Sherlock Book Reviews - The Criminal World of Sherlock Holmes Volume 2

Posted by Steve Emecz on

Roger Johnson, editor, Sherlock Holmes Journal.

'...Not for the squeamish...' 

Mark Alberstat, editor, Canadian Holmes.

' all-round researcher and writer...' 

Ed Hoch (award winning short story writer)

'...I have never met Kelvin Jones, ...I am filled with admiration for him...even some non -Sherlockians will discover much of iinterest...there are new insights into the influences which brought about the world we know and love ...'


The Darker Side of Sherlock Holmes

Welcome to the criminal world or Sherlock Holmes volume two in which you find all manner of eccentric crimes bizarre criminals and, as Sherlock Holmes would have said himself,' cases of singular interest which are often outre in manner, Watson, and most difficult to explain'.

In the first volume of the series,  Kelvin I.Jones, the prolific and tireless investigator of the Sherlock Holmes stories provided followers of the unique publishing house, MX with a complete dossier of all the criminals who attempted to get the upper hand on Sherlock Holmes but failed to do so owing to his skill as a forensic investigator and his innate genius, as described in the Sherlock
Holmes Saga.

Those who know their Sherlock Holmes stories intimately will welcome this second volume which explores the world of forensic science as it was in the 1880s. The author is clearly a diligent researcher. In this second volume of the well-acclaimed series, we learn much about the darker and more disturbing side of Victorian Society as Sherlock Holmes would have discovered it. We read how the creator of Sherlock Holmes, himself a great student of criminology tried to solve the riddle of Jack the Ripper and had his own unique explanation for his

We get to walk around Whitechapel with the author, learning about the plight of London's prostitutes, not all of whom were impoverished; we get to understand the 19th century theories which helped police to understand the nature of the sexual psychopath. We get close to the madness of the convict Selden and discover what it was like to be inside a Victorian lunatic asylum. We understand at last who exactly were the Baker Street irregulars and why it was that Sherlock Holmes relied upon their goodwill and services; and we discover the shocking truth of how their vulnerable existence as street children led to the famous Cleveland Street scandal, in which Telegraph boys were discovered by police to be male prostitutes.

This book with over 60 Victorian photographs, and in-depth research into the often darker side of the Sherlock Holmes stories which so entertained their middle-class audiences when they were originally published, also helps us to understand the nature of Arthur Conan Doyle's own writing; and the book offers a definitive view of Doyle's treatment of women in the Sherlock Holmes stories.

And this is only the tip of the iceberg. There is much more here that will often entertain but also disturb the contemporary  Sherlock Holmes reader and the author creates a vivid picture of Victorian Society that frequently both shocks and appalls us.

Conan Doyle, who worked in Birmingham at the beginning of his career as a doctor and often witnessed distressing sights of cruelty, and exploitation, and impoverishment would have warned to this book. for the author also does his utmost to present to the reader what it was really like to be a consulting forensic detective in late 19th Century Victorian London, where violent crime was so rife that a gentleman was forced to carry a walking stick with him and the side alleys of London Town and its popular musicals halls teemed with prostitutes.

There is no doubt that if you read this series, which concludes in the spring of 2023, your understanding of the Sherlock Holmes stories will never be quite the same again.

The Criminal World of Sherlock Holmes Volumes 1 and 2 are available from this site and all good bookstores including;

Amazon USA     Amazon UK    Book Depository (free worldwide shipping)


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