Week 33 - Thank Holmes It's Friday 2022
We have a brand new audiobook this week and three more so a total of four free audiobooks for our fans.
We'd also like up to five volunteers who are on TikTok to reach out to us to review paperbacks with short videos. #booktok is becoming a very popular way to review books so if you are active on TikTok, or would like to be and get free MX paperbacks sent to you for review please get in touch.
This weeks news:
2. Free Audiobooks
3. Audio App
4. New Books
There are two Kickstarters left running this week...
2. Free Audiobooks
A choice of existing books this week. Please do let us know which of the books you'd like...
Please remember to post a rating of the book and a short review if possible as reviews and ratings go to help fund our free audiobook programme.
Please use the contact us form, quote #THIF 139 and let us know which country you are from.
It's Christmas eve at 221B Baker Street. On the stroke of midnight, a delivery arrives addressed to Sherlock Holmes. The message is a cryptogram which reveals itself to be so obtuse that it has the famous consulting detective baffled. Holmes becomes so obsessed with revealing the secret of the cypher that Watson fears for his well-being in refusing to eat or sleep. Holmes can only deduce that time is of the essence, and that a means of deciphering must be discovered which has never before been employed. Watson wonders what new adventure will emerge, should the puzzle be unraveled. Adaptation of the stage play of the same name.
Reluctantly, Sherlock Holmes agrees to assist Inspector Lestrade who is being hounded by an obnoxious nobleman whose jewel-encrusted dagger has gone missing. However, what Holmes initially believes to be a simple theft turns out instead to be his first encounter with a master criminal, who is as ruthless as he is brilliant and whom Watson dubs "The Merchant of Menace".
Soon, Holmes finds himself matching wits with a man who will steal anything - if the price is right. Moreover, this thief will go to any lengths, including blackmail and murder, to achieve his desired goal.
In the summer of 2016, retired broadcaster Paul Ashton made an astounding discovery at a car boot sale in Sussex. He found a copy of Sherlock Holmes's Practical Handbook of Bee Culture, and bought it for £2. No other copy of this legendary volume - the only book Holmes wrote - has ever come to light.
The Handbook is the journal kept by Holmes from 1904 to 1912. 1904 was the year he retired from active investigation and moved to a farmhouse in East Dean. In 1912 he came out of retirement and left East Dean in order to outwit the German spy network in Britain on the eve of World War I.
The journal is, of course, principally the record of his bee-keeping activities, but Holmes has also included a wealth of astonishing information - some of it highly indiscreet.
We like to support interesting memoirs at MX and one of the most fascinating we have done is Under the Red Blanket.
Under The Red Blanket is a memoir of a Swedish-American family living in the remote area of North East India among headhunting tribes. The book opens with the father of Bea, Bengt Anderson, immigrating to the United States from Sweden on the advice of his aunt Hedda, who worked as a cook for the Roosevelt family at their home in Hyde Park, New York. He later moved to Minnesota, where he met and married Edna Michaelson. Soon after, they left the US to spend 29 years living in India. The story relates the trials and tribulations of life in the jungle. It includes stories of life under the British Raj, World War II, and the Japanese invasion into India. The book also describes the horrors witnessed during the separation of India and Pakistan in 1947.
All our print books are on our site and you can see all our audiobooks through this audible link...(MX Audio on Audible).
3. Audio App
The MX Audio Collection continues to grow and confirmed interviews with Lee Child, Nicholas Meyer, Nancy Springer, Bonnie MacBird and Scott and Burt from IHOSE. Read more here... (MX App)
You can get free access to the app if you are a member of our Sherlock Holmes Book Club which is a great way to build you collection monthly.
4. New Books
As many of you will know, one of the benefits of subscribing to our newsletter is to know about, and get access to, new Sherlock Holmes books months ahead of the public. Here are some great new books you can grab now whilst others wait.....
Fans loved Mike's first collection of illustrations, even though the first book was dominated by Sidney Paget. The second volume is even larger at 456 pages and over 400 images. The books are very large casebound hardcovers.
