Tuesday, February 12, 2013

The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes Wrap-up!

We did it. They didn't think we could do it but INDEED WE DID. We have not only read two novellas by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle but an entire collection of short stories. From my paperback copy, we have now read over 500 pages of Sherlockian wonder and only a fraction of that is awkwardly about Mormons causing havoc in America.

So we decided to honor The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by giving out prestigious awards before we continue onto The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes. Below are the accomplishments and judgment we are giving to Doyle for his mighty collection of stories. We definitely spent more than 30 seconds thinking about these.

Coolest Mystery:
Austin: “The Adventure of the Speckled Band.” It has to be. All of those exotic animals and the resolution is a method that is equally insane and brilliant

Leigh: "The Case of the Engineer's Thumb." This felt complex and crazy enough to actually have happened.

Silliest Moment: 
Austin: It has to be Sherlock Holmes randomly hanging out in the coke den. This prestigious Victorian detective just hanging out there and refuses to make a big deal out of it.

Leigh: All of the "Red Headed League." That whole story is just one silly moment after another. If I HAD to choose, the finale when they're chilling out in the basement waiting for the bad guy to show up.

Best Outdated Word:
Austin: Pip! Pip!

Leigh: EJACULATED! teeheehee Carbuncle and Beryl are also in the running but ejaculated is just so funny when taken out of context. 

Character We Most Want to Come Back:  
Austin: If I recall we only saw her once in the dozen stories and that is the very sweet Mrs. Watson. I liked her a lot in The Sign of Four and she could have a nice dynamic in the adventures aside from just giving the greenlight on the sidelines.

Leigh: As much as I hate people using her as Holmes' romantic interest, I would like to see Irene Adler come back to be her awesome self.

Character We Most Wanted to Throw Out a Window: 
Austin: There are plenty of dickish villains but if I have to pick one for pure irony's sake I'm going to go with Mr. Rucastle from "Copper Beeches" because being seen from a window was a key part of his plan.

Leigh: This one is a tough one because there are a lot of bad guys in this book that I just want to hit in the face with a brick but I think the one I want to smash their face in most is Dr. Roylott from "Speckled Band." Murdering your stepdaughters just because you want their money because you are a worthless piece of trash? OUT THE WINDOW FOR YOU!

Most Improbable Story:
Austin: “The Red-headed League.” No question.

Leigh: "The Man with the Twisted Lip." Seriously, COMMUNICATE WITH YOUR PARTER. If anything else, this one taught me not to marry someone unless I knew what they did for a living. 

Underrated Story: 
Austin: I had a lot of fun with "A Case of Identity" especially how that was Doyle breaking away from pattern and giving Holmes a darker ending.

Leigh: I'm going to have to pick "Engineer's Thumb" again. It isn't a popular one for adaptations and I enjoy that Watson was the one to start off the mystery.

Worst Story: 
Austin:  I didn't hate a single story but I was the most frustrated with "The Adventure of the Engineer's Thumb" because it was a Sherlock-light story and it didn't really need to be.

Leigh: "Orange Pips." I just didn't care as to why we were solving the mystery. It was more of a mystery than others, I'll say that but I was more interested in what the uncle did to get such scorn from the KKK.

Best Story: 
Austin: I didn't think I would go this route but reviewing the set, none have the epic quality and unexpected character turns as "A Scandal in Bohemia."

Leigh: "Scandal" because it shows that Holmes is human and can be outsmarted and that's something that readers need reminded of when idolizing a fictional character.

And you're welcome, internet! That concludes our coverage of The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes! Before we venture into Memoirs, we are going to cover a special modern novel entitled The House of Silk by Anthony Horowitz so all of you should read that by next week. Then we will be reading “Silver Blaze!” Get excited and thank you for reading!


  1. Very neat summation of the collection of stories! I do have some comments for Austin, in passing.

    I hope you read the stories more closely. It wasn't a coke den; it was an opium den.

    And regarding the improbability of "The Red-Headed League," the bank portion was not improbable at all: http://www.bakerstreetblog.com/2010/04/running-tunnel-to-some-other-building.html

    Can't wait to read what you do with the Memoirs.

    1. Wow. We both missed that coke/opium den mistake! I promise we payed more attention than that when reading them.

      I will go on record for saying, "oops!"