Tag Archives: Sherlock Holmes

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

Shadowwraith

20 Jan

“Shadowwraith” is the last of the Sun and Shadow books by Tracy Revels.

A ‘ghost’ leaving gifts for a distraught young woman starts off a terrifying case that rockets from Whitechapel to the famous crypts in Palermo, Sicily and sees Sherlock Holmes’s immortal soul in peril.

“Shadowwraith” is every bit as exciting and thrilling as the two previous books.

Even with the supernatural nature of the book, Holmes and Watson are very traditionally drawn and the friendship is strong. The supporting characters are well-drawn and interesting. Dr. Revels’s depiction of Mrs. Hudson is a delight.

As with the other books, historical figures abound. I can’t say whom without given too much away, but Dr. Revels’s gives life to characters long dead – in more ways than one!

I highly recommend this book.

You can buy the book (and the previous two) directly from MX Publishing

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Sherlock Holmes and the Christmas Demon

3 Jan

Any book that has the opening words: “Father Christmas! Halt right there!” is bound to be interesting.

In “Sherlock Holmes and the Christmas Demon”, by James Lovegrove, Eve Allerthorpe arrives to consult Holmes with a haunting tale of demons and death, leading to Holmes and Watson journeying to Yorkshire in search of the mysterious Christmas Demon – Black Thurrick.

The story is fast paced and interesting, with a cast of entertaining characters. A lively take on the house party trope.

James Lovegrove never fails to create characters that are rich with personality. His Holmes and Watson are also outstanding, with the friendship between the two men shining through strongly.

The ending has enough Christmas cheer to be delightful, without sticking to the palate like overcooked fudge.

Highly recommended.

Sherlock Holmes and the Molly-Boy Murders Goes Italian

20 Dec

My first book “Sherlock Holmes and the Molly-Boy Murders” will be published in an Italian language edition by Mondadori early in 2022.

I am really excited for this. When I first started writing the book, I did not expect it to be published, let alone published in a different language.

The title of the book is “I Delitti Della Notte” (The Crimes of the Night) with the tag “C’e un nuovo Squartatore per le vie di Londra” (There is a new Ripper on the streets of London).

The cover is exciting to look at. I cannot wait to hold a copy in my hand.

Thanks are due to MX Publishing for arranging this publication.

When I have an exact date of publication, I will share it.

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.

Memoirs from Mrs. Hudson’s Kitchen

11 Sep

“Memoirs from Mrs. Hudson’s Kitchen” is written by Wendy Heyman-Marsaw. The book comprises thoughts, recipes, & memoirs from the long-running column published in the Sherlockian journal ‘Canadian Holmes’.

This collection is publishing by MX Publishing and illustrated with lovely old advertisements.

The book talks about how the column started and how the book came about.

There are loads of interesting facts, not to mention some absolutely delicious recipes, several which I intend to at least attempt to cook.

This delightful little book is so interesting and so useful that it has earned a permanent place in my research library.

Highly recommended for all those with an interest in the world of Sherlock Holmes and in life during the Victorian period.

The book is available directly from MX Publishing: Memoirs from Mrs. Hudson’s Kitchen

Dramatic Moment of Fate: The Life of Sherlock Holmes in the Theatre

5 Sep

“Dramatic Moment of Fate: The Life of Sherlock Holmes in the Theatre” is written by Alexandra Kitty and published by MX Publishing. The book is a fascinating look at Sherlock Holmes on stage, ranging from William Gillette’s play through to modern plays by the likes of David MacGregor and Bert Coules.

The book is broken into chapters including such topics as Sherlock Holmes on Broadway and theatrical adaptations of ‘The Hound of the Baskervilles”.

Of particular interest to me was the look at the various characters and who has played them on stage.

The book is well researched with extensive source notes at the end of the book.

Alexandra Kitty has written an excellent, one might almost say definitive, book on a subject that is rarely covered in any depth.

Highly recommended to anyone interested in the history of Sherlock Holmes and also theatrical history. The book is available directly from MX Publishing: https://mxpublishing.com/products/the-dramatic-moment-of-fate-the-life-of-sherlock-holmes-in-the-theatre?_pos=1&_sid=4bc2282c1&_ss=r

My thanks to Steve Emecz at MX Publishing for the review copy.

Sherlock Holmes and the Adventure of the Beer Barons

29 Aug

“Sherlock Holmes and the Adventure of the Beer Barons” is written by Christopher James and publishhed by MX Publishing.

The delivery of a beer barrel containing the body of a man to 221b Baker Street is the catalyst for a new adventure for Sherlock Holmes and Dr John Watson. This one takes them to the beer capital of Great Britain – Burton-on-Trent.

The story is fast paced and exciting with a fiendish plot that has more twists and turns than a corkscrew.

One thing I also look for in a Sherlock Holmes pastiche is the relationship between Holmes and Watson. In this book the friendship is rock solid.

There are many interestly and lively characters, including Miss Gertie Cresswell, private detective. Miss Cresswell is wonderfully well rounded and I would love to see her in a book of her own.

All in all an extremely fun read. Highly recommended.

My thanks to MX Publishing for the review copy.

You can get your own copy directly from MX Publishing: https://mxpublishing.com/products/sherlock-holmes-and-the-adventure-of-the-beer-barons?_pos=1&_sid=c4f7ba5e9&_ss=r

Sherlock Holmes and the London Particular

13 Aug

“Sherlock Holmes and the London Particular” is part of the American Literati’ series by Daviel D. Victor and published by MX Publishing. The books see Holmes and Watson work with noted American writers of the period. The writer in this book is Richard Harding Davis, whom I freely admit I had not heard of.

Be that as it may, it is still an excellent book with the plot involving a stolen diamond necklace, two corpses and a Russian connection. A plot which made for an intriguing case and a ripping read.

For those that don’t know the London Particular was a type of thick, almost poisonous, fog that frequently filled London. It creates an atmospheric start to the story.

The characters are interesting and the denouement of the case suitably exciting.

Well worth a read. THe book is available directly from MX Publishing: https://mxpublishing.com/products/sherlock-holmes-and-the-london-particular?_pos=1&_sid=28d8159f9&_ss=r

The Peerless Peer

29 Jul

In “The Peerless Peer” by Philip Jose Farmer, Sherlock Holmes and John Watson are sent to Africa in WWI on a mission for Mycroft Holmes to aid against the war against Germany. On the way they meet up with the villain from “His Last Bow” – Baron Von Bork, and assorted characters from popular culture & literature, including Lord Greystoke aka Tarzan, the ‘peerless peer’ of the book’s title.

The problem with the “Peerless Peer” for me was that it was impossible to tell whether I was reading pastiche or parody. I felt Holmes and Watson were caricatures, rather than interpretations of the the characters. Both felt horribly wrong to me.

The book was originally published in 1974, and reprinted in 2011 by Titan Books as part of their “Further Adventures of Sherlock Holmes” series. I rather feel this is one adventure that really didn’t need to be retold. I am sure people will disagree with me, and that is fine. Someone else reading the book may love it, and I really hope they do. It is just that for me, this book did not work.

I’m afraid I was deeply disappointed with this book.

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