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Dust and Shadow: An Account of the Ripper Killings by Dr. John H. Watson Paperback – December 1, 2009
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Top Customer Reviews
The literature on the Ripper killings is also complex and lengthy. Numerous individuals have been nominated for the role and reasons for the abrupt end to the killings are also legion. Among the Sherlockian offerings, the number of ripper suspects approaches seventy five with almost as many explanations offered for the end to the killings. Although the Sherlockian works are often interesting, they offer little in the way of solid evidence from history for their resolutions of the questions left by the events. The true Ripper Literature tends toward the `Police Procedural' school and is often merely gross, with little entertainment value except to sensationalists.
In this book, one is taken by the Good Doctor along on an investigation by The Master into the world of monsters. This is not the world of Vampires and Ghosties; instead a sense of growing horror brings both the investigators and the reader to the awarenes of the monsters that dwell amongst us, the human monsters that may be our neighbors or our contemporaries.Read more ›
In "Dust and Shadow", the master detective Sherlock Holmes, and his able sidekick Dr John H Watson undertake to solve a series of gruesome murders committed in the Whitechapel district of London in 1888. Those familiar with the story of Jack the Ripper know that the number of victims attributed to the Ripper totaled five in all: Mary Ann "Polly" Nichols, Annie Chapman, Elizabeth "Long Liz" Stride, "Catherine Eddowes", and "Mary Jane Kelley". In this pastiche, the author attributes another earlier murder to the Ripper, that of Martha Tabram, who was murdered on Aug 7th 1888, a victim of multiple stab wounds [39 in all].
In the process of solving the murders and uncovering the killer's identity, Holmes himself falls victim to the press of the day, and his very reputation is put on the line as he has to deal with speculations that he himself may have something to do with the murders. Thus the stage is set for a true potboiler, with rich period details and complex characterizations that had me racing through the pages.
I am amazed that this is a debut novel by the author - she writes with flair and assurance, and through the authentic re-creation of Whitechapel in 1888, manages to transport readers into a world that seems altogether familiar.Read more ›
Lyndsay Faye does a very nice job in recreating the "Watsonian voice". Her narrative through Watson's eyes is spot-on with the canon stories. She does well also in her descriptions and dialogs. She might have over-done her attempt to create a deeper (or maybe more obvious) friendship between Holmes and Lestrade but what's the fun of playing with established charaters if you can't do a bit of creative interpreting?
My real complaint is that the story itself was rather bland. The idea of bringing Holmes and the Ripper together is not a new one and it has been better done. The history of Jack the Ripper is well-known and gives a pretty rigid framework to operate in. An author really only needs to be creative with the actual criminal. Who was the Ripper? Why did he commit such crimes? How would someone like Sherlock Holmes approach this case?
Ms. Faye does answer those questions but the whole thing kind of flopped for me. At first the inclusion of a female hired by Holmes to serve as an inside source seemed to be a good idea. But as the story progressed it actually got rather tedious and felt unnecessary. The emotions surrounding the case lacked, too. I got no sense of terror when she described the riots in Whitechapel. There was no real feeling of panic or desperation. And there were no brilliant deductions from Holmes himself. In the end the criminal himself and the reasons behind his behavior seemed a bit stretched and rather hurried.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I thought this was a very good book. At times I thought the author tried a little too hard to capture Conan Doyle's style of writing. Still a very good book though. Read morePublished 11 days ago by mdwright
I did so very much enjoyed the the story and the descriptive flowery language that i was used to convey the story. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Manuel Escobedo
Thoroughly enjoyed this novel, I would love to read more Sherlock Holmes stories for Ms. Faye! Nicely done!!!Published 1 month ago by 4everNana
I really enjoyed this story...Jack the Ripper and Sherlock Holmes, what's not to like?Published 2 months ago by Ann Mac
A fun read, and worthy tribute to Sir Conan Doyle and all those who have tried in the past 125 years to unmask The Ripper!Published 2 months ago by Corey W. Taylor
Lyndsay's first novel is an entertaining homage to Holmes and Watson. Dropping them into the Ripper mystery was brilliant.
In Dust and Shadow Lyndsay Faye has advanced the Sherlock Holmes pastiche. It never strikes a false note in a procedural that pits Sherlock Holmes against the most notorious serial... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Richard Schwindt
It was almost like reading an original Conan Doyle story. The characters, backgrounds, and writing style flow like the originals, and the story keeps you reading with suspense on... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Amazon Customer