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Beyond the City (Conan Doyle centennial series) Hardcover – May 1, 1982

3.6 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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Hardcover, May 1, 1982
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Arthur Conan Doyle was born in Edinburgh in 1859. Sent off to boarding school, he cut his teeth as a story-teller amusing his schoolmates with tales and writing letters home to his mother. He practiced medicine and, in 1900, volunteered as a medic in Africa during the Boer War, he was later knighted for his service. Doyle lost a son, two brothers in law, and two nephews to the Great War. He is remembered for the Sherlock Holmes stories and his novel, The Lost World.
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Product Details

  • Series: Conan Doyle centennial series
  • Hardcover: 177 pages
  • Publisher: Gaslight Pubns; First Edition edition (May 1, 1982)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0934468443
  • ISBN-13: 978-0934468442
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 5.8 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,992,374 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By C. Ebeling on February 15, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This 1893 novella from the creator of Sherlock Holmes is a reminder that Arthur Conan Doyle was a productive writer across many decades, who worked in genres other than detective fiction. This is a lightweight social comedy, easily read in a couple of hours. It really does not have quite enough going for it to attain classic status--Diary of a Nobody by the Grossmith brothers runs circles around it in wit, invention, style and what it divulges about Late Victorian middle class suburban society.

This is the story of four families that live in a new subdivision of the McMansion counterpart of suburban London in the 1890s. There are the elderly spinster sisters, stalwarts of Victorian manners, out of whose family land the subdivision was created; a widower doctor and his two marriageable daughters; a recently retired naval admiral, his wife and adult son; and another young man and his aunt, an attractive woman of a certain age, who stridently advocates suffrage, who is an adventurer and popular lecturer. There ensues some couplings--the daughters and the son and nephew and the doctor and the aunt, but then there are the necessary complications to true love. Two of the three couplings will survive, but all end up happy. The sisters provide amusing perspective of the goings on. Masterpiece Classic could take this and with the right cast and stylish approach make a winsome production.

This edition is print on demand. The cover is thick, glossy photo stock, the back cover has a minimal description, and the interior is laid out competently (not all PODs are, believe me) but is minimal, with no critical introduction to put this in context.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
One thing I love about my Kindle and rise of the e-books is that so many classics are free. Otherwise, I never would have bought this book. Actually, I never even heard of it. The freeness made it very appealing.

It is about a suburb of London where three families converge. The three have a variety of problems that only seem to happen in Victorian England--bad brother who scams family members for money and then does a physical attack for revenge, the 'new' game of tennis, the launch of women's rights, and other issues that is so "England".

It was a cute and short story but not one I would ever want to pay for! If you're reading the classics, stick with other English authors and if you want Doyle, then stick with his Holmes stories. Cute, but that's about it.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
“Beyond the City” is a pleasant little piece of light reading. Too long to be a short story, yet too short to be called a novel, I am reluctant to call it a “novella.” It is more like a drawing room play in narrative form, except that the setting is three recently built and newly purchased up-scale villas in Norwood, a developing suburb south of London. The time period is the 1890s. The setting of the three villas and a commonly-shared tennis court is called “The Wilderness” by the real estate developer. Villa #1 is occupied by retired 65-years-old Admiral Hay Denver, his wife of many years, and their adult son, Harold, who works from morning to night in the city on the stock exchange. Villa #2 is occupied by semi-retired 52-year-old Doctor Balthazar Walker, a widower who has come into a considerable inheritance from a grateful patient and prefers scientific research to routine medical practice; his household is completed by his two young daughters, Clara and Ida, both of marriageable age, and a housekeeper. As the story opens, the new owner is moving into Villa #3. The new owner is Mrs. Westmacott, a wealthy, educated, well-traveled, independent-minded widow who is very active in the Emancipation Guild which advocates for women's social, political and economic equality with men; Mrs. Westmacott is accompanied by her athletic, twenty-something nephew who thinks of himself as relatively stupid and fit only for physical labor. Across the road from The Wilderness is the cottage of the Misses Bertha and Monica Williams, somewhat elderly sisters whose father had originally owned the cottage and all surrounding farm land, including the former open field which has been developed into The Wilderness.Read more ›
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As a rule, I tend to like everything I've ever read of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's writings. I'm a huge fan of Sherlock Holmes, but a lot of what Doyle wrote was superior to the Sherlock stories. Beyond the City was okay - I did like it, but it wasn't one of his better pieces.
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