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The Sherlock Holmes Society of London Reviews My Dear Watson

Following the wonderful review from The Bookbag (see below), The Sherlock Holmes Society of London is next up to review this fascinating book which sees Sherlock Holmes cast as a woman.

“I started this book after an evening out, thinking I would just read a page or two to help me sleep… two hours later I’d read all of it. Margaret Park Bridges knows how to give a reader a good time. Each page beckons you hypnotically towards the next. It’s suspense filled, interesting, fun and, indeed funny to the point of farce on a couple of occasions.” The Bookbag

In the current newsletter from The Society, they agree that despite the controversial storyline, this is a very good book.

“Margaret Park Bridges takes an even more revisionist approach in her novel My Dear Watson (MX Publishing; £9.99/ $18.95/ €12.99). The detective’s secret is disclosed at the very start of the book, and it’ll do no harm to reveal it here: Sherlock Holmes was a woman. It’s not a new idea but it’s handled here with great skill and confidence, and it has a purpose, to account for much of Holmes’s personality as described by Dr Watson. 

Visits to the Turkish baths must have posed problems, but there’s no real contradiction here of Watson’s accounts. The woman Holmes lives as a man, and Watson believes her to be a man. Am I convinced? No. Do I accept it while reading the book? Yes, and not only because it’s essential to the story, which is a good one, involving the beautiful daughter of the late James Moriarty.”

My Dear Watson is available from all good bookstores worldwide including Amazon USA, Amazon UK, and in all good formats including Kindle, Nook, iBooks (iPad/iPhone),

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NPLH video review of The Lost Stories of Sherlock Holmes from Tony Reynolds

The most popular No Place Like Holmes video review ever. Ross K himself comments on the book “Definitely one of my favourites to date”.

 

The Lost Stories of Sherlock Holmes are available from all good bookstores worldwide, on Amazon, Amazon Kindle, Kobo Books and iBooks (iPad/iPhone).

 

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Bookbag Reviews My Dear Watson – a novel of Sherlock Holmes

“I started this book after an evening out, thinking I would just read a page or two to help me sleep… two hours later I’d read all of it. Margaret Park Bridges knows how to give a reader a good time. Each page beckons you hypnotically towards the next. It’s suspense filled, interesting, fun and, indeed funny to the point of farce on a couple of occasions.”

Four star reviews from independent bookstore review site The Bookbag are to be treasured as they don’t come around too often. My Dear Watson gets a great review – a few minor gripes – but overall “this is an excellent book with a driving plot and twists right through it like a stick of rock.”

Margaret Park Bridges book was originally published in Japanese a decade ago so it was lucky Sherlock Holmes fans in Japan who until now had been treated to the concept of Sherlock Holmes as a woman. You can read the full review on The Bookbag Website.

My Dear Watson is available from all good bookstores worldwide including Amazon USA, and in all good formats including Kindle, Nook, iBooks,

 

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Bookbag review of Sherlock Holmes and The Lyme Regis Horror – 2nd Expanded Edition

“Sherlock himself is captured very, very well. His genius, his impatience, and his arrogance mix together in just the right quantities for this to feel like a ‘canon’ story”.

Those among you that are authors and publishers will know The Bookbag is the UK’s leading independent book review site – and that they are thorough. There is a mix of excitement and trepidation when the email arrives to say a new book review is ready. Thankfully they give a glowing review of Sherlock Holmes and The Lyme Regis Horror 2nd Edition.

When author David Ruffle brought the book to us, he proposed adding another 100 pages to the already very popular 1st edition, and we’re very glad he did. There are several additional short stories –  “…the best amongst them, while little more than vignettes, are absolutely wonderful. Henrietta’s Problem and Christmas at Baker Street are two of the sweetest pieces I can remember reading on Holmes and Watson, yet fit the established characters perfectly, while I absolutely loved the last line of Christmas with Holmes – superb.”

The review summary says it all – “An enjoyable novella is backed up by a series of extras, including some quite wonderful vignettes. High recommendation.”

Great timing as the sequel Sherlock Holmes and The Lyme Regis Legacy comes out next month.

The full review is available on The Bookbag website.

Sherlock Holmes and The Lyme Regis Horror is available from all good bookstores worldwide including in the USA Classic Specialities, Amazon, Barnes and Noble and in most electronic formats including Amazon Kindle.

 

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No Place Like Holmes video review of Sherlock Holmes and The Lyme Regis Horror – 2nd Expanded Edition

Ross Foad’s video book reviews seem to be getting better and better and this week he tackles Sherlock Holmes and the Lyme Regis Horror. The first edition was a bestseller with Holmes fans around the world – the new edition gains another 100 pages and some more short stories complementing the main Lyme Regis based novel. The review is the highest scoring one we’ve had.

Part 1

Part 2

 

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Philip K Jones aka The Ill Dressed Vagabond Reviews A Case of Witchcraft – A Novel of Sherlock Holmes

Last month the Sherlock Holmes Society of London described A Case of Witchcraft as “well written and thoroughly researched”. This month it is the turn of Philip K Jones (aka The Ill Dressed Vagabond) with a very detailed review. Phil’s own first book – The Punishment of Sherlock Holmes is out soon.

