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The Bookbag reviews Sherlock Holmes and The Affair in Transylvania

“Overall this is an exciting and entertaining read which will definitely appeal to both Sherlockians and fans of Bram Stoker.”

The Bookbag is the one of the world’s largest book review sites and we are always excited to receive the email from them that a review of one of our books is ready. Their review of Gerry O’Hara’s first novel Sherlock Holmes and The Affair in Transylvania was a great one to read.

“I normally start reviews with a brief plot summary, but it seems almost besides the point to do so for a book entitled Sherlock Holmes and the Affair in Transylvania. From those seven words, the reader will have no doubt guessed that this is a Holmes meets Dracula story, and so we may as well move straight on to the burning question – is it any good?

Yes, in many ways, it is. The substitution of Holmes and Watson for Van Helsing is the main change in a story which follows the original fairly closely – other minor characters are removed or changed a bit, but we get Renfield, Lucy, Mina, and of course the Count himself drawn fairly faithfully. Most notably, Holmes and Watson themselves are extremely close to Conan Doyle’s originals; no real surprise as this is almost always a real strength of authors signed by MX Publishing.

Having said that, if I have a minor fault to find with it, it’s that it perhaps sticks a little bit too closely to the original Stoker novel; if anything; maybe a few more surprises would have made it even better. Nevertheless it held my attention from start to finish and will stick in the memory thanks to a few especially effective scenes and the great characterization of the central pair. I should also point out that I’ve read so many Holmes books recently that I’m perhaps harder to impress than the average reader, and while this doesn’t quite rank up there with the very best (which I’ll mention below), it’s a solid first novel and I would definitely be interested in reading more by Gerry O’Hara.

Overall this is an exciting and entertaining read which will definitely appeal to both Sherlockians and fans of Bram Stoker.”

You can read the full review on The Bookbag site.

Sherlock Holmes and The Affair in Transylvania is available through all good bookstores like Amazon and Barnes and Noble, in all electronic formats including Amazon Kindle and iBooks for the iPad.

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Starting a new Sherlock Holmes based career at the age of 87 film legend Gerry O’Hara

” idiosyncratic and entertaining”

It’s not every day that you sign a major film director as a new author and to be brutally honest I found the experience exciting, humbling and a little intimidating all rolled into one. Gerry O’Hara is best described as a legend of the big screen having several dozen films under his belt but no stranger to TV either with episodes of iconic series like The Avengers under his belt too. A prolific screenwriter Gerry also wrote several books during his career, but never had the time to do anything with them – now that he is semi-retired (many would kill for the guy’s energy) he has unearthed several to be published this year and we as you may know grabbed his Holmes novel – Sherlock Holmes and The Affair in Transylvania. You don’t need detection skills on a par with the great detective to work out that this is Holmes and Dracula territory. The Sherlock Holmes Society of London were among the first to get a review copy: “Sherlock Holmes and the Affair in Transylvania by Gerry O’Hara is similarly idiosyncratic and entertaining. As you might guess, Mr O’Hara pits Holmes and Watson against Count Dracula, but in a different way from his predecessors, Loren D Estleman and David Stuart Davies. Although great chunks of Bram Stoker’s text remain, his story has been rewritten to exclude Professor Van Helsing, and various other characters are reimagined. Mina is now Watson’s niece, married to a Romanian named Janos. Lucy is the daughter of Dr Westenra, who supervises an asylum in Transylvania, where all the events occur. Surprisingly, this is Gerry O’Hara’s first book, after a long career as writer and director in film and television (he wrote the story for Sherlock Holmes and the Incident at Victoria Falls, so he’s not new to Holmes).” What the review doesn’t mention is the rather stunning illustrations which were created as paintings and then scaled down for use in the book. The originals are all in colour and one is used for the cover. In the paperback they appear in greyscale, but in the ebooks they are in glorious colour, so if you have the Kindle version make sure you take a peek at them on a colour device like your computer as they are pretty special. Gerry’s memoirs are out in a few months which, if the contract signing lunch stories he told are anything to go by are going to be funny and pretty revealing. Here is a wonderful interview with Gerry with his agent Tom Evans……

Sherlock Holmes and The Affair in Transylvania is is available through all good bookstores including Amazon and Barnes and Noble in electronic formats like Amazon Kindle.

 

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Sherlock Holmes Society of London reviews Sherlock Holmes and The Affair in Transylvania

” idiosyncratic and entertaining”

It’s not every day that you sign a major film director as a new author and to be brutally honest I found the experience exciting, humbling and a little intimidating all rolled into one. Gerry O’Hara is best described as a legend of the big screen having several dozen films under his belt but no stranger to TV either with episodes of iconic series like The Avengers under his belt too. A prolific screenwriter Gerry also wrote several books during his career, but never had the time to do anything with them – now that he is semi-retired (many would kill for the guy’s energy) he has unearthed several to be published this year and we as you may know grabbed his Holmes novel – Sherlock Holmes and The Affair in Transylvania. You don’t need detection skills on a par with the great detective to work out that this is Holmes and Dracula territory.

The Sherlock Holmes Society of London were among the first to get a review copy:

“Sherlock Holmes and the Affair in Transylvania by Gerry O’Hara (due 2 November; £9.99/$16.95/€12.99) is similarly idiosyncratic and entertaining. As you might guess, Mr O’Hara pits Holmes and Watson against Count Dracula, but in a different way from his predecessors, Loren D Estleman and David Stuart Davies. Although great chunks of Bram Stoker’s text remain, his story has been rewritten to exclude Professor Van Helsing, and various other characters are reimagined.

Mina is now Watson’s niece, married to a Romanian named Janos. Lucy is the daughter of Dr Westenra, who supervises an asylum in Transylvania, where all the events occur. Surprisingly, this is Gerry O’Hara’s first book, after a long career as writer and director in film and television (he wrote the story for Sherlock Holmes and the Incident at Victoria Falls, so he’s not new to Holmes).”

What the review doesn’t mention is the rather stunning illustrations which were created as paintings and then scaled down for use in the book. The originals are all in colour and one is used for the cover. In the paperback they appear in greyscale, but in the ebooks they are in glorious colour, so if you have the Kindle version make sure you take a peek at them on a colour device like your computer as they are pretty special.

Gerry’s memoirs are out in a few months which, if the contract signing lunch stories he told are anything to go by are going to be funny and pretty revealing.

Sherlock Holmes and The Affair in Transylvania is due out on 2nd November though there are some limited pre-publication copies appearing on bookstores like Amazon.

 

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