Tag Archives: Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

The Adventure of the Wordy Companion

20 Jul

“The Adventure of the Wordy Companion: An A-Z Guide to Sherlockian Phraseology” is written by Nicko Vaughan and published by MX Publishing.

As a person who loves both Sherlock Holmes and the intricacies of the English language, this book hit a number of spots.

Nicko Vaughan has waded through the Holmes canon selecting words and phrases that may not be a part of most people’s vocabularies these days, and set about providing an explanation for them.

Written with admirable conciseness and some considerable wit, the book is a must have for anyone new to the Holmes canon.

It is also a handy little reference guide for writers of Sherlock Holmes pastiche. Knowing what words Arthur Conan Doyle used helps give a feel of authenticity to pastiches. The book now has a permanent place in my reference library.

One thing I discovered as I browsed this excellent wee tome, is that most of the words are in my everyday vocabulary. I suppose this is what happens when you read Sherlock Holmes as a child. You end up with a somewhat archaic vocabulary as an adult.

This is a delightfully charming little book that I cannot recommend highly enough.

You can purchase your own copy directly from MX Publishing

Houdini and Conan Doyle

25 May

On the surface you really cannot imagine Harry Houdini and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle having much in common.

In “Houdini and Conan Doyle” Christopher Sandford digs deep to show just how alike the two men actually were. Right down to their stubborn refusal to see things from anyone else’s point of view. Which ultimately lead to them going from friends to rivals, one would almost be prepared to say, enemies, over Conan Doyle’s belief in spiritualism and Houdini’s disbelief in same.

The book tracks the ups and downs of both men’s lives, and those of their families. Speaking of which, I have come away for the book wanting to know more about Houdini’s wife, Bess. A truly amazing woman on a lot of levels.

This book holds great appeal to anyone interested in the history of spiritualism and stage magic, as well as the lives of two extraordinary men.

Highly recommended.

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