The Undiscovered Archives of Sherlock Holmes (24th March)
The author of these “history mysteries” is John Lawrence, a University of California-trained history Ph.D. who spent nearly 40 years as a top staff person in the U.S. House of Representatives, the last 8 as chief of staff to Speaker Nancy Pelosi. The author uses his professional training to blend historical fact with Holmesian embellishments that produce unique stories any devotee of The Canon will enjoy. These are all traditional-style pastiches published in various anthologies from 2015 – 2020, including the MX Book of New Sherlock Holmes Stories.
Sherlock Cat and The Missing Mousie (31st March)
We've been itching to make this gorgeous book available and here it finally is. Written and illustrated by friends Heather and Amanda this is a brilliant book for young children. It's also featuring in a Kickstarter this week.... (click here)
“From now on, I am going to be Sherlock Holmes, the World’s Greatest Cat Detective.” With those words, my friend Spot decided he would become a crime-solving kitty.
“And you, of course,” he said dramatically. “Will be my faithful friend, Dr. John Watson. The one who writes down all of my adventures and shares them with the world! We’ll be famous! Everyone will know the name ‘Sherlock Holmes, The World’s Greatest Cat Detective!’”
“Mm hmm,” I agreed. I wasn’t too worried. I was sure that, by morning, Spot would have forgotten all about becoming Sherlock Holmes. Boy, oh boy, was I wrong.
The Uncollected Cases of Sherlock Holmes (7th April)
The Uncollected Cases of Sherlock Holmes presents eight new stories about Holmes which set the great detective against the background of Victorian England, an era of enormous progress, in science, transport, and medicine but which also witnessed a surge in urban poverty, prostitution and imperial adventurism. Each of the stories in this collection engages with an aspect of this background. In ‘The Sicilian Defence’, Holmes comes to the aid of a disgraced army veteran who has fallen in love with a Sudanese woman and incurred the wrath of her father, whilst in ‘The Archaeopterx’ Holmes has to recover an important fossil which has been stolen from the Natural History Museum. In ‘The Missing Heir’ Holmes is asked to find the heir to a great fortune, considered by his family to be mentally unstable, and in ‘The Dunwich Ghost’ he investigates the plight of an old army colleague of Watson’s who is haunted by the ghost of his dead wife.
The Holmes who emerges from these stories justifies the description of him by Watson as the ‘best and wisest of men.’ Whether investigating a gang of forgers, securing justice for a murdered prostitute or facing a Russian spy we see his ferocious intelligence alongside a strong humanitarian bias. Despite his idiosyncracies, his solitary temperament, his melancholia and addiction to cocaine, he is both a man of his time and a man for our time.
The author of this volume is Geoffrey Finch, an Associate Lecturer in English Language at the Open University. Geoffrey has taught at Universities in Africa, New Zealand and the UK. He lives in Greater London with his wife and their cat, Humphrey, who makes a guest appearance in the fifth story, ‘The Cathedral Cat’.
New Cases of Sherlock Holmes (14th April)
An unidentified woman is found dead with a set of false teeth mysteriously gripped in her hand. A young tutor finds himself accused of a bizarre art theft. A Russian refugee in hiding is helped by Watson’s wife Mary, and now Mary has disappeared.
In these ten stories, Shaw reveals to us a mercurial and complex Holmes, a conflicted Watson, and a relationship between the two that is nuanced and psychologically rich. Here is a Sherlock Holmes you will welcome: true to form yet renewed; by turns infuriating and charming.
Shaw suggests issues that resonate with a contemporary reader while deftly avoiding piety. In this debut collection, you will discover wry humour, Victorian pathos and of course, hansom cabs in a London fog.
The Additional Investigations of Sherlock Holmes (21st April)
One look at Arthur Hall's profile on this site (click here) and you'll see that Arthur Hall is one of the most prolific Holmes writers of the last decade with six novels (a seventh coming soon) and several short story collections. This book contains seven more of his short stories.
Two kings, a model, a traitor, two wombats, two poets, an accountant, more lobbyists than you can count, three titans of business, two artists, a pawnbroker…and Sherlock Holmes.
Orlando Pearson presents them all in the latest addition to the acclaimed Redacted Sherlock Holmes series.
