TITLE: The Canon of Sherlock Holmes
AUTHOR: Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
PUBLISHER: The Strand Magazine
Quote: “There is nothing more deceptive than an obvious fact.”
Overview: He is perhaps the best known detective, fictional or not, of all time. Books, films, television shows, plays and more have been written about Sherlock Holmes, derived from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s seemingly endless supply of stories. Holmes is a consulting detective, he works privately, and is known for his logical reasoning, proficiency, observational skills and use of science. He takes on all types of cases for any kind of client, from private citizens to Scotland Yard. This review takes into account (almost) all stories/novels/short story collections of Sherlock Holmes, including:
A Study in Scarlet
The Sign of the Four
The Hound of the Baskervilles
The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes
The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes
The Return of Sherlock Holmes
His Last Bow
Analysis: We all know him and his sidekick Dr. Watson. But I hadn’t read many of the books and decided I would read (almost) all of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s collection of Sherlock Holmes stories. First of all, the character of Sherlock Holmes was not exactly what I thought him to be. He is no stranger to injecting cocaine and morphine and takes no pleasure other than in a cold case to crack. He is a connoisseur of all things tobacco, a music lover and does not hesitate to shoot a few bullets in his living room. Most of the stories are told through Dr. Watson, his trusty companion who, through happenstance, meets Holmes upon returning from Afghanistan. This begins the unlikely friendship and working relationship between the two men, established in A Study in Scarlet. While I enjoyed all of these books, my favorites were A Study in Scarlet, The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes and The Hound of the Baskervilles. I found the entirety of these stories to have a Shakespearean aspect to them, in the sense that when you read Sherlock Holmes you find the derivation of other stories, phrases and pop culture references. Not that I even need to, but I highly recommend spending some time with Detective Holmes and Dr. Watson.
Conclusion: Don’t let Holmes find out you haven’t read these.