Sometimes in my regular reading habits I wander off into the classics. It might have been a long time since I’d read a certain book. Perhaps The Count of Monte Cristo. Or an author whose work I’d passed by at a younger age. Think Jane Austin. Maybe a famous person of whom I’d read many biographies and history but wanted something in his or her own words. Julius Caesars The Gallic Wars came to mind. Then, quite recently, I was scanning my ereader (Nook) for bargains and there was The Complete Sherlock Holmes for two dollars. Not one to pass up a bargain, I took it. Yes, I’d already read it in fulfillment of Mrs. Himmelbachs 12th grade English “outside reading” requirement. Was it as good as I fondly remembered all those years ago? I intended to find out…..
From his first appearance in A Study in Scarlett , via his most famous adventures – The Hound of the Baskervilles and The Speckled Band – to his final appearances in the very short stories making up The Casebook of Sherlock Holmes, his deductions never fail to bring a smile and that aha moment.
We see Victorian life brought to life in every story. Conan Doyle provides the clever villains & flustered clients flitting in and about to create a portrait of fascinating characters. They are the heart and soul of each and every tale. And then most of all there is Holmes. He is one of the most interesting characters ever written. It’s all there. The odd habits mixing with the brilliant deductions. The quirky humor and single mindedness. It adds up to a personality like none other and yet not fake nor seemingly contrived. To top it off it’s all very well-written. Elementary dear reader. Elementary. I even remembered some of the "solutions" from long ago. Not too bad for a guy who can’t remember where he put his reading glasses half the time…...:)