Book Review – Good Night, Mr. Holmes

  • Title: Good Night, Mr. Holmes
  • Author: Carole Nelson Douglas
  • Date Reviewed on GoodReads: 07/10/2015

Good Night, Mr. Holmes takes the familiar Sherlock Holmes short story, “A Scandal in Bohemia”, and turns it on it’s head, telling the story from Irene Adler’s point of view. It also expands the story into a full-length novel. The author gives Irene her own Watson, Penelope Huxleigh, whom Irene calls “Nell”. Nell narrates the story, and she is interesting in her own right. The daughter of a parson, when her father dies, she’s left on her own. Nell does OK, getting a job as a governess. However, when her family leaves England for the wider Empire she is left behind. She gets a very low-paying job in a London shop, room and board included, but is soon set-up by one of the other girls, and loses her job – accused of stealing.

Nell is bereft when she nearly literally runs in to Irene, who takes her under her wing. Irene is independent, free-spirited, and a struggling Opera singer and actress. Nell and Irene begin to share lodgings. Irene helps Nell get her revenge on the girl that got her sacked, then urges Nell to find better work. Nell takes a short course and learns how to type, and before long she’s making an acceptable living as a temporary typist.

Irene meanwhile, gives the occasional concert, and occasionally solves, “little problems”. The two are surviving, in the middle of a expensive, Victorian city – but by their own wits.

Irene gets a commission to find the “Zone of Diamonds” a mysteriously missing piece of the French crown jewels. Sherlock Holmes, who only appears on the periphery of the novel, is engaged for the same.

Irene investigates the Norton family, and eventually Nell gets a job as Godfrey Norton’s typist and clerk at the Temple bar (he’s a barrister).

Irene’s star as a Opera singer begins to rise, and she eventually heads to Milan, then Prague, and finally Bohemia (in the modern day Czech Republic), where she is romanced by the crown prince.

Nell meanwhile has her hands full, as Godfrey’s paralegal for all intents and purposes.

The nice thing about this novel, and what I really enjoyed about it, is that despite the description on the back – it is not a romance. This isn’t a story about Irene or even Nell meeting their future husband, Godfrey. Rather it’s the tale of two women surviving in harsh circumstances without compromising their own natures. And then there’s a mystery and missing jewels.

I quite enjoyed the book. The author is American, but the historical research rings true, though the occasional term is used that seems either out of context by time or country. Still, I liked it, and I’m glad it wasn’t a typical romantic suspense novel. I would like to read more in the series.

Recommended.

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Book Review – Who Killed Sherlock Holmes?

  • Title: Who Killed Sherlock Holmes?
  • Author: Paul Cornell
  • Date Reviewed on GoodReads: 12/06/2016

Who Killed Sherlock Holmes? is the third book in Paul Cornell’s Shadow Police series. Like it’s predecessors – it’s a very intense, but also somewhat violent and depressing read. Quill and his team are back – and everyone is dealing with some pretty heavy stuff from the previous two novels. Quill even suffers a breakdown from the knowledge he gained at the end of the previous book, The Severed Streets.

Who Killed Sherlock Holmes begins with a murder and (separately) an unusual bank robbery. The novel bit by bit ties together the various crimes that the Team investigates. The murders, even from the beginning, seem to be linked to the famous Sherlock Holmes stories – then the ghost of Holmes is murdered. But as the team investigate and try to prevent further murders – the situation becomes more and more complicated. Then Quill has his breakdown and begins to see Moriarty. However, considering Holmes himself was murdered – this novel doesn’t take the easy and predictable route to a conclusion.

The novel has many twists and turns – which I’m not going to spoil. It is much better to read this book and discover them for yourself.

The characterization in this book is awesome. Several of the characters – Ross, Rebecca Lofthouse, Costain, Sefton, and Quill, all go through major life-changing events. The characters have always made this series of unique crime novels for me – and this novel in particular adds and changes the characters’ experiences (and I cannot wait to read more!). We also, finally, find out more about the previous “Continuing Projects Team” and what happened to them.

