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The House of Silk by Anthony Horowitz
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The House of Silk

by Anthony Horowitz (Author)

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1,167926,945 (3.84)1 / 83
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Showing 1-5 of 87 (next | show all)
Very enjoyable and quite well done; it tracks the Conan Doyle backstory very well. It drags in some parts, and some passages may feel more Dickensian than you'd expect or perhaps want, but I enjoyed it and look forward to more. Horowitz was a good choice. ( )
  Laura400 | Jul 2, 2015 |
Pleasingly reminiscent of the original Conan Doyle style. ( )
  MarkCook | Jun 22, 2015 |
It seems to this reader that the writing style follows the simple sentence structure of some YA novels. While desirable in that alternate genre, it was not a style that felt natural for a tribute to Sherlock Holmes. To the future me: be careful about committing to another novel by Anthony Horowitz unless it is one of his YA novels. ( )
  bsiemens | May 7, 2015 |
I think I needed to be more familiar with the traditional Sherlock Holmes stories before reading this one.
  KR_Patterson | Apr 28, 2015 |
A fine art dealer comes begging for Sherlock’s help, as he has been menaced by a strange man; a wanted man that has followed him all the way from America. Art dealer named Edmund Carstairs then finds his home robbed, family threatened and then his client murdered. Unwillingly Holmes and Watson find themselves in a conspiracy connecting London to the Boston underground by an opium den known as the House of Silk.

For the first time in One hundred and twenty five years the Arthur Conan Doyle Estate have officially authorised a Sherlock Holmes novel. Anthony Horowitz’s novel tries to capture the style and feel of the original Sherlock novels but I never really felt that he got Arthur Conan Doyle’s style right. It felt stripped back and less complex than the Sherlock novels I’ve actually read and then there is a slight modernisation to the writing that can be very difficult to hide.

Watson is back as the unreliable narrator documenting their adventures, while the mystery and conspiracy in House of Silk are well plotted and play out rather well. I tend to think this is more of a Robert Downey Jnr’s style Sherlock Holmes rather than the Conan Doyle one. Diehard fans will probably enjoy another adventure but I can’t help but wonder if this book would be better played out with some original characters.

House of Silk came off rather dull in parts and while I haven’t read many Sherlock novels I can’t help but compare it with the ones I have read and Anthony Horowitz’s attempt was close but never felt the same. Tiny little things like the phrase “the game is afoot” being changed to “the game’s afoot” really helped show the differences.

While I did enjoy House of Silk as a novel, I don’t think there was anything spectacular about it. While this an officially authorised Sherlock novel (debatable, Caleb Carr’s The Italian Secretary and Lyndsay Faye’s Dust and Shadow are both approved by the estate) it is not the same. I think I would rather read a Benedict Cumberbatch style Sherlock novel rather than another attempt at trying to replicate Conan Doyle’s style and plots.

This review originally appeared on my blog; http://literary-exploration.com/2013/03/03/book-review-house-of-silk/ ( )
  knowledge_lost | Mar 16, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 87 (next | show all)
So, all of the elements are there: the data, the data, the data. Nothing of consequence overlooked. And yet can Horowitz, like Holmes, make from these drops of water the possibilities of an Atlantic or a Niagara? Can he astonish us? Can he thrill us? Are there "the rapid deductions, as swift as intuitions, and yet always founded on a logical basis" that we yearn for?

Emphatically, yes. The characters are, as Conan Doyle himself would have them, as close to cliché as good writing allows. Horowitz's Watson cleverly excuses himself right at the start from any complaints about style or content by reminding us of Holmes's oft-stated judgment of the stories: "He accused me more than once of vulgar romanticism, and thought me no better than any Grub Street scribbler." We must take them on their own terms, then: Mr Carstairs, the troubled dealer in fine art, who is being watched by a mysterious stranger in a flat cap with a "livid scar on his right cheek". Carstairs's wife, the mysterious foreign adventuress. Cornelius Stillman, the bumptious American millionaire. The dastardly Boston Irish gang, led by the ruthless O'Donaghue twins. The madwoman in the attic. The creepy reverend who runs a home for boys. The big set-pieces: the train robbery; the escape from prison; the freak show; the high-speed horse-drawn carriage chase.

Dorothy L Sayers understood the rules of the Holmesian game when she remarked that "it must be played as solemnly as a county cricket match at Lord's: the slightest touch of extravagance or burlesque ruins the atmosphere". Horowitz plays a perfectly straight bat. This is a no-shit Sherlock.
 

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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Horowitz, AnthonyAuthorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Jacobi, Sir DerekNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wardle, DavidCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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I have often reflected upon the strange series of circumstances that led me to my long association with one of the most singular and remarkable figures of my age. If I were of a philosophical frame of mind I might wonder to what extent any one of us is in control of our own destiny, or if indeed we can ever predict the far-reaching consequences of actions which, at the tie, may seem entirely trivial.
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The Game is afoot
Baker Street Irregulars
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0316196991, Hardcover)

For the first time in its one-hundred-and-twenty-five-year history, the Arthur Conan Doyle Estate has authorized a new Sherlock Holmes novel.

Once again, THE GAME'S AFOOT...

London, 1890. 221B Baker St. A fine art dealer named Edmund Carstairs visits Sherlock Holmes and Dr John Watson to beg for their help. He is being menaced by a strange man in a flat cap - a wanted criminal who seems to have followed him all the way from America. In the days that follow, his home is robbed, his family is threatened. And then the first murder takes place.

Almost unwillingly, Holmes and Watson find themselves being drawn ever deeper into an international conspiracy connected to the teeming criminal underworld of Boston, the gaslit streets of London, opium dens and much, much more. And as they dig, they begin to hear the whispered phrase-the House of Silk-a mysterious entity that connects the highest levels of government to the deepest depths of criminality. Holmes begins to fear that he has uncovered a conspiracy that threatens to tear apart the very fabric of society.

The Arthur Conan Doyle Estate chose the celebrated, #1 New York Times bestselling author Anthony Horowitz to write The House of Silk because of his proven ability to tell a transfixing story and for his passion for all things Holmes. Destined to become an instant classic, The House of Silk brings Sherlock Holmes back with all the nuance, pacing, and almost superhuman powers of analysis and deduction that made him the world's greatest detective, in a case depicting events too shocking, too monstrous to ever appear in print...until now.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:14:32 -0400)

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With approval from the estate of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, a best-selling novelist and Sherlock Holmes expert brings the greatest detective in literary history back to life on Baker Street for the first time since 1930.

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