This novel is a first person narration by Sherlock Holmes.  Dr. Watson is laid up as the result of an Operation to remove the Jezail bullet he had carried since his Service in Afghanistan.  The daughter of a clergyman has asked Holmes to investigate the disappearance of her father on one of the Scottish North Sea islands.  As the object of the Reverend’s investigation was one of three main source tales for the traditional Cinderella story, one that involved witchcraft and had been denounced by the Established Church, his daughter believed that he might have been taken by devotees of the Mother Goddess for use as a sacrifice at the upcoming Halloween celebrations.  Holmes agrees to investigate and sets out for the North coast of Scotland.

On the northbound train he falls in with the young Aleister Crowley and their discussions of Witchcraft, Eastern religions and Holmes’ case lead Crowley to offer his services as companion/bodyguard to Holmes for the duration of his investigation.  Their discussions make the Author’s Historical points by citing examples but they avoid giving a general summary of the details available about the World’s oldest surviving Religion.  The events that triggered this particular ‘Ur-Cinderella’ variant seem to have occurred in Viking times and to have taken place on an island later noted as a source of ‘Witches.’

My own acquaintance with what is now called Wicca and its history assure me that its origins go back to and, possibly, before  the Neolithic Age.  I still recall first reading Robert Graves’ “Hercules, My Shipmate” and  my astonishment at the Priestesses of The Mother Goddess parching next year’s seed grain in a dispute with the Priests of the local Thunder God.  The God’s reply was traditional, as, in visions to his priests, he encouraged the men to go a-raiding to find loot to buy food.  Mr. Revill’s characters cite elements of various worship systems across Eurasia that seem to echo worship of the Mother Goddess.  In fact, the same tenets remain with us to this day cloaked in the guise of “green” practices with all of the ‘religious’ elements removed, except, perhaps, the ardor.

Holmes, in this book, uses a prose style that is spare and simple.  It is not the same voice that we hear in The Canon when Holmes is dictating.  It is possible that difference from the Canon might well be due to the efforts of the Literary Agent on the Canon.  In any case, this Holmes is inclined to discuss philosophy and his personal views much more than in previous publications.  He is also less prone to descriptions and to pontificating and belittling the efforts of the police.  Maybe it is the presence of Crowley, a public non-Christian, who would not be offended by Holmes’ Atheism following his studies in Tibet that encourages Holmes to open his thoughts more to his audience.  Watson, of course, would have been shocked to the core of his Established Church soul.

Perhaps the most singular feature of this book is its interesting characters.  All of the people depicted present strong and impressive personalities to the world.  From the local Detective Sergeant to the Schoolmistress and from the Island Provost to the waitress at a Fish and Chips store, all are distinct, interesting and individual people.  Secrets abound within secrets and there are several secretive movements at odds with one another.  The Nineteenth Century is dying before it really had a chance to enter into the lives of the Island and the twentieth Century is banging on the door loudly demanding entry.  Meanwhile, all involved are still trying to untangle the problems of the Tenth Century.

This book is deceptive.  A reader may expect some descent into barbarism and mumbo-jumbo or a tale of horror and madness.  Instead, one finds people coping with inherited Cultural positions and striving for control (‘Power’ is such a Nasty word) over their lives.  The same conflicts that arose at the very dawn of History are alive and kicking.  People are still only people and lives are taken, altered and enriched by the oddest trifles and strangest events.  Over all there remains the story of Cinderella, told from the viewpoint of the ‘wicked stepmother.’  It is a sharp and cogent tale, not just a case from Late Victorian times, but also a microcosm of large parts of Human History.”

A Case of Witchcraft is available from Amazon, and also in all good formats including Amazon Kindle , Barnes and Noble Nook, and iBooks for the iPad.

 

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The Bookbag reviews A Case of Witchcraft A Novel of Sherlock Holmes

“Overall, this is a rich and satisfying tale that provides us with a new insight into the most private recesses of the mind of Sherlock Holmes.”

Set in the Northern Isles A Case of Witchcraft has already caused some controversy written as it is by an expert on the occult. The Bookbag really liked the book and gave it a very strong 4 out of 5 stars.

“Revill’s work brings us the Holmes we love very quickly. Instantly recognisable with his usual ascerbic wit and attractive peculiarities, this novel draws in the reader rapidly, and sets up the storyline clearly.

As Holmes embarks on a journey towards the Northern Isles, we are treated to a comprehensive background of the ways of witches all over the world; all points are pertinent and the history is fascinating as well as necessary. The introduction to the ways of witchcraft demonstrates the worldwide links that will become highly significant later. Revill weaves in the relevant history and all its complications with ease, and the novel flows in spite of having to accommodate this.”

You can read the full review at The Bookbag Website.

The book is available from Amazon, and also in all good formats including Amazon Kindle , Barnes and Noble Nook and iBooks for the iPad.

 

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