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The Whole Art of Detection: Lost Mysteries…

The Whole Art of Detection: Lost Mysteries of Sherlock Holmes

by Lyndsay Faye

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This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Excellent narration for a very good set of "Holmesian" short stories. Tales mimic well the nuances of Watson's role as amanuensis and friend to the darkly intensive and intellectual world's first consulting detective. These tales should survive, thrive and hopefully, multiply. ( )
  jamespurcell | Apr 26, 2017 |
I have read quite a lot of Sherlock Holmes stories written by authors than Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Some good, some less than good. However, this collection is one of the finest I have ever read and the stories really feel like they were written by Conan Doyle himself.

The book's stories are both before he met Watson and both before and after his "death". All stories are high in quality and some are easier to solve than others. I especially like the dynamic relationship between Watson and Holmes. Sometimes, Watson is made out to be a stumbling buffoon, but in this collection is Watson more a fitting partner to Holmes. They work well together, and they are very good friends.

In this book, we meet damsels in distress, murders, thieves, etc. One story that comes to mind is one that takes place during The Hound of Baskerville because it's told through Holmes point of view, and also because it explains why Holmes stayed back in London while Watsons traveled to Dartmoor with Sir. Baskerville. And, that is just one story among many good.

It's a splendid collection, and now I want to read Dust and Shadow by Lyndsay Faye!

I want to thank the publisher for providing me with a free copy through NetGalley for an honest review! ( )
  MaraBlaise | Apr 14, 2017 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I received this audiobook as part of the Early Reviewers program. I also bought the hard copy. I really liked both versions. Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson never get old. I'm so happy they keep getting reinvented. ( )
  Doondeck | Apr 11, 2017 |
The Whole Art of Detection - Faye
Audio performance by Simon Vance
4.5 stars

I really can’t get enough of Sherlock Holmes. How nice of Lyndsay Faye to give me more Holmes and Watson stories to read. And how nice of Simon Vance to read them to me. These stories are very much true to the original Conan Doyle stories. This collection of stories also follows the pattern of Faye’s book length Dust and Shadows. Watson is more intelligent and a more active participant. Holmes is more human and humane.

There are enough differences from the original stories to give this collection a fresh stamp, but they still fall within the mold. Faye provides details and gives depth to the friendship between the partners, especially in two stories that deal with Holmes’ dramatic return from the dead. Several of the stories take on dear Sherlock’s alleged misogyny. There are at least 6 stories with women as either victim or villain. In three of the stories, Watson and Holmes aid and abet a female criminal to outwit abusive husbands and/or the unfair legal restrictions placed on Victorian women. Holmes seems to be taking a stand for women’s rights, at least in the areas personal finance and legal divorce. I always knew he was a good guy.

I enjoyed every story in this collection. None of the mysteries were terribly difficult to figure out. But I didn’t read them for the puzzles. It was just fun to visit with two of my favorite literary characters. ( )
  msjudy | Mar 29, 2017 |
I have never especially been a fan of Sherlock Holmes, but I like Lyndsay Faye’s writing enough to want to read whatever she produces.

The author has apparently been writing these tales for a while about the characters of Sherlock Holmes and his collaborator and biographer John Watson, and they are collected in this volume along with two new stories. They illustrate a point Holmes makes to Watson when discussing a case:

“There are precious few crimes in this world, merely a hundred million variations upon a dozen or so themes.”

Most of the stories are told from the point of view of Dr. Watson, although a few appear as excerpts from Sherlock Holmes’ diary.

Throughout the book we get a growing sense of the skill of Sherlock Holmes and his amazing powers of observation and deduction. We also get increasing evidence of the the devotion each man has for the other. In fact, I thought the continuing unfolding of their relationship makes a better story than the recounting of crimes and how they got solved. I also enjoyed the difference between the ways in which Watson and Holmes thought about women. Watson tends to wax rhapsodic about them, while Holmes avers:

“I would as soon permanently tether myself to a wardrobe as a female…”

Faye is very adept at conjuring up the atmosphere and syntax of the times, and her turns of phrase are often breathtakingly adept, such as with this musing by Dr. Watson:

“The sea of melancholy in which I was floating had soaked me to the bone.”

Evaluation: This volume is bound to please fans of Sherlock Holmes. Lyndsay Faye is an excellent writer. ( )
  nbmars | Mar 15, 2017 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0802125921, Hardcover)

Internationally bestselling author Lyndsay Faye was introduced to the Sherlock Holmes mysteries when she was ten years old and her dad suggested she read Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s short story “The Adventure of the Speckled Band.” She immediately became enamored with tales of Holmes and his esteemed biographer Dr. John Watson, and later, began spinning these quintessential characters into her own works of fiction—from her acclaimed debut novel, Dust and Shadow, which pitted the famous detective against Jack the Ripper, to a series of short stories for the Strand Magazine, whose predecessor published the very first Sherlock Holmes short story in 1891.

Faye’s best Holmes tales, including two new works, are brought together in The Whole Art of Detection, a stunning collection that spans Holmes’s career, from self-taught young upstart to publicly lauded detective, both before and after his faked death over a Swiss waterfall in 1894. In “The Lowther Park Mystery,” the unsociable Holmes is forced to attend a garden party at the request of his politician brother and improvises a bit of theater to foil a conspiracy against the government. “The Adventure of the Thames Tunnel” brings Holmes’s attention to the baffling murder of a jewel thief in the middle of an underground railway passage. With Holmes and Watson encountering all manner of ungrateful relatives, phony psychologists, wronged wives, plaid-garbed villains, and even a peculiar species of deadly red leech, The Whole Art of Detection is a must-read for Sherlockians and any fan of historical crime fiction with a modern sensibility.

(retrieved from Amazon Sat, 27 Aug 2016 17:34:12 -0400)

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