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“This second volume in Phil Growick’s project to commission new paintings as illustrations for new Sherlock Holmes stories is big and handsome, like the first. Seven of the thirteen stories have been published before, and you’ll recognise some of the authors who have contributed: Mark Mower, Denis O Smith, Tracy Revels, Mike Hogan, Tim Symonds, the ubiquitous David Marcum. The painters’ names and their work may be less familiar. There’s a remarkable variety of style and medium: each painting is unique, and as Mr Growick says, art is in the eye of the beholder. A share of the proceeds from...

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“A previously untold adventure of the “Great Hiatus”. Holmes, travelling in the guise of Professor Keevan Sigerson, is being pursued across Europe by Moriarty’s henchmen. Narrowly escaping death for the umpteenth time, he resolves to return to London, but is forced instead to take passage to New York. Seriously injured, he finds his way to Poughkeepsie and takes refuge in the Vassar Women’s College, where he is soon embroiled in a mystery. The pace of this novel is well-judged. From the outset it is a gripping and colourful adventure with lots of action. Clear respect for the Canon is demonstrated...

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“I believe this is Susan Knight’s first collection of stories about the investigative abilities of Sherlock Holmes’s esteemed housekeeper, Mrs Martha Hudson. And a triumph it is too. The book contains seven tales, all told with great clarity and affection. Not all are full-blown investigations, but each has its place in helping us to understand the character — and hitherto unrecognised talents — of dear Mrs Hudson. Throughout the volume we have occasional glimpses of “the doctor” and “Mr H”, but it is Mrs Hudson who rightly remains centre stage. This is an extremely humorous book that shines a light...

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“These eight stories are presented by our Watson’s nephew, Christopher Henry Watson MD, writing in 1948, and are to be accepted as “overlooked gems” from the older Watson’s collection. Mark Mower works hard to capture the elusive atmosphere of “1895 and all that”, and largely succeeds. The plots are varied and ingenious, and there are plenty of allusions and references to our beloved Canon. The final one of these stories is a particularly nice sequel to the affairs of a certain builder from Norwood. In conclusion, this book is a pleasing and entertaining read, and a worthy contribution to the...

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“The small town of Erin, Ohio seems to attract characterful residents and visitors, including Professor Sebastian McCabe, BSI (magician, crime-writer) and his brother-in-law, would-be crime-writer Jeff Cody, who serves, sometimes reluctantly, as Watson to his Holmes. Erin should be used to crime by now, and when complaints about “inappropriate behaviour” at St Benignus University are followed by two murders on campus, there are plenty of clues. Too many clues, in fact, and the killer seems to be invisible… Can McCabe’s expertise in magic help him to solve the case? I hailed the first of the McCabe & Cody mysteries as...

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“As in Parts VII and VIII, subtitled Eliminate the Impossible, contributors were instructed to honour Holmes’s statement: “The world is big enough for us. No ghosts need apply” — and to present him with a challenge that appears to be supernatural. The results are forty-nine atmospheric tales of darkness and dread; we may sometimes wonder whether even Sherlock Holmes can dispel the darkness and expose the truth, but of course he can and does. The authors include Mark Mower, Kelvin I Jones, Jayantika Ganguly, Paul D Gilbert, S.F. Bennett and David Marcum. There are radio scripts by Bert Coules, M.J....

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“Twenty years ago Jim French — writer, actor and producer — decided to redress the decline of good popular drama on American radio: he set up Imagination Theatre to create quality series and single plays. Sherlock Holmes was only a part of it, but a very important part, and it began with The Further Adventures, a series gratifyingly reminiscent of the days when listeners tuned in every week to hear Rathbone and Bruce as Holmes and Watson. The main difference is that IT’s Watson, played by Lawrence Albert, is not only brave and loyal, but intelligent. Jim French assembled a...

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“Dr Goldfarb surveys each of the sixty stories, lighting upon all sorts of points that others may not have considered. The style is friendly and informal, but always intelligent and thoughtful. Of “The Empty House”, for instance: “Watson’s bereavement, presumably the death of Mrs Watson, is almost a cheery note. The gesture towards grown-up living, marriage, domesticity — that can all be forgotten now. Watson and Holmes can be adventuring boys again, and will be.” Of “Lady Frances Carfax”: “Poor Watson. He’s feeling old and rheumatic, and look how Holmes treats him: Go to Lausanne, track down Lady Frances, keep...

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“Dr Vaughan says that she’s always written with young and “casual” readers in mind. Her new book should appeal to them; it certainly appeals to me. As a dedicated veteran reader, with a special interest in dramatic and comedic presentations of Holmes and Watson, I find Cut to: Baker Street a helpful reference source, alongside Alan Barnes’s Sherlock Holmes on Screen and others (including the invaluable IMDB). The text doesn’t include full credits, but it covers the essentials, and it’s complemented by Georgia Grace Weston’s witty drawings. Exceptionally useful is the inclusion of internet-only and computer game productions, though their...

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“As anyone who knows me can tell you, I’m a fanatic for the traditional and authentic and Canonical Sherlock Holmes. As a rule I avoid anything with parody, or that presents Holmes as anything but a hero. I simply ignore most of these Alternate Universe tales, while other I actively despise. (Hint: I’m referring to the BBC show “Sherlock”.) But there are a very few non-traditional versions that I acknowledge for being very well done, even if they aren’t about The True Sherlock Holmes. For instance, I truly enjoy watching and re-watching the film “Without a Clue” (1988) starring Michael...

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