- The Poet and his Muse – a life-changing discovery in Highgate Cemetery;
- A Study in Black and Orange – the race to find a missing royal artefact;
- The Cherry-Tree and the Comma – poetry, treason, and blackmail;
- M Harris Smith – the woman with whom Holmes had a professional association; and
- A Story with a Health-Warning – death, spirits, and taxes.
An irresistible blend of Holmestry and history.
Mrs. Hudson and The Wild West (15th May)
When Buffalo Bill Cody's horse is stolen, the star of the world's foremost wild west show travels to Baker Street to consult the star of the world's foremost consulting detective agency. Like the many before him, Colonel Cody takes Sherlock Holmes to be that star. The true sage of 221B Baker Street, who also serves as its landlady, takes control of the situation, and finds both the purloined animal and the two children who had taken the horse for a joy ride 1903 style. When their father is murdered weeks later, the children fear they will be blamed because of their quarrel with him. They run away to join the wild west show leading Colonel Cody to make a return visit to Baker Street—this time with the two children in tow, and to enlist Holmes in the search for a murderer.
Mrs. Hudson, will, of course, once again take charge, once again without acknowledgement of her contribution, once again maintaining the fiction of Sherlock Holmes's leadership, an essential pretense in the male dominated world of Victorian England. As Mrs. Hudson and her colleagues work to discover the murderer, they will find themselves having to counter an anti-Indian bigotry that places at risk the marriage of friends of Mrs. Hudson's from the wild west show, and Mrs. Hudson's very life. With the help of her two young horse thieves, now happily rehabilitated, Mrs. Hudson may yet find the way to a just and rewarding outcome.
An Irregular Life (19th May)
“And now comes a man who thinks like, looks like, talks like and is as close to the real Conan Doyle as possible. He is Mark McPherson.” John Bennett Shaw
But on his own account, since childhood Mark McPherson's interest in the worlds of Arthur Conan Doyle and his Great Detective have become a realized dimension of his life. A professed student of the mysterious and arcane who turned his love toward investigation, he would eventually create the DAEDALOS Investigative Agency and address a host of the world's greatest literary, historical, paranormal, and criminal enigmas. Called "a real life Sherlock Holmes" and "Michigan's Indiana Jones,"
McPherson's explorations have involved the hunt for the Loch Ness Monster, the probing of sacred sites of Egypt's Giza Plateau and a methodical pursuit of the Shakespeare Authorship Mystery. He has also examined the enigma of the Shroud of Turin, conducted The Final Houdini Séance and sponsored an underwater hunt for Atlantis and numerous archaeological expeditions in Britain in quest of the mytho-historical Arthurian legends. Reflecting his enduring interest in the subject of Sherlock Holmes, Mark McPherson sought and found the Dartmoor location of the "true Baskerville Hall" in conjunction with the Sherlock Holmes Society of London and in 1979 consulted with Scotland Yard in the unparalleled manhunt for the "Yorkshire Ripper." He was the first to present a commemorative plaque at the legendary site of "221B, Baker Street" in London in 1978. Nine years later he would confer with his friends Dame Jean Conan Doyle and Richard Lancelyn Green to create a dramatic "Evening With Sir Arthur Conan Doyle," followed by a decade-long series of critically acclaimed performances throughout America, Britain and Canada.
As a popular lecturer, journalist, author, actor, playwright, film-maker and historical detective, Mark McPherson's personal adventures have garnered him many distinctions, not the least of them being his honorific investiture as "Cecil Barker" for the Baker Street Irregulars. A member of the Amateur Mendicants and Old Soldiers of Baker Street, he was founder of the Napoleons of Crime of Detroit. He has also received numerous accolades from the Arthur Conan Doyle Society and a host of international scion organizations. Currently residing at "Gray Gables," a 169-year-old riverfront manse on the island of Grosse Ile, Michigan, Mark McPherson currently shares his reputedly haunted residence with his wife Dori and his ever-faithful "canine Watson," Bradbury. By his own Profession, An Irregular Life is "the first and last of my memoirs."
