Maureen Whittaker’s Review-Remarkable Power of Stimulus

Maureen Whittaker’s Review-Remarkable Power of Stimulus

Features of Interest

Jeremy Brett, the Definitive Sherlock Holmes, decided that Holmes was ‘a man of feeling’ and Ms Altabef shows that throughout her very interesting novel.

In her novel, Remarkable Power of Stimulus, Gretchen Altabef has remained faithful to Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, retaining details of much of the original for her adaptation of the time following the tussle at Reichenbach, known as the Great Hiatus, and “The Adventure of the Empty House”.

It is no surprise that Conan Doyle’s most famous creation Sherlock Holmes should be the subject of yet another series of novels with the most popular fictional detective hero facing fresh challenges in new situations. I should state that I am not a fan of pastiche fiction as I invariably long to return to the original text that has been the source of so much pleasure.However,I needn’t have been concerned about this latest series.

I thoroughly enjoyed the story of what Holmes and Watson went throughboth separately and then together as Holmes returned once more to 221b…

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Posted by on December 1, 2020 in Uncategorized


Sherlock Holmes and the Thames Murders


The year is 1890 and London is shocked by a series of brutal murders in London’s docklands. Scotland Yard is desperate for assistance and call on Sherlock Holmes and Dr. John Watson to provide it.

“Sherlock Holmes and the Thames Murders” by Johanna M. Rieke is a corker of a book. Well plotted and well written, it is a delicious read from start to finish.

Ms. Rieke has kept the characters very true to Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s originals, and the friendship between Holmes and Watson, always an important part of any pastiche for me, is rock solid.

“Sherlock Holmes and the Thames Murders” was first published in German in 2012. This English edition is published by MX Publishing in 2020.

The book evokes the time and the place with some considerable skill. It is no stretch of the imagination to describe the book as a masterpiece.

I look forward…

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Posted by on November 30, 2020 in Uncategorized


REVIEW: Sherlock Holmes and the Case of the London Dock Deaths

Features of Interest

Ragged, angry men were shouting slogans and demands at the gates, which were guarded on the inside by several indifferent men whose only qualifications for the job appeared to be their size.

Sherlock Holmes and the Case of the London Dock Deaths by Margaret Walsh is an exciting and intriguing read. Sherlock Holmes, Dr. Watson, Inspectors Lestrade and Reid are baffled by the murders that are occurring with unwarranted frequency at the River Thames docks. A dock strike is in progress. It seems that everyone in the East End of London is taking advantage in the disquiet this brings to the society of dock owners and dock workers.

A radical group, smuggling, and more are suspected. A bigoted anti-Irish police officer does his best to blame the victim of the first murder. He stalls the investigation and leaves the actual murderer free to kill again. Holmes and Lestrade address this…

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Posted by on November 18, 2020 in Uncategorized


REVIEW: Remarkable Power of Stimulus

REVIEW: Remarkable Power of Stimulus

Features of Interest

Remarkable Power of Stimulus is the long awaited sequel to These Scattered Houses. It is an intense and exciting adventure from the first chapter to its ending. After 3 years away from his beloved England Sherlock Holmes returns to London with his young charge Miss Rachel Marcello. From the moment they step foot on the ship headed for home they encounter many challenges, some humorous others deadly. The reader will enjoy the good company of No. 221B Baker Street and the hearty reunion of Watson, Holmes and Mrs. Hudson. With Holmes and Watson reunited they are immediately called to action in pursuit of a mass murderer! This is a fast paced mystery that will keep you thoroughly engaged. A great read!


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Posted by on November 17, 2020 in Uncategorized


Review of Harry DeMaio’s The Open And Shut Case

Review of Harry DeMaio’s The Open And Shut Case

Features of Interest

By Gretchen Altabef, author of Sherlock Holmes: These Scattered Housesand Remarkable Power of Stimulus (due 16th November.)

“My dear, Inspector Wallaroo, remember my first principle of detection. After eliminating the possibly improbable, whatever is left is probably impossible.”––Octavius Bear

This is possibly one of the greatest Sherlock Holmes spoofs of all time! And damn well full of fun. Yet to bring this lovely world to life, it was deemed necessary to disappear all Humans from planet Earth. In a way that they left behind unscathed all they had created, buildings, society, culture, science, industry, and the arts. At the same instant all the animals became sentient and able to speak languages.

