jun

By now I’m sure everyone has realised that I read a lot of Sherlock Holmes pastiches.  Some are good, some are mediocre, and some are downright terrible.  Occasionally you get one that is bloody brilliant.

“The Adventure of the Colonial Boy” by Narrelle M. Harris is bloody brilliant!

Mourning both the death of Sherlock Holmes at the Reichenbach Falls, and the death of his wife Mary in childbirth, John Watson is shocked and angered to get a telegram purporting to be from Sherlock himself.  After a meeting with Mycroft Holmes, Watson finds himself bound for Melbourne, Australia, to help Sherlock Holmes track down Colonel Sebastian Moran.

The book is a wonderful adventure and crime story.  Published by the romance/erotica specialist Sherlock Holmes imprint Improbable Press, “The Adventure of the Colonial Boy” is also a romance.  So if two men loving each other is not for you, then do not read.  But if you chose not to read it, you will be denying yourself a truly fantastic reading experience.

Highly recommended.

MX Book of New Sherlock Holmes Stories Part II: 1890-1895

31 May

This book is part of a series of three anthologies edited last year by David Marcum.  Part II is a pretty good anthology.  The mix of stories is well balanced.  Most of them good, a few mediocre, but no really terrible ones.

For my money the most interesting stories were those written by

– Ann Margaret Lewis;
– Lyndsay Faye; and
– Wendy C. Fries (aka Atlin Merrick).

There was at least one sly BBC Sherlock reference tucked away inside a story.  I’ll let you look for it when you read the book.

The anthology is an excellent addition to the body of Sherlock Holmes pastiches.

Recommended for all lovers of Sherlock Holmes, and Victorian crime.

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