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Sherlock Holmes and a Scandal in Bohemia (On the Case With Holmes and Watson) Paperback – November 1, 2010
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The On the Case with Holmes and Watson graphic-novel series opens with this spirited caper. The king of Bohemia hires the detective to locate a photograph of himself with the actress Irene Adler that he fears she will use to ruin his upcoming marriage to another woman. Holmes finds the photo all right but also finds a rare instance in which he gets truly outsmarted; forever after, he would admiringly refer to Adler as “the woman.” A few spurts of action liven up the panels, which are otherwise mostly occupied by talking faces, and although Rohrbach’s scratchy style is simplistic, it gives the characters plenty of personality (Holmes rolling his eyes as he sees through a client’s thin ruse says more about the detective than pages of exposition could). This story is an inspired choice for a series opener not just because it was the first Holmes short story published (following two novels) but also because it establishes right off the bat something that may surprise readers: a fallible Holmes. Grades 4-6. --Ian Chipman --This text refers to the Library Binding edition.
From the Back Cover
" Are you a detective?
Get on the case with Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson to solve an impossible mystery. See if you can figure out how Holmes pulls the facts together so quickly. Clues at the back of the book will reveal his process of reasoning¯and how he solved the crime.
" --This text refers to the Library Binding edition.
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This mystery book is set up as a graphic novel.
Boys and girls would like the action and suspense throughout the book. Clues at the back of the book help reveal Holmes's process of reasoning and how he solved the crime. There is a section in the back that gives websites and other information for further reading. The last page of the book tells a little about the author and illustrator.
I read this with my younger children and they liked that the book was set up as a graphic novel not that the story line didn't keep them interested they loved the book and the story. Who doesn't like Sherlock Holmes? This book is a new and exiting way to get kids to read and the author and illustrator have done a wonderful job.
First in the "On the case with Holmes and Watson" series of graphic novels from Lerner Publishing, under their Graphic Universe imprint, Sherlock Holmes and a Scandal in Bohemia attempts to turn what is perhaps the most well-known Sherlockian story (and also perhaps unfortunately, an atypical one) into a hip version for middle-grade readers.
What's wrong with the original stories? They are not written in some extinct language, after all. They remain accessible even for young readers who have a lifetime to read and re-read the sixty stories. Nor can an argument be made that these are sanitized for youngsters, or indeed that they need to be. If anything, these graphic novels are, well, more graphic. This one in particular shows many frames of Holmes smoking. In any case, Conan Doyle writes so descriptively that silly cartoon faces are unnecessary. Locking in a characterization may preclude a reader from fully appreciating the richness of the writing and that of the reader's imagination. Furthermore, this abridged version excises important details throughout the story. I just re-read the original and this graphic novelization is but a shallow shadow. Critical plot elements and wonderful dialogue are lost. If this keeps the memory green, it is a putrid shade indeed.