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Echoes of Sherlock Holmes: Stories Inspired by the Holmes Canon Hardcover – October 4, 2016
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“If you are a fan of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's consulting detective series, you owe it to yourself to read this collection. I found myself laughing with delight, and turning pages with trembling fingers, driven to see what came next as each new author spun a tale related, in some way, to Conan Doyle's immortal characters. The reader is sure to be amazed, delighted and entertained from one end of the book to the other.” (The Oklahoman)
“A most enjoyable and intriguing book” (The Washington Times)
“Every fan will find different reasons to cheer. And they'll all marvel at the inventive range of this salute to the greatest of all fictional detectives.” (Kirkus Reviews)
“A winner for fans of classic mysteries and a complete joy for Holmes fanatics.” (Bookreporter)
“A treasure.” (Newark Star-Ledger)
“This new anthology will obviously appeal to long-time fans of Holmes, as well as those readers who enjoyed the two earlier collections. If those previous collections passed you by, pick up this latest and experience how Holmes and Watson have influenced such a wide-ranging assortment of authors.” (Bookgasm)
“King and Klinger’s strong third Sherlockian anthology features 17 stories from leading authors who draw on Conan Doyle’s work for inspiration. The end result is a rich variety of entries.” (Publishers Weekly)
“Yet another outstanding collection of stories (following the widely acclaimed In the Company of Sherlock Holmes) paying homage to the great detective Sherlock Holmes. A powerhouse of a collection, sure to please even the most particular Sherlockian.” (River Heights Book Review)
About the Author
Laurie R. King is the New York Times bestselling author of numerous books, including the Mary Russell-Sherlock Holmes stories. She has won or been nominated for a multitude of prizes, has been chosen as the guest of honor at several crime conventions, and is probably the only writer to have both an Edgar Award and an honorary doctorate in theology. She was inducted into the Baker Street Irregulars in 2010.
Leslie S. Klinger is one of the world’s foremost authorities on Sherlock Holmes. He is the editor of the three-volume set The New Annotated Sherlock Holmes. The first two volumes, The Complete Short Stories, won the Edgar for “Best Critical/Biographical” work. He is also the editor of The New Annotated H. P. Lovecraft. Klinger is a member of the Baker Street Irregulars and lives in Malibu.
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Top Customer Reviews
Holmes on the Range by John Connolly - 5 stars
Despite having read this story before did I have no problem reading it again. But, then again, this is one of my favorite stories, written by one of my favorite authors. And, it's still just as funny as it was the first time I read it.
Irregular by Meg Gardiner - 2 stars
This story just didn't work that well for me: I found quite bland and when the suspect was revealed could I not for a moment place him, despite the stories short length. Yes, I read part of the story walking my cat, but honestly, I usually remember the characters better if they make an impression. I just didn't find the story intriguing
Where there is honey by Dana Cameron - 3 stars
A bit better than the previous story, but still not a favorite in the book. I found Dr. Watson a bit caddish in the book and it felt odd to think of him having had a relationship with Mrs. Hudson. However, he did seem to be smarter than he sometimes is portrayed and that I liked.
Before a Bohemian Scandal by Tasha Alexander - 3.5 stars
This story, however, is one that I like very much since it gives us the story about how Irene Adler came to meet the crown prince and how she ended up with the photo of them both that he so desperately wanted back. I especially liked how Irene is portrayed as not a cunning shrewd woman out to deceive the crown prince.
The Spiritualist by David Morrell - 3 stars
Interesting story with Sir. Arthur Conan Doyle getting a surprise visit that makes him question his belief of the spirit world.
Mrs. Hudson Investigates by Tony Lee & Bevis Musson - 1 star
A comic that tries to be funny, but felt more and less like a tiresome way of showing how clever Mrs. Hudson is. As a deeper story and not a comic perhaps it would have been better, but honestly, I doubt that since it was way too silly.
The Adventure of the Dancing Woman by Hank Phillippi Ryan - 3 stars
Ah, this story was actually quite amusing to read. I see great potentials with both the characters and the story. This would make a lovely cozy mystery series with "Holmes" & "Watson" solving crimes. I quite liked it, it was easygoing to read.
Raffa by Anne Perry - 3.5 stars
Such a sweet and heartwarming story. This I could see as a real book as well with an actor playing Sherlock Holmes solving real case beside his acting job. Pretty cool!
The Crown Jewel Affair by Michael Scott - 3 stars
Not bad at all, but this is a story that would have been better if it's been longer and more fleshed out since I quite liked the idea of a female thief/bordello madame.
Understudy in Scarlet by Hallie Ephron - 3.5 stars
I quite liked this story about an aging actress that thinks that she is getting the young Irene Adler part, but as it turns out is a bit wrong. Feels a bit like Murder she Wrote episode, but without Jessica Fletcher of course...
Martin X by Gary Philips - 2 stars
Not a story that made a big impression on me.
The Painted Smile by William Kent Krueger - 2 stars
This one also was a bit bland.
The First Mrs. Coulter by Catriona McPerson - 3 stars
This one at least had a clever ending that I at first missed but got when I re-read the ending to see what the point of it was.
The Case of the Speckled Trout by Deborah Crombie - 2 stars
Not my cup of tea. it seems that the best stories came first in this collection.