I don’t want to spoil the story – but in general terms, the murders in the book are connected by the resemblance to murders in Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes stories – and the fact that the victims had at one point in their lives played Sherlock Holmes. London is also experiencing “Holmes-mania” because three different Sherlock Holmes productions are filming in London at the same time. But that is the background, and the plot – what makes this novel really work is the characters and their own, individual, dramas. Highly recommended!

Inventive Fan Re-Interpretations of the Sherlock Theme

http://www.bbcamerica.com/anglophenia/2015/01/5-inventive-versions-sherlock-theme/

I found this blog post yesterday – and I was astounded at the creativity and musical artistry of these videos – compiled into a BBCA Anglophenia blog post.  Click the link above to listen.  The Merlin crossover is probably my favorite, but I also really like the Indian version and the version played on bells.  Take a listen!

The Complete Sherlock Holmes (Granada)

  • Title:  The Complete Granada Television Series
  • Number of Discs:  12
  • Number of Episodes per Disc: 2-4
  • Original Network:  ITV
  • Production Company:  Granada
  • Cast:  Jeremy Brett, David Burke (first season), Edward Hardwicke (subsequent seasons)

This is my original review for The Complete Granada Television Series of Sherlock Holmes, starring Jeremy Brett as Holmes and, David Burke and Edward Hardwicke as Watson. I’ve edited it a bit to clean it up and fix some typos, but it’s pretty much the same as my Live Journal entry from 12 November 2008.

First, this is the BEST traditional version of Sherlock Holmes ever.  Jeremy Brett is THE perfect Holmes and I just love him.  Both David Burke and Edward Hardwicke play Doctor Watson as an intelligent man with a deep, caring, (non-romantic) love for his best friend, Holmes.  Brett plays Holmes as a brilliant man, with little to no social graces (He even attacks Watson when he must) – true to the books.  Holmes is the original geek.

One of the interesting things about the Granada series is that they did adaptations of the original Sir Arthur Conan Doyle stories, rather then thrusting Holmes into the modern day or at least “modern” stories.  Holmes is a Victorian and Edwardian hero – and he’s at his best in the original stories as written by Conan Doyle.
I also love both Watsons – quietly supporting Holmes, because he IS the Doctor’s friend.

Both of the Watsons are intelligent, smart – and the handover, from David Burke in “The Final Problem” to Hardwicke in “The Empty House” and all subsequent episodes is handled well.  Holmesian lore remarks it’s like 2-3 years from Holmes “death” to his resurrection – an older Watson fits.
I can’t even say one or the other actor’s my favorite, since Burke fits the early Holmes stories and Hardwicke fits the latter ones.

The set is gorgeously packaged in a double slip-case, green with gold embossing, with Holmes’s sayings embossed on the inner case.  The DVDs are packaged in two foldout cases, but at least the discs don’t overlap.  Also, the set is digitally remastered. The episodes look fantastic, much, much better than the original “Adventures of Sherlock Holmes” box set release of the first 13 episodes (only).  If you do have the original box sets of:  The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, The Return of Sherlock Holmes, The Casebook of Sherlock Holmes, The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes, and the Feature Film collection – then you already have the material in this set (there are only a couple of extra features unfortunately) – but the gorgeous, book-like case, and digital re-mastering might make you want to pick this up as well.

SH_DVD-Set

Sherlock Holmes (Brett) Photoset

bakerstreetbabes:

Holmes, you are such a jackass.

Art – Sherlock – The Maltese Sherlock

bakerstreetbabes:

mific:

Okay, so, I’m  going to see if I can post some of my new art and actually use this tumblr thing. Ha. Here’s some Sherlock, hot off the press. Noir, but I’m a sap for colour so there’s a coloured version as well.

woah there

Film noir Sherlock. Love it.