The Death of Sherlock Holmes (29th May)
The previous diaries of Arthur Conan Doyle tell of the shadowy real life Sherlock Holmes, a medical school dropout. While in the laboratory of Dr. Joseph Bell, a brilliant Edinburgh surgeon, Holmes learned anatomy, surgery, observation and deduction. These skills and his ability to solve crimes led to his recruitment by the British secret service. In this the last of three diaries, Doyle recounts a series of murders and the pursuit of a sinister Russian assassin from Edinburgh to the Yosemite Valley in California. When the case, involving a California millionaire and Chinese tongs becomes desperate, the British secret service sent Sherlock Holmes. The case ended in his death but the great detective lives on in the novels by Arthur Conan Doyle.
Sherlock Holmes and Doctor Watson are visited by Mr Josiah Endicott, an injured enquiry agent who believes that three recent murders are connected.
He explains that he was attacked shortly after interviewing a friend of one of the victims and warned to discontinue his investigation. A remark of one of his assailants appeared to confirm that the murders were committed with a common motive and, as his client is clearly unable to proceed, Holmes agrees to assume the case.
Sherlock Holmes and The Crystal Palace Murder (12th June)
Sherlock Holmes readers have always asked, why did Holmes go to Meiringen? And did Moriarty follow him there? And if Holmes did not die in the Falls, what happened next? The familiar stories tell us little. For the first time this book gives us the answers we always wanted. Johanna Rieke’s careful and detailed research, and understanding of the region, show what really happened, and how Holmes escaped, to reappear three years later in London. If Moriarty is now dead, however, his evil work goes on. In London, Holmes and Watson, drawn into an apparently meaningless murder in the Crystal Palace in South London, , soon recognise that much more is at stake. How are a greengrocer’s shop, a dockyard pub in East London, a tattooed seaman and a mysterious German all involved, and who is Moriarty’s shadowy successor? Only Holmes and Watson, in a desperate search and by sharp deduction, can hope, at the last moment, to foil a disaster. Can they prevent many innocent deaths, and protect Britain’s standing in the world? Even as the story ends, they know that their fight against evil will go on, and that Moriarty’s successors are always alert, a constant threat. As this exciting book makes clear, Holmes’ task never ends.
The fifth novel to be translated from the original German from Johanna Rieke.
The Lost World Re-Imagined (16th June)
THE LOST WORLD RE-IMAGINED: In this volume, the original and unabridged text of The Lost World is accompanied by sixty-five charming colour photographic illustrations featuring custom designed models built using only LEGO® brand minifigures and bricks. This uniquely illustrated edition is sure to delight LEGO enthusiasts, as well as fans of the writings of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, children and adults alike. Part of the Re-Imagined Series which includes over a dozen Sherlock Holmes adventures.
"I had seen many strange things in my time living in 221B Baker Street with Mr. Sherlock Holmes, but an elderly man standing in the middle of our living room holding a blood-stained duck was most certainly one of the oddest of my experiences." Join Sherlock Holmes and John Watson as they solve six cases involving stolen jewels, political intrigue, dreadful murders...and a duck!
A massive new 2 volume collection (paperbacks will be launched later this year) of thirteen stories from Chris Chan.
In Part One, Holmes and Watson investigate an alleged haunting at the Diogenes Club, vandalism at a prominent art gallery, the case of a frightened amnesiac, the takeover of 221B by vicious criminals, the sequel to "The Engineer's Thumb," the defiling of Holmes' Stradivarius violin, and a Christmas story featuring a graveyard with angry insults carved into the headstones.
In Part Two, Holmes solves cases in alternate universes and alongside famous historical and fictional figures. In the title story, Watson is slandered by mysterious forces who spread the rumor that the good doctor pushed Holmes off of Reichenbach Falls. In other cases, Holmes solves a real-life murder aboard a train; partners with G.K. Chesterton's Father Brown in a murder case; helps the crusading lawyer Grace Quackenbos Humiston (affectionately nicknamed "Mrs. Sherlock Holmes"); seeks out someone capable of filling his brother Mycroft's shoes; and investigates a plagiarism lawsuit involving H.G. Wells. The game is afoot!
In "The Adventure of the Jeweled Falcon", Holmes tracks down an ancient priceless statue, but others are looking for it, too - and a host of other stories too.
