Category Archives: Sherlock Holmes

Sherlock Holmes-The Complete Novels & Short Stories-Vol II

Dust your mufflers, galoshes and get ready to visit Baker Street. Here I am again with the second volume. The review of the first volume brought back a couple of mails and a comment from a fellow blogger(thanks Lavanya-http://lavanyakarthik.wordpress.com), encouraging and interesting in content. Thank you all, I too am a die hard Holmes fan.

The second volume consists of two novels and twenty short stories in two categories under His Last Bow and The Case Book of Sherlock Holmes. The novels are a treat to the most ardent fan of fiction-The Hound of the Baskervilles and The Valley of Fear.

I was introduced to Holmes as I told earlier by my uncle years back. I collected the present volumes and they accompanied me on my first visit abroad to the US. It was while traveling the 20 hours in the plane that I read the second volume. And could not but help admitting that the second volume was even more fantastic from the first.

Such was my passion that in my eighth grade in school, we had The Hound of the Baskervilles as our non-detailed portion. My enthusiasm made my English teacher grant me the opportunity of handling the entire non-detail part. What a splendid time it was, enthralling my first ever class with the story, it was a runaway hit.

The Valley of Fear must be the most copied plot in Hollywood and Kollywood/Tollywood.  The sub-plot involving the brave deeds of Pinkerton’s ‘Birdy’ Edwards as he infiltrates the deadly gang of criminals as McMurdo and the subsequent reactions in a later part of his old life is one which is hard to put down. Even Holmes is put to underplay in Edward’s adventures.

The rest of the stories are a class in themselves. The curious parcels in The Adventure of the Cardboard Box, The disappearance of the Bruce Parrington Plans with the added delight of Mycroft Holmes’ presence, The horrific effect that The Devil’s Foot produces in it’s victims, the case of the dying detective where Holmes convinces Watson to embark on an adventure alone, pulling the strings in the background, etc.

Indeed, no words needed. Just enjoy these precious volumes and relax as Holmes takes care of the rest!

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Sherlock Holmes:The complete novels & short stories-Vol I

Bio-Data

Name: Mr.Sherlock Holmes

Height: 6ft+

Known Relatives: Mr.Mycroft Holmes(brother)

Knowledge of Literature: Nil

Knowledge of Philosophy: Nil

Knowledge of Astronomy: Nil

Knowledge of Politics: Feeble

Knowledge of Botany: Variable

Knowledge of Practical Gardening: Nil

Knowledge of Geology: Practical, but limited

Knowledge of Chemistry: Profound

Knowledge of Anatomy: Accurate but unsystematic

Knowledge of Sensational Literature: Immense

Other Facts:

Well up in: Belladonna, opium and poisons

Is a walking dictionary of crime. Practical knowledge of British Law, criminology

Plays the violin well

An expert singlestick player, marksman, boxer

I was introduced to Mr. Sherlock Holmes and Dr.John.H.Watson in 1993 by my uncle who gifted me a collection of six Reader’s Digest classics book from U.S. One of them was The Selected Short Stories of Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle. I immediately fell in love with Holmes.

My further exploits led me to the present volume and the subsequent volume II which I will review later. The present volume contains two novels and thirty-six short stories under the headings of The Adventures, The Memoirs and The Return of Sherlock Holmes.

For readers who are familiar with Holmes and Watson, this will be a ruse to dust off their old copies and have another read. For those who are yet to be acquainted with Mr. Sherlock Holmes, he is the most famous fictitious detective created (second only to Agatha’s Hercule Poirot) by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

Holmes has remarkable powers of observation and deduction and he puts them into use at various instances to solve crimes and astonish his friend and admirer Watson. The very first meeting in the medical lab between  Holmes and Watson is an example of Holmes’ remarkable powers as he coolly remarks on Watson’s background even before being introduced to him.

The two novels in this volume are A Study in Scarlet where Holmes and Watson embark on their adventures for the first time together and the sinister Sign of Four trailing a lost treasure.

The rest of the stories are Holmes’ various exploits. Holmes’ clientele ranges from various classes of people from the lowest(a railway porter) to the highest (the king of Bohemia in  A Scandal in Bohemia). Holmes incidentally ‘dies’ in The Final Problem in a deadly match with his arch rival Professor Moriaty but comes alive in The Adventure of the Empty House to delight us.

You will also get to meet Sherlock Holmes’ eccentric and even highly talented brother Mycroft Holmes in The Adventure of the Greek Interpreter. Marvel at Mycroft’s queer abilities and diplomacy, and what not.

This is a treasure for book lovers, fiction lovers, literature readers.

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