RSS

Tag Archives: christmas

What’s New in 2018: Top Holmes Gifts for Sherlockians

What’s New in 2018: Top Holmes Gifts for Sherlockians – by The Best of Sherlock Holmes

2018 Sherlock Holmes Books – Fiction

The year’s best fictional Holmes books published in 2018.

A Knife in the Fog by Bradley Harper

Jack the Ripper struck less than a year after Holmes’s debut, and many pastiches put Holmes on the Ripper case.  In a twist reminiscent of Murder Rooms, Harper has Conan Doyle and Joseph Bell investigate the Ripper murders.  They team up with socialist/feminist Margaret Harkness, who displays aspects of Irene Adler.  This mashup of real historical figures in fictionalized roles works pretty well, although Harper pushes the limits when he includes Mark Twain.  Harkness ends up as the most interesting character, and the fast pace should please thriller readers and Ripper fanatics.  ($15.95 SRP; Amazon US listing $10.97) 

Sherlock Holmes and the Miskatonic Monstrosities by James Lovegrove

With rather more than a wink and a nod to the reader, Lovegrove mixes Holmes with H.P. Lovecraft’s Cthulhu mythos. While more of a supernatural adventure than a mystery, Holmes does make some good deductions.  It includes many references to the original Holmes tales, and we learn those are actually based on more macabre events in this alternate universe.  Like A Study in Scarlet, the second part of this book tells a separate backstory.  You don’t have to read the first book in this series to enjoy this one, and a third volume arrives on November 27.  However, it certainly helps to have a basic background on Cthulhu.  ($14.95 SRP; Amazon US listing $10.37) 

The Irregular by H.B. Lyle

Wiggins, the former head of Holmes’s band of street-urchin assistants, is a British Army veteran who reluctantly becomes a secret agent investigating a terrorist conspiracy.  Grittier than the Holmes tales, this fast-paced spy thriller offers a compelling blend of action and deduction, with vivid characters and excellent descriptions of 1909 London.  Holmes makes a brief appearance.  The book should appeal to Sherlockians as well as fans of historical mystery or espionage.  A fine start for what promises to be a fascinating series, the sequel The Red Ribbon will be released in mid-November.  ($16.99 SRP; Amazon US listing $11.55) 

Holmes Entangled by Gordon McAlpine

Conan Doyle knows that someone is trying to kill him, and turns to Sherlock Holmes for help.  By no means a traditional Holmes mystery or pastiche, this work of metafiction is imaginative with clever insights and speculations on the Canon and its characters.  It is mostly narrated by Holmes with a sophisticated style and a dry sense of humor.  Featuring a story within a story, as well as aspects of quantum physics and the multiverse, you’re more likely to enjoy this tale if you have some wider knowledge of literature and/or science.  ($13.95 SRP; Amazon US listing $10.23)

The Further Chronicles of Sherlock Holmes (Vol. 1 & 2) by Denis O. Smith

You simply cannot beat Denis O. Smith for traditional Holmes stories that capture the style and characters of Conan Doyle.  Several of the tales in this collection are excellent, and all the rest are very good.  If you’ve never read Smith, get this collection now!  You’ll also want to consider his New Chronicles and Lost Chronicles.  Smith fans should note that 6 of the 12 stories in the Further Chronicles have appeared in other books.  The paperback version  of Further Chronicles (also in Kindle format) is split into two books, with Volume 2 perhaps slightly better.  ($34.95 SRP; Amazon US listing; or $14.95 paperback Volume 1 and Volume 2.)

2018 Books About Holmes & Conan Doyle

The year’s best books about Holmes or Conan Doyle published in 2018.

