12 June 2006

9. The Hound of the Baskervilles by A.C. Doyle

Great book!

I hadn't read any of the Sherlock Holmes books yet, so when I stumbled upon this one in my classroom bookshelf I thought I'd give it a try.

A brief summary of the plot, first: After his uncle dies (under mysterious circumstances) Sir Henry Baskerville returns from North America to assume leadership/control of his family's ancestral estate. As soon as he gets to town he is given repeated warnings to go leave as soon as possible lest he succumb to the same fate as his uncle. Seems the family is cursed by a great hound, a big dog that lives on the moor near the house. Enter Sherlock Holmes and his pal Watson. They are called upon by Uncle Baskerville's friend Dr. Mortimer, who feels the uncle's death was suspicious and want some of the loose strings to be gathered up.

I found the style of writing to be very compelling, each chapter pushing me into the next. I was reminded of episodic Tale of Two Cities/Dickens. I was also pleased that the clues to the mystery were given to us as they were revealed, as in, the investigators shared what they knew with the reader right away. None of this Murder She Wrote surprise reveals at the end when all the information, motive, alibi, evidence is dropped in on us so we can see how diabolical the crime and how savvy the detectives. Here you had a fighting chance to make connections and riddle things out for yourself. Not to say there weren't a few surprises - maybe I'm a bit if a dunce, but I had no idea who the Man on the Tor was...

Definitely read this book - it's well-written and entertaining. I'm definitely going to read more Sherlock Holmes (I read the first page of Study in Scarlet in the bookshop the other day and I was simply shocked to find Holmes abusing cocaine!)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I love the sherlock books too I started reading them after becomeing obsessed with the bbc series. I've read a scandal in belgravia and another one about a read headed leauge. i think the fact that he has a drug addiction shows he isnt perfect adding some realism to the character.

this is the first blog ive read and i dont know what sort of things to comment about erm Good blog!