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The Untold Adventures of Sherlock Holmes Paperback – August 2, 2012
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My thanks to Steve and Timi at MX Publications for my review copy of this book.
The seven stories in this volume are cases never given to the public by Dr. Watson…
“The Adventure of the Poisoned Affair” involves adventurer Jackson Hardy’s sudden death. Although it is ruled a suicide and a note has been found, the man’s wife believes that he has been murdered. The neighbor and friend of the Hardys, a Mr. Timothy Strong is advising the widow to return to South Africa. As for the poison, Mr. Hardy was doing a study on poisons and almost everything in the house was poison; plants, animals, and minerals.
“The Adventure of the Yellow Handkerchief” involves several murders where a yellow handkerchief is the only clue left behind. Targeted are members of the Sleeman family. Years ago, Mr. Sleeman Sr. had put down a rebellion of the Thuggee and adopted an Indian girl. And the yellow handkerchief is the calling card of the Thuggee, a cult of fanatics from India...
“The Adventure of the Haunted Hotel” sends Holmes and Watson to Porlock in October of 1885. A local man, Mr. Bradson, has had strange things happen in the hotel his wife inherited and that they are remodeling as both their home and a business. Mrs. Bradson is said to be cursed…
“The Adventure of the Acquitted Client” takes place in the summer of 1887. Miss Tabitha O’Neil has been jailed and taken to court on the flimsy accusation that she was trying to bilk a cabdriver out of his fare. She had told him she had to go inside to get the money, but as she was a bit drunk, she was arrested by the police. She then was given a lawyer and has been appearing before a judge to have her record cleared…
“The Adventure of the St. Mary’s Murder” takes Holmes and Watson to Manchester. A young woman has been found murderer on the altar of St. Mary’s church with her wrists slit. And she makes the third woman to die in various area churches over several years…
“The Adventure of the Diamond Jubilee” finds Holmes and Watson working directly for Queen Victoria. Her carriage on the train exploded killing two guards. A third barely leaped to safety. The Queen had been warned and wasn’t on the train.
This story has the side issue of Holmes’ fear that an heir to Moriarty is pulling strings of crime anew. Suspicion falls on the Muslim Patriotic League (MPL,) who has a man very close to the Queen named Abdul Karim as a member…
“The Solved Problem” deals directly with the death of Mary Morstan. Due to the circumstances described, Watson was careful about saying who his second wife was or exactly where they lived…
All of the stories have elements that make them rather unique! I felt that Mr. Kuhns did a fair job of imitating Conan Doyle. There were minor discrepancies, but nothing major wrong with the stories. The book gets four stars!
Quoth the Raven…
All I can say is that these stories are based on fairly good ideas, so I think it depends on how able you are to overlook the myriad formatting, grammatical problems and spelling errors. As you think about it, which is more important to you? (There is no wrong answer to that question.) That's how I decided to buy the book in the first place, in spite of the mixed reviews. There just aren't enough pastiches in the traditional style any more for me. Too many pastiche authors try to change established facts, which I consider messing around with canon. (I don't want to read romance stories and I don't want to read about Holmes with some other, supposedly better, companion than Watson. There's just all too much of that kind of thing going on.)
This author is attempting to recreate as much of the ACD magic as he can. Despite the fact that it's a rather uneven attempt, there's still some stuff in this book that's very good, actually. I'm giving the book 3 stars -- 2 for the book itself, and 1 for the promise that the writer shows for the future.
like a self published manuscript and we only see MX Publishing mentioned in tiny print. Paragraphs were disjointed, lines were out of order and quotation marks not used as they should have been. Very confusing at times.
One example was when Holmes was to be identified the writer had "Sherlock Sherlock" instead of "Sherlock Holmes." I will keep this book with my many shelves of Sherlock Holmes material, but only for a good laugh. It is a
shame. If you are going to try to daw your reader into a seriously designed plot, don't cause them to groan over being poorly put together. I cannot believe this was proofed. So many authors will list several people who
read their work before it is published. Again, I have to believe this was self published as a legitimate publisher would soon be out of business. Three stars is probably too generous, however the author does show some
promise idea wise.
His descriptive writing and story lines are very good. The big drawback, because it is so distracting, is an overabundance of spelling and grammar errors. With a good editor I'm sure he has the potential of a 5 star writer. I look forward to his next work.