The Serpentine Muse on CD-ROM 

Old issues of Sherlockian journals are often difficult to find, and even if you own copies, they typically lack cumulative indexes.  A few, such as the eBSJ v2, have been scanned, and this new CD-ROM from the archives of the Adventuresses of Sherlock Holmes is a most welcome addition. It contains the complete run of 134 issues of The Serpentine Muse from its inception in April 1975 through Spring 2017.  The scanned PDFs feature searchable text provided via good-quality OCR, and it includes a searchable Acrobat index.  This mix of scholarly articles and fun reading at a great price is a must-buy!  ($15 and free shipping; not on Amazon, see ASH website)

Conan Doyle For The Defense by Margalit Fox 

Conan Doyle intervened in a number of real-life crimes, including the case of Oscar Slater.   Fox excels at providing context and background for American readers, and goes well beyond the Slater affair to discuss the evolution of detection and forensics.  Even if you don’t care about Slater, people interested in history or true-crime should find this a fascinating read.  Its main weakness is an overemphasis on police bias, given later allegations that the police knew the actual murderer and covered it up.  But Fox tells this history very well indeed, and holds your interest through the entire book.  ($27.00 SRP; Amazon US listing $18.36)

Trenches by Robert Katz and Andrew Solberg (eds.)

While Conan Doyle once said that Holmes was too old to serve in WWI, he did involve Holmes as a secret agent in “His Last Bow.”  This volume examines Holmes and Conan Doyle in the First World War.  It reproduces the extant manuscript for “His Last Bow,” five original drawings by Frederic Dorr Steele for the story, and Conan Doyle’s manuscript of a poem about the war.  Transcriptions, annotations, and discussions of the origins of these items provide context for the creations.  A fine collection of essays, both historical and playing “the game,” explore many related topics.  ($39.95 SRP; not on Amazon; see BSI website)

A Chronology of the Life of Arthur Conan Doyle by Brian W. Pugh (fourth edition, 2018)

When writing about Conan Doyle, or fact-checking someone’s claim about him, Pugh’s Chronology is the place to start.  It provides a master index to more than 2,000 books, articles and select primary sources about Sir Arthur.  The chronological listing of events includes the sources for dating each event.  This 2018 edition expands the book’s main entries by 40 pages, offers citations with more detail than prior editions, and has an improved index.  Online stores might carry older editions, so be sure to get the book with “2018” in the upper right corner, as linked here.  ($34.95 SRP; Amazon US listing $34.95)

Click here for more Sherlock Holmes gifts.

best of sh gifts

Advertisements
 

Tags: , , , , ,

Review of The MX Book of New Sherlock Holmes Stories Part V

Despite their common Christmas season setting, the 30 stories in this latest collection of traditional pastiches are not lacking in variety. For connoisseurs of pure deduction, tales by Mike Chinn, Jan Edwards, Arthur Hall, Roger Riccard, and S. Subramanian show Holmes at his most brilliant. (A future MX volume will feature more “untold” cases from the Canon like Mr. Subramanian’s.) Several pairs of stories revolve around a single theme. Jealousy motivates the crimes recorded by Bob Byrne and Denis O. Smith; Queen Victoria figures in offerings from Derrick Belanger and Julie McKuras; S.F. Bennett and Marcia Wilson tell similarly gruesome Christmas stories, the former redeemed by an unexpected heroine. In selections by James Lovegrove and Vincent Wright, Holmes and Watson concoct Christmas entertainments for each other, with rather mixed results. Most enjoyable of all, perhaps, are tales that cast new light on the personalities and relationship of our two heroes. C.H. Dye paints a delightful portrait of their second Christmas as young bachelors, while David Marcum illuminates Holmes’ religious beliefs in an even earlier story. Two fine concluding works by Hugh Ashton and Mark Mower, set in and after World War I, show that the long friendship between our detective and his Boswell has only deepened through the years. As Marcum notes in his introduction, Conan Doyle’s London was only a generation removed from Charles Dickens’. The Dickensian spirit of Christmas shines through many of these tales, notably John Hall’s, Tracy Revels’, and Amy Thomas’s. Ms. Revels’ moving story, in particular, proves that those who consider Holmes as much a misogynist as Scrooge are very much in error. Happily, the quality of this ongoing MX anthology remains as high as ever, with four new volumes set to appear within the next two years. Surely that news, for Sherlockians, is the nicest Christmas gift of all.

Reviewed by Thomas A. Turley

The MX Book of New Sherlock Holmes Stories – Part V: Christmas Adventures is available from all good bookstores including The Strand Magazine, Amazon USA, Amazon UKWaterstones UK and for free shipping worldwide Book Depository. In ebook format it is in Kindle, Kobo, Nook and Apple iBooks (iPad/iPhone).

