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text 2017-03-19 16:34
Reading progress update: I've listened 591 out of 4318 minutes.
Sherlock Holmes: The Definitive Collection - Stephen Fry - introductions,Audible Studios, Arthur Conan Doyle,Stephen Fry

I´ve been awfully busy last week and I didn´t get much reading done. However, I managed to put a huge dent into the Sherlock Holmes audiobook.


I finished the first two Holmes novels, A Study in Scarlet and The Sign of Four. Both have been rereads for me and I will stick with my initial rating of 3,5 stars for both stories. The infodumping in both of them concerning the perpetrators still bugs me, I just can´t help it.


I really like the narration by Stephen Fry, since he manages to make the stories come alive. And I´m enjoying the forewords by him. He gives for each novel / short story collection an introduction in which he puts the stories into a historical perspective. It´s really interesting and I cannot help but notice just how much of a Holmes-fanboy Stephen Fry is.

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review 2017-03-16 14:13
Review: A Study in Scarlet Women
A Study In Scarlet Women: The Lady Sherlock Series - Sherry Thomas

I am quite optimistic about this series. The writing is compelling, and so are this particular Holmes and Watson. There are some pacing issues in the first half, but overall, it's very satisfying in terms of plot, character, and craft. And it sets up a series that looks to be a great deal of fun without leaving the reader on cliff hanger.


I also really want to throw out a content warning, but that particular content is a major plot spoiler, so I'll hide it behind this tag. 


This book includes both child prostitution& includes the suicide of one of the victims of pedophilia. There are no graphic depictions of pedophilia or suicide, but both happening are central to the plot.

(spoiler show)


I love Charlotte Holmes. I love both how good she is at solving puzzles and how bad she is at thinking outside the box. Which I know sounds contradictory, but isn't. If the pieces exist, she can put them together. However, a novel solution to her own problems evades her until another character suggests it, even though she's half way there. Her thinking is constrained to what is possible in society, even when she knows her own capacities aren't aligned. 

I've already pre-ordered the next book in the series.

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text 2017-03-08 20:15
Reading progress update: I've listened 26 out of 4318 minutes.
Sherlock Holmes: The Definitive Collection - Stephen Fry - introductions,Audible Studios, Arthur Conan Doyle,Stephen Fry

After 5 hours of Dickens David Copperfield I had to throw in the towel. The audiobook, narrated by Richard Armitage, is excellent, but I wasn´t interested in Davids life at all. I guess Coming-of-age stories are not my cup of tea.


However, while browsing the Audible website, I found this collection of all the Sherlock Holmes novels, narrated by Stephen Fry. Each story has an introduction by Stephen Fry himself and what can I say, Stephen Fry is great and it is a pleasure to be listening to him. It´s a tome of an audiobook (approx. 72 hours), but I´m looking forward to every second of it.

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review 2017-03-06 11:16
He's Back
The Return of Sherlock Holmes - Arthur Conan Doyle

When we last left our fearsome detective he was plummeting to his death having cornered his arch-nemesis Dr Moriarty on the Reisenbarch Falls. Sir Arthur Conan-Doyle (Arty to his friends, and me) had thought that he has seen the last of him and was planning on taking it easy having put the famous detective to rest. Unfortunately that wasn’t going to be the case because we now see the beginning of what has since become the term ‘back by popular demand’. Well, sure, the fans may not have been satisfied with the short stories and couple of novels that had been released, but it seems that Arty had pretty much become sick of Holmes and the only reason that Holmes managed to survive the fall is not just because of public pressure, but because the financial gain that no doubt was heading Arty’s way was quite alluring.


Anyway, in the first story we learn that not only had Holmes survived that fateful encounter, but that he had been lying low for quite a while because he wanted to make it appear that he was actually dead. The main reason for that is because Moriatey’s second in command had taken over the organisation and Holmes wanted to bring it to an end without alerting his enemies. Anyway, he manages to do so, and then solves a multitude of other cases and finishes us preventing a European wide war when he steps in and locates a note that the Prime Minister of England had believed that he has lost. Actually, the final adventure in this particular book has the Prime Minister of England coming to Holmes for his assistance.


Okay, this collection of short stories appeared around ten years after the previous one so there was no doubt a long time between drinks. Maybe the reason Doyle decided to bring Holmes back from the dead is the same reason that bands from the 80s and earlier do come back tours – they have run out of money. For instance, I saw John Cleese live a year ago and when I mentioned that to a friend he made mention that the only time John Cleese goes on tour is when he runs out of money. Maybe that is why Simon and Garfunkle put aside their differences and went on a world tour (though I suspect that even a rumour of a comeback tour would be enough to set them up for the rest of their lives).


The thing is that I really didn’t think all that much of this book. In a sense the things that I loved about Holmes were missing. His cocaine addiction and his brothel visiting habits (as well has being a prize fighter) actually made the character seem really really cool. However, come short story collection number three and all of the sudden he seems to be little more than a cardboard figure that seems to have no personality beyond being able to solve crimes. Okay, they are short stories, and the audience most likely wanted more of these short, easy to digest, crime stories, but I personally wanted something a little more. Further, the cleverness of some of the stories that appeared in the first couple of collections no longer seem to be the case here – they are just good old murder mysteries. Well, not all of them, but there is at least one dead body appearing in most of the stories.


Interestingly Inspector LeStrade makes an appearance now. The only reason that LeStrade comes to mind was because he appeared in an adventure game that I played as a kid called, not surprisingly, Sherlock Holmes. I was a bit baffled as to the significance of this character, but my Dad pointed out that he was a police officer that would always come to the wrong conclusions. Mind you, he didn’t come across as bumbling in that sense, rather lazy. Anyway, two more to go (and a re-read of Hounds of the Baskervilles), but I think I’ll put my next dose of Sherlock Holmes on hold for a little while.

