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The Last Sherlock Holmes Story by Michael…

The Last Sherlock Holmes Story (1978)

by Michael Dibdin

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4331924,328 (3.63)16
  1. 00
    Mr Holmes by Mitch Cullin (sweetiegherkin)
    sweetiegherkin: An elderly Sherlock Holmes revisits in his mind a case that continues to haunt him many years after its conclusion.
  2. 00
    The Sherlock Holmes Theatre [UNABRIDGED] by Arthur Conan Doyle (sweetiegherkin)
    sweetiegherkin: Audio collection with a mix of original and new Sherlock Holmes stories.

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In this pastiche, Watson follows his friend into the investigation that surrounded Jack the Ripper. With lives at stake and things not as they seem, Watson must make a difficult decision.

There seem to be two groups of readers: those who thought it brilliant and those who hate it. I come somewhere in the middle, to be honest. The tone of the story is very much the Watson I've come to know from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's stories. Logically, everything falls into place. It is EASY to see the conclusion that is reached.

On the other hand, as much as I could understand the ending, it broke my heart. This was not the Holmes I know and love.

For a Holmes fan with an open mind, this is a definite read. ( )
  TheQuietReader | Apr 27, 2017 |
Wow! This was entirely unexpected and really very inventive. And there's no way I'm going to be able to discuss without the most enormous plot spoilers, so if you don't want to know whodunit, look away now...

This is presented as a document of Watson's memoirs that have been stored in a vault for 50 years after his passing, such that they were opened and then published in the mid 70s. The fun thing about the presentation is that Watson makes reference to Arthur Conan Doyle and how some of his earlier memoirs came to be in print, thus not ignoring the written legacy, but explaining how these come to be written in a different voice and style.

It takes place in the 1880s and starts out with Holmes investigaing the case of Jack the Ripper. And after a while he comes to the conclusion that the crmes are being commited by Moriarty. Only, and here comes the bombshell, Watson comes to the conclusion that it is Holmes who is Jack the Ripper - and that Moriarty is a figment of a nervous dissociative disorder. Wow! I wasn't expecting that!
And from there it all progresses to a grand finale that doesn;t do anything to contradict the books by ACD himself, it's just that wheer they are based on Watson's notes of the cases maybe not all of the case notes he handed over were complete or entirely acurate.
On sheer inventiveness this gets top marks.
I listened to this on audiobook, narrated by Phillip Glennister and he did a really good job of vocalising Watson's forst person narrative and then adding Holme's comments in an apopropriate voice. It was really very very good. ( )
  Helenliz | Dec 3, 2013 |
A full length Sherlock Holmes story, one of the many involving Jack the Ripper, and featuring Moriarty (why does seemingly almost every full length Holmes pastiche have to feature Moriarty?). Holmes's evil nemesis is used in a very unusual way here, though, and the story ends with a shocking twist which leads to a dramatic change in the chronicles of the Great Detective. I can't say any more without revealing spoilers, but I instinctively don't care for the resolution. The book is extremely well written and very authentically Conan Doylesque. There is a hilarious passage in the Introduction where Holmes takes issue with the sensationalist style in which Conan Doyle has written up one of his cases as the first Holmes story A Study in Scarlet, whereas the detective's inductive approach had preferred the rather more clinical Towards a Definitive Praxis of Applied Criminal Anthropology: Some Notes on the Stangerson-Drebber Murders of 1881! ( )
  john257hopper | Nov 2, 2013 |
Such a good writer, such an interesting premise. It may be a pastiche, but Dibdin nails it and enlarges our thinking about Holmes and Watson. R.I.P (Note: ACD=Arthur Conan Doyle, also a character) ( )
  ReneeGKC | Oct 6, 2013 |
As a lover of Holmes since early high school, I wish I had read the other reviews here before purchasing and reading this book. Well plotted, well written, and intensely interesting, I hated it. Wish I had never read it. ( )
  GTTexas | Jan 31, 2013 |
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'When William Gillette, the American actor, asked the author if he might introduce a love interest in the Sherlock Holmes play... Sir Arthur briskly cabled: "Marry him, murder him, do what you like with him" It should be recorded that some tnhsiasts regarded even this high canonical (Conanical?) authority with disfavour.'
James Edward Holroyd, introduction to Seventeen Steps to 221B
To Benita
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It was the autumn of 1888, and the day one of that class that Sherlock Holmes used to describe as 'unhealthy'.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0679766588, Paperback)

In 1888 Sherlock Holmes is languishing for a criminal case worthy of his powers, then one materializes, heralded by the spatter of gore and the shriek of headlines. For in vice-ridden Whitechapel, three female paupers of dubious morals have been murdered, their bodies hideously defiled. And in taunting letters their killer announces his intention to strike again—and signs his name "Jack the Ripper."

As conceived by the award-winning mystery writer Michael Dibdin, The Last Sherlock Holmes Story is a brilliantly inventive updating of the Holmes legend. Pitting master detective against archfiend, steely rationalism against satanic depravity, Dibdin gives us a Holmes who is more complex, more human, and ultimately more fascinating than the one imagined by Arthur Conan Doyle. Here is a riveting combination of history and fiction that confirms Dibdin's reputation as one of the most imaginative and atmospheric crime writers now at work.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:21:18 -0400)

(see all 7 descriptions)

In the late 70s an extraordinary document came to light, a continuous narrative by Dr Watson following the investigation of 3 women murdered by Jack the Ripper. As each trace of the ghastly outrage is recorded his identity comes into focus. Originally published: London: Jonathan Cape, 1978.… (more)

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