9781780929958

 

Tags: , , ,

Sherlock Holmes: Have Yourself a Chaotic Little Christmas

It’s that time of year again on Baker Street. That time when trees are trimmed, snow is falling, and… Mycroft is helping Watson to play out an old carol? Well, take one obsessive Sherlockian and give her a flood of ideas from wildly-imaginative fellow fans… and you get one wacky advent calendar of Sherlockian short stories. A picnic in a graveyard, a snowball fight, a violinist on the roof, a vampire or two, Jack the Ripper, Professor Moriarty, and the Baker Street Irregulars all combine to make this one unforgettable Christmas collection.

Sherlock Holmes: Have Yourself a Chaotic Little Christmas is available from all good bookstores including The Strand Magazine,  Amazon USA, Amazon UK, Waterstones UK, and for free shipping worldwide Book Depository . In ebook format it is in Amazon KindleKobo, Nook and Apple iBooks (iPad/iPhone).

chaotic-christmas

 

Tags: , ,

Out today – The MX Book of New Sherlock Holmes Stories – Part V: Christmas Adventures

The MX Book of New Sherlock Holmes Stories – Part V: Christmas Adventures features contributions by: Bob Byrne, Derrick Belanger, Amy Thomas, David Marcum, Denis O. Smith, C.H. Dye, Marcia Wilson, Julie McKuras, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Bert Coules, John Hall, Jim French, S.F. Bennett, Narrelle M. Harris, William Patrick Maynard, Vincent W. Wright, James Lovegrove, Arthur Hall, Nicholas Utechin, Mike Chinn, Tracy J. Revels, Roger Riccard, Wendy C. Fries, Paul D. Gilbert, Jan Edwards, Molly Carr, S. Subramanian, Peter K. Andersson, Matthew J. Elliott, Hugh Ashton, and Mark Mower,  with a poem by Ashley D. Polasek and forewords by Jonathan Kellerman, Roger Johnson, Steve Emecz, Melissa Farnham, and David Marcum.

The MX Book of New Sherlock Holmes Stories – Part V: Christmas Adventures is available from all good bookstores including The Strand Magazine, Amazon USA, Amazon UK,Waterstones UK and for free shipping worldwide Book Depository. In ebook format it is in Kindle.

9781780929958

 

Tags: , , ,

Sherlock Holmes and The Missing Snowman

A young girl’s snowman has gone missing. Where can it have gone? There is only one man who can help. Sherlock Holmes, the most famous detective in the world.

A heart-warming Christmas tale featuring Sherlock Holmes and a certain ‘missing person’. His five year old client is distraught, Watson is indignant, Holmes to the rescue. Lovingly illustrated with a realistic Baker Street sitting-room and a fine looking Holmes and Watson, this is a slight, but endearing story which should appeal to not only younger children, but to those of us who still like to nurture our inner child. Delightful.” – The Baker Street Society

Sherlock Holmes and The Missing Snowman is available from all good bookshops including in the USA Barnes and Noble and Amazon , in the UK Amazon and Waterstones. For elsewhere Book Depository who offer free delivery worldwide. In ebook format it is in Kindle, Kobo, Nook and iPad.

missing snowman

 

Tags: , ,

Philip K. Jones reviews Holmes in Time for Christmas by Ross K. Foad

“This is the first Sherlockian fiction by Mr. Foad that I know of.  It is a short novel that takes place during “The Great Hiatus.”

This is a lively, amusing tale that occurs while Sherlock is touring England as an actor.  He and “The Woman” have been touring together, he as Mr. Sigerson and she as Miss Adler. They seem to enjoy one another’s company but also do not seem to be romantically tangled.  Both are taking a rest from their regular lives, using acting to keep themselves occupied.

Holmes receives a small package in the mail which sends him into a depressed state.  On December 24th of 1899, Watson queries him about the package and Holmes agrees to explain it as his Christmas present to Watson.  Holmes tells Watson to come along and he calls for a cab that takes them to the Diogenes Club.  It appears that Mycroft is involved in the events represented by the package.