I haven’t yet read the genesis novel of this series, but do look forward to getting my paws on it. Oh, did I forget to mention, if you are not guffawing by page 10, you either don’t…

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Posted by on November 16, 2020 in Uncategorized


The Golden Pince-Nez

Sherlockian Musings

The noble lady from The Golden Pince-Nez. Illustration by Sidney Paget.

The Golden Pince-Nez

Golden? Okay, so why is the pince-nez golden? Well, Holmes tells us that it’s because its owner is no slatternly type but a lady, though she turns out also to be a revolutionary, a Nihilist, another foreigner. The stories lately seem interested in foreigners. Of course, we don’t know that she and Professor Coram are foreign, Russians, till the very end. At first it seems we’re being all very British and academic, buried in the past. Holmes even begins the story by looking at a palimpsest from the fifteenth century …

A palimpsest? Something whose original peeps through from underneath, which could be a symbolic statement of what these stories are all about: finding the hidden, the secret that lurks underneath. And what is the secret here?

It is a very palimpsest of a story, isn’t…

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Posted by on November 15, 2020 in Uncategorized


Sherlock & Irene: The Secret Truth Behind A Scandal in Bohemia


‘Sherlock & Irene: The Secret Truth Behind “A Scandal in Bohemia”‘ is not my usual sort of read. I do not usually venture into the area of Sherlockian scholarship or “pseudoscholarship”, as author Chris Chan would have it.

I am glad that I did. Sherlock & Irene: The Secret Truth Behind “A Scandal in Bohemia hits every button. It is interesting, thought provoking, and extremely entertaining.

The books explores many unanswered (and in some cases previously unasked) questions. Was the King of Bohemia hiding a dark secret? Why was the photograph so dangerous? Why was Irene Adler in such as hurry to get married? These questions and many others are comprehensively answered.

Chris Chan has written a book that is a sheer delight from the first page. Chris mentions the possibilities of writing more such books. I really hope he does, as this one was such a joy to read.

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Posted by on November 10, 2020 in Uncategorized


The Cotswolds Werewolf and other stories of Sherlock Holmes


“The Cotswolds Werewolf and other stories of Sherlock Holmes” was written by Peter K. Andersson and published by MX Publishing is 2014.

This great book comprises a novella: The Adventure of the Cotswolds Werewolf; and four short stories: The Adventure of the Velvet Lampshade, The Adventure of the Missing Mudlark, The Adventure of the Forking Paths, and The Adventure of the One-Armed Pugilist.

Usually with an anthology you get at least one dud story. Not this time. All five stories were excellent with each story being well plotted and well written. The titualar story has someone…or something, killing sheep in a small Cotswolds village. Holmes, reluctantly dragged there on holiday by Watson, takes on the challenge after the killer starts on people.

The friendship between Holmes and Watson is front and centre, which is something important to me in a pastiche.

A fabulous traditional Sherlock Holmes tale that will appeal…

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Posted by on November 3, 2020 in Uncategorized


Top 7 Sherlock Holmes Audio books in October so far

1.  Merchant of Menace – Richard T Ryan and Nigel Peever

2.  The Stone of Destiny –  Richard T Ryan and Nigel Peever

3.  The Vatican Cameos –  Richard T Ryan and Nigel Peever

4. Sherlock Holmes the Adventure of the Pigtail Twist – M J H Simmonds and Joff Manning

5.  Mycroft Holmes and the Edinburgh Affair – Janina Woods and Tony Cleary

6.  Sherlock & Irene – Chris Chan and David Bufton

7.  The Cotswolds Werewolf and Other Stories of Sherlock Holmes – Peter K. Andersson and Nigel Peever

For more audio books click here.

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Top 8 Sherlock Holmes Audio books in October so far

1.  Mycroft Holmes and the Edinburgh Affair – Janina Woods and Tony Cleary

2.  Merchant of Menace – Richard T Ryan and Nigel Peever

3.  The Stone of Destiny –  Richard T Ryan and Nigel Peever

4.  The Vatican Cameos –  Richard T Ryan and Nigel Peever

5.  Sherlock & Irene – Chris Chan and David Bufton

6.  An Evening In Baker Street – David Ruffle and Kevin Theis

7.  Mycroft Holmes and the Adventure of the Desert Wind – Janina Woods and Stockton Harris

8. The Sensible Necktie – Peter K. Andersson and Nigel Peever

For more audio books click here.

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