Book #29

The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle

From his rooms in Baker Street, Sherlock Holmes grapples with forces of deceit, intrigue, and evil in Victorian London.

I own a very large, very travel-unfriendly copy of The Complete Works of Sherlock Holmes. In a bid not to overwhelm myself, I’m reading each of the novels in stages, usually one a year. This time, it’s The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes, and instead of an entire story devoted to one case, I was treated to a number of smaller tales, quickly wrapped up yet enlightening in their descriptions of Sherlock’s acumen, and wide in their variation of strange crimes. Although definitely not quite as compelling as The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, this is definitely a worthwhile addition.

Interestingly here, we’re given a few tales where Sherlock has missed the mark in his deductions. Although I can see this is an attempt to make him more relatable (we also hear of his school days, and family), he still remains untouchable, and a bit of sociopath.

There’s definitely a formula which made the stories predictable, except in the last story The Final Problem in which Moriarty is introduced. I’d have loved to have been present when this was initially released - the shock, the disbelief! Wow. The formula, however, is very much the same as it was in Adventures, which makes me yearn for a case with a bit more depth and intrigue.

Despite not being the best, there’s always delight in Sherlock’s explanation of events and how he came to solve them. Watson’s love for him is there as his friend and chronicler, and they both remain, as always, very close to my heart.