The package contained a small book which is a piece of Irene Adler Norton’s diary. Together, Sherlock and Mycroft, with the help of the diary, tell the story of a trio of Christmas murders that all three of them investigated in December, 1893.

The story is well-told and enthralling and the characters all act in ways consistent with their personae as revealed in the Canon.  The editing is relatively good, with only a sprinkling of neologisms and misplaced apostrophes and commas.  The author will, however have to overcome a tendency to drop surreptitious puns like small landmines along the way.  Many readers who are not addicted punsters may find them distracting or even corrupting.  He must remember why Socrates was condemned, “…for corrupting the minds of the young.” Creating a taste for sneaky puns is definitely a step down that slippery slide.”

Reviewed by: Philip K. Jones, October, 2013

Published in “The Beggar’s cap, [V10, # 01, 09/2013]

Holmes in Time for Christmas is available from all good bookstores including  Amazon USABarnes and Noble USA, Amazon UKWaterstones UK, and for free shipping worldwide Book Depository . In ebook format it is in Amazon Kindle and Apple iBooks(iPad/iPhone).

holmes in time for christmas

 

Tags: , ,

The Top NLP Books for the Christmas List

Here are some recommendations for NLP books this christmas – ones that we ourselves will be gifting to friends and family. Some are for specific groups of people, but we kick off with one general one on New Year Resolutions.  Make New Year Resolutions and Keep Them Using NLP (Donna Blinston). The majority of us see the new year as an opportunity to make changes in our lives, and whether you have a formal new years resolution list, or just want to find a way to keep to a few specific things, this simple and practical book from Donna Blinston has worked wonders. Chris and Amazon reviewer comments I bought this book to help me get fit, I found it really easy to read and very beneficial. A lot of its contents are quite common sense when brought to your attention and without out them I believe I would still be where I was.”

NLP For Parents and NLP For Children. Judy Bartkowiak’s Engaging NLP series (which now includes Teens and Tweens) takes NLP and applies half a dozen to a dozen techniques to specific groups. Each book is 80-100 pages long and contains easy to implement methods to situations specific to the life stages involved. There are also books for New Mums, for Work, Teacher and others, and it is the NLP for Parents and NLP for Children books that are the most popular.

Bangers and Mash. For any person dealing with cancer, family members and friends, Keith Hern’s incredible moving book takes us on a journey with him as he battled throat cancer the first time around. Keith is a photographer so there are plenty of amazing pictures as well. With the aid of an NLP coach, Keith has beaten cancer twice, and is once again currently using a host of NLP techniques in his third battle against cancer. Keith is a leading advocate of the use of NLP with cancer patients and many hospitals have in fact changed their procedures after reading the book.

Seeing Spells Achieving (Bendefy and Hickmott). The #1 NLP book in the world for learning difficulties since 2006, the book is still in the UK top 20 NLP books and has helped turn around the lives of tens of thousands of people – mainly children – with a variety of learning difficulties such as dyslexia. When first launched is what seen as revolutionary – applying NLP techniques in this field – and six years later is regarded as the definitive book that many others have built upon.

Negotiation Mastery. We can all do with some help in negotiation, whether its in business or in our personal lives. This new book comes from the position of creating the ‘win-win’ and is getting incredible reviews. The author, Simon Horton, has even trained top hostage negotiators and his no-nonsense approach is very easy to follow.

Influencing The Interview. Getting a job in the challenging economy is extremely tough and Chris Delaney should know – he runs a recruitment business. Chris is also an NLP practitioner and in this book he shares all the secrets of maximising your influence in that all important job interview using a host of NLP and hypnotherapy techniques

And The Next Question Is? Getting the necessary information is all down to how good your questions are and this book has thousands of insightful questions that will live long in many coaches and practitioners toolkits.

Finally, a fun book that includes a chapter on NLP from one of the world’s most fascinating mentalists – Joe Riggs. ‘The Real Sherlock Holmes’ is a book that explains the deductive techniques that con-artists and charlatans use to garner facts about people – many of which are used by the world’s most famous consulting detective Sherlock Holmes. The title of the book comes from a major US newspaper reporter who, on witnessing Riggs’s deductive skills, dubbed him ‘the real Sherlock Holmes’ and the name stuck.

 

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

 
%d bloggers like this: