When his last book won the 2011 Howlett Award (Shelock Holmes Book of The Year) it was always going to be tough for Alistair Duncan to meet expectations with his next one. Thankfully he does that, and more, in arguably one of the best books ever written on Conan Doyle. An Entirely New Country went down so well with co-creator of BBC’s Sherlock, Mark Gatiss that he agreed to provide the foreword.The Sherlock Holmes Society of London has now reviewed the book in their latest newsletter and they agree to the importance of the book. Holmes fans have fed back that in addition to being historically significant the book is also an excellent read.
“Alistair Duncan’s Eliminate the Impossible was a very good start, and Close to Holmes confirmed him as a truly important writer in our field. In The Norwood Author he illuminated, as no previous biographer had, an essential period in the life of Conan Doyle, when Sherlock Holmes leapt to international fame – and his creator killed him. Now An Entirely New Country: Arthur Conan Doyle, Undershaw and the Resurrection of Sherlock Holmes throws light on the drama of the years that followed, when Conan Doyle and his family lived in Undershaw, the house he’d had built at Hindhead, where conditions were favourable for his invalid wife Louise. Hindhead was also the centre of an informal community of writers and artists.
During the Undershaw years Conan Doyle wrote The Hound of the Baskervilles and The Return of Sherlock Holmes. He served as a field surgeon in the Boer War and wrote a full history of the conflict. He adopted the cause of the wrongly convicted George Edalji. He was knighted. And he fell in love with Jean Leckie, who would become his second wife. Today, Undershaw is in a sad state, empty and threatened by inappropriate ‘development’. It’s fitting that the foreword to this admirable book was written by Mark Gatiss, the Patron of the Undershaw Preservation Trust. See www.saveundershaw.com“
An Entirely New Country is available through all good bookstores including Amazon USA, Amazon UK, The Mysterious Bookshop (New York), Classic Specialities and in a simply stunning Kindle version that includes the dozens of photos in all their digital glory. If you are lucky enough to have a Kindle Fire we can report back that the colour photos come out really well on it.