Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes is among the most famous literary figures of all time. For more than a hundred years, his adventures have stood as imperishable monuments to the ability of human reason to penetrate every mystery, solve every puzzle, and punish every crime. For nearly as long, the macabre tales of H. P. Lovecraft have haunted readers with their nightmarish glimpses into realms of cosmic chaos and undying evil. But what would happen if Conan Doyle's peerless detective and his allies were to find themselves faced with mysteries whose solutions lay not only beyond the grasp of logic, but of sanity itself. In this collection of all-new, all-original tales, twenty of today's most cutting edge writers provide their answers to that burning question. "A Study in Emerald" by Neil Gaiman: A gruesome murder exposes a plot against the Crown, a seditious conspiracy so cunningly wrought that only one man in all London could have planned it-and only one man can hope to stop it.
Arthur Conan Doyle and H.P. Lovecraft were masters of mood and suggestion, qualities in short supply in this anthology collecting 18 all-original tales in which Sherlock Holmes and other Doylean characters confront various Lovecraftian horrors. A few contributions amount to cinematic action-adventure stories better suited to Indiana Jones, while perhaps the most atmospheric entry, Caitl�n R. Kiernan's "The Drowned Geologist," with its sly Dracula allusions, relates more closely to her novel Threshold than to the book's theme. The more successful tales tend to adhere to traditional Holmesian scenarios, such as those by the two editors: Pelan's "The Mystery of the Worm" puts a neat Lovecraftian twist on one of Dr. Watson's untold cases, while Reaves's "The Adventure of the Arab's Manuscript" makes imaginative use of an unexpurgated copy of the Necronomicon found in an Afghan cave. Just as good are Richard A. Lupoff's "The Adventure of the Voorish Sign" and Poppy Z. Brite and David Ferguson's "The Curious Case of Miss Violet Stone." F. Gwynplaine MacIntyre's "The Adventure of Exham Priory" takes the humor prize for an egotistical quip from the master detective, who alludes to the cosmic conclave of human and alien minds in HPL's "The Shadow Out of Time": "I was offered a chance to commune with intellects nearly the equal of my own." (Oct. 1) Forecast: At the small-press level, Holmes has contended with Cthulhu in a series of adventures by Ralph E. Vaughn (Sherlock Holmes and the Ancient Gods, etc.). Given the high concept of mixing the distinctive worlds of two classic genre giants (nicely captured in the pulpy jacket art), this one should succeed in the commercial marketplace by virtue of curiosity value alone. Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information. -- PUBLISHERS WEEKLY.
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1 . Excellent collection of short stories
Posted March 08, 2009 by Mr.War , LAThere are 18 stories concerning Sherlock Holmes in this compilation. In all of them, the detective is somehow involved with sobrenatural (Lovecraft Mythos related) episodes. At least, half a dozen tales are first rate stories, but the first story by Neil Gaiman (A study in Emerald) is the true gem in my opinion!
March 01, 2005
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Excerpt from Shadows over Baker Street by John Pelan
1. THE NEW FRIEND
Fresh from Their Stupendous European Tour, where they performed before several of the CROWNED HEADS OF EUROPE, garnering their plaudits and praise with magnificent dramatic performances, combining both COMEDY and TRAGEDY, the Strand Players wish to make it known that they shall be appearing at the Royal Court Theatre, Drury Lane, for a LIMITED ENGAGEMENT in April, at which they will present ' My Look-Alike Brother Tom! ' ' The Littlest Violet-Seller ' and ' The Great Old Ones Come ' (this last an Historical Epic of Pageantry and Delight); each an entire play in one act! Tickets are available now from the Box Office.
It is the immensity, I believe. The hugeness of things below. The darkness of dreams.
But I am wool-gathering. Forgive me. I am not a literary man.
I had been in need of lodgings. That was how I met him. I wanted someone to share the cost of rooms with me. We were introduced by a mutual acquaintance, in the chemical laboratories of St. Bart ' s. ' You have been in Afghanistan, I perceive ' ; that was what he said to me, and my mouth fell open and my eyes opened very wide.
' Astonishing, ' I said.
' Not really, ' said the stranger in the white lab coat who was to become my friend. ' From the way you hold your arm, I see you have been wounded, and in a particular way. You have a deep tan. You also have a military bearing, and there are few enough places in the Empire that a military man can be both tanned and, given the nature of the injury to your shoulder and the traditions of the Afghan cave folk, tortured. '
Put like that, of course, it was absurdly simple. But then, it always was. I had been tanned nut brown. And I had indeed, as he had observed, been tortured.
The gods and men of Afghanistan were savages, unwilling to be ruled from Whitehall or from Berlin or even from Moscow, and unprepared to see reason. I had been sent into those hills, attached to the ' ' th Regiment. As long as the fighting remained in the hills and mountains, we fought on an equal footing. When the skirmishes descended into the caves and the darkness, then we found ourselves, as it were, out of our depth and in over our heads.