Welcome! Like the book of the same name, this blog is an eclectic collection of Sherlockian scribblings based on more than a half-century of reading Sherlock Holmes. Please add your own thoughts. You can also follow me on Twitter @DanAndriacco and on my Facebook fan page at Dan Andriacco Mysteries. You might also be interested in my Amazon Author Page. My books are also available at Barnes & Noble and in all main electronic formats including Kindle, Nook, Kobo and iBooks for the iPad.

Monday, October 14, 2019

"A Happy Exception," Says Review

The review below of my Sherlock Holmes novel House of the Doomed is immensely gratifying to me because reviewer Pat Ward not only grasped precisely what I was trying to achieve, she thinks I succeeded! 

The review appears in the Fall 2019 number of Canadian Holmes, the journal of the Bootmakers of Toronto. If you are unfamiliar with this fine publication, check it out. 

Now, the review:

There are now far more Sherlock Holmes pastiches than the 56 short stories and four novels written by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Most of these, in my opinion, aren’t very good. House of the  Doomed is one of the happy exceptions. It has an excellent, traditional, English country house mystery and avoids the pastiche’s many sins. Holmes and Watson act and speak like Holmes and Watson. Holmes does not have to save the world, or at least the British Empire. He does not encounter historical figures. There are no romantic interests for Holmes and Watson (Irene Adler does not appear, and Watson doesn’t get any additional wives). The story’s structure is not unlike that of Conan Doyle’s Holmes novels, and at 119 pages, the book is roughly as long as Doyle’s longer works. Unlike many pastiches, this story is not bloated or overwritten, but well-paced and plotted. 

Dan Andriacco is a mystery writer and a Sherlockian, and both are evident in this book. The setting is an old dark house full of potential victims, suspects and possibly a few ghosts. 

House of the Doomed is an excellent mystery, one that compares well with Conan Doyle’s work. It is also that rare thing, a good Sherlock Holmes pastiche. It may not be from Conan Doyle’s pen but it could have been.

Pat Ward

House of the Doomed is available at http://www.wessexpress.com/html/houseofdoomed.html

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