The Endeavours of Sherlock Holmes (2nd Sept)
A banker finds a photograph of a woman who later appears to him on the street. Could she be leading him to an inexorable appointment with fate? Does she even exist?
The Adeptus Exemptus and Imperator of the Esoteric Society of the Roseate Morn is being menaced by a magician with an improbable name. Could there be something to his curse?
Can Holmes and a young girl solve a 300-year-old riddle about her family before the Christmas pudding is served?
Who is Cassandra and why was she trying to disgorge a fish from her throat?
Join Sherlock Holmes and Dr Watson as they untangle these mysteries and several others while encountering criminals, spies, and the occasional English eccentric. The eight stories collected in The Endeavours of Sherlock Holmes are traditional pastiches, several of which have appeared previously in such publications as Sherlock Holmes Mystery Magazine and The MX Book of New Sherlock Holmes Stories.
Sherlock Holmes and The Sixty Steps (8th Sept)
Séamas Duffy’s fourth novel, “Sherlock Holmes and the Sixty Steps” follows a similar format to his previously published Holmes collections: a novella together with some shorter stories. The four stories are: “The Tragedy of Langhorne Wyke” (1890); “The Mystery of the Thirteen Bells” (1895); “The Adventure of the Sixty Steps” (1897); “The Problem of the Coptic Patriarchs” (1898).
It's Christmas eve at 221B Baker Street. On the stroke of midnight, a delivery arrives addressed to Sherlock Holmes. The message is a cryptogram which reveals itself to be so obtuse that it has the famous consulting detective baffled. Holmes becomes so obsessed with revealing the secret of the cypher that Watson fears for his well-being in refusing to eat or sleep. Holmes can only deduce that time is of the essence, and that a means of deciphering must be discovered which has never before been employed. Watson wonders what new adventure will emerge should the puzzle be unraveled. Adaptation of the stage play of the same name.
Did you ever wonder where Sherlock Holmes found the Persian slipper he keeps his shag tobacco in? Had Holmes and Watson ever met before that day at St. Barts? Did Holmes really believe in curses when he said he did?
Dr. John Watson reveals the answers to these questions in The Persian Slipper and Other Stories along with cases involving the putative Naval Man, a night spent at a gentlemen’s club, Holmes’ second marriage proposal, a movable tree, and a surprising wedding ending.
One moment the lovely young woman was walking through the Battle of Hastings exhibition at the British Museum; the next, she lay dead on the checkered museum floor, a Norman arrow protruding from her breast. Inspector Lestrade believed he had solved the mystery, but almost immediately recognized that Scotland Yard needed the help of Sherlock Holmes. From London to the Lake District, the master detective, along with his colleague Dr. Watson and recently-met American mystery writer, Anna Katharine Green, follows a string of clues that ultimately exposes the intricacies of a tragic love story-a woeful tale whose twists and turns reveal what Watson accurately called "the unhappiest of Holmes's adventures."
This unique volume is aimed at the new generation of Sherlockians from nine to ninety-nine. It contains Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s original novel, complimented by a fun and fact filled educational supplement which consists of; a who’s who, location lists, writing tasks, research exercises, a crossword puzzle, histories of Queen Victoria, Victorian childhood, transport and travel, Scotland Yard and the Metropolitan Police Force, a guide to Sherlock Holmes’ London, a history of Sherlock Holmes on the stage, screen, and radio, an original audio play for four aspiring young actors, colourful characters from the Sherlock Holmes’ canon, the life of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, and a Victorian timeline. Many of the above come with an abundance of question and answer tasks.
The Poisoned Pawn: A Sherlock Holmes Adventure (15th November)
A quiet morning at Baker Street is thrown into turmoil by the arrival of Inspector Lestrade who informs Holmes a man’s body has been discovered in the Tower Bridge which was then under construction. That grisly event proves to be the opening salvo in a terrifying game of wits between Holmes and an unknown adversary.
Determined to make Sherlock Holmes suffer, the ruthless foe launches a campaign of terror against the Great Detective. However, instead of striking at Holmes directly, this nemesis targets those in the Great Detective’s limited circle of friends and acquaintances.