The Adventure of the Empty Grave by Jonathan Maberry - 2 stars
Started off interesting and then my interest was promptly lost.
Limited Resources by Denis Mina - 2 stars
Same as the story before. I liked the twist to the story, but I can't say I really cared that much about the whole story. Mostly because I couldn't see how any motive to murder, Well, of course, being a crazy murdered doesn't really mean that you have to have a motive other than being crazy...
The Adventure of the Extraordinary Rendition by Cory Doctorow - 1 star
DULL! The one story in the collection that I mostly skimmed just to get through.
When it comes to anthologies have I never as far as I know, read one where all the stories work for me. However, I had high hopes for this one and it started off great with Holmes on the Range by John Connolly a favorite story of mine, one that I read before and didn't mind reading again. Then, the stories varied quite a lot with some quite good, and some less interesting to read. For me, some were really interesting because I could see the potential for longer stories, or even series of stories. Other was even hard to read, despite being novellas and not novels.
I want to thank Pegasus Books for providing me with a free copy for an honest review!
The standard is remarkably high, both in terms of creativity and writing. Of course, the quality is variable and my own preferences meant that I enjoyed some of the stories more than others, but well over half the stories achieved 4 or 5 star status from me, and of the rest only a couple seriously disappointed. What I liked most was that, because the focus was on inspiration rather than pastiche, each story went off in directions that surprised and often delighted me. Some have based Holmes in the present day, or had their protagonist be inspired by Holmes and attempt to use his methods. Some have looked at stories in the original canon from a different angle. Some concentrate more on aspects of Conan Doyle's life. And some have really used the original stories as a springboard to leap off into imaginative worlds of their own. Here are a few of the ones I enjoyed most...
Holmes on the Range by John Connolly – this is the first story in the book and immediately gave me the feeling I was in for a treat. The Caxton Private Lending Library is a place where the characters of great books go when their authors die. (Isn't that already just such a brilliant idea?) But one day, something very odd happens – although Sir Arthur Conan Doyle is still very much alive, Holmes and Watson appear in the library following the events at Reichenbach Falls. They settle in quite happily and all is well, until ACD is persuaded to resurrect Holmes. What will happen when ACD dies? Will the library end up with another Holmes and Watson? Holmes sets his brilliant mind to finding a way out of this dilemma... A lovely conceit with lots of fun references to literature in general and the Holmes stories in particular, this is extremely well written and well told.
Before a Bohemian Scandal by Tasha Alexander – This tells the story of the Crown Prince of Bohemia and Irene Adler, and how she came to have the cabinet photograph that caused all the trouble. Very well told, and remains reasonably true to the spirit of the characters – Irene Adler showing all the spirit and intelligence that led Holmes to think of her as the woman.
The Spiritualist by David Morrell – It's the latter days of ACD's life. He has opened a spiritualist bookstore but can't convince a disbelieving world that it is possible to communicate with the dead. One night when he can't sleep, he is visited by the 'ghost' of Holmes, who takes him back through his life to try to work out why he has become so convinced of the truth of spiritualism. Very well written, and quite moving as we learn of the various tragedies in ACD's life – his father dying in an asylum, the early death of his beloved first wife, the death of his son in WW1. A great story.
Mrs Hudson Investigates by Tony Lee and Bevis Musson – Ha! Suddenly in the midst of all these written stories a fun little graphic story appears! After Reichenbach, Mrs Hudson and Irene Adler team up to foil the nefarious plans of Moriarty's housekeeper! The story is silly, but intentionally so, and the drawings add loads of humour. This is a nice little sorbet to cleanse the palate between courses.
Raffa by Anne Perry – this may be my favourite of all the stories, though it's a close call. Actor Marcus St Giles is the latest TV Holmes. One day he is approached by a distraught little girl who believes him to be the real thing. She tells him that her mother has been kidnapped and begs for his help. He takes her to the police, but they think he's pulling some kind of publicity stunt so refuse to believe him. So Marcus is forced to try to solve the case himself, with the help of his friend, the TV Watson. Great writing and quite touching in places, but with a humorous edge. The thing that makes it special is seeing Marcus' character develop as his growing feelings of responsibility towards the little girl overcome his rather spoiled, bored attitude at the beginning of the book.
Understudy in Scarlet by Hallie Ephron – An actress is invited to, she thinks, reprise her role as Irene Adler in a remake of the earlier film that is now a cult success. But when she arrives on set she discovers she has actually been cast as Mrs Hudson and is expected to act as a mentor to the beautiful younger actress cast as Irene. Swallowing her pride, she agrees. But it's not long before things begin to take a sinister turn... Lots of fun, well told and with plenty of Holmes' references, but making no attempt to pastiche.
As you can see, there's plenty of variety in the approach the contributors have taken. Although not every story is 5-star, the standard overall is excellent, and I'm sure will please any fan of the originals as much as it pleased me. 4½ stars for me, so rounded up.
NB This book was provided for review by the publisher, Pegasus Crime.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Echoes of Sherlock Holmes is a collection of short stories inspired by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's most enduring character,...Read more
I believe my favorite was Raffa by Anne Perry, partly because I could see something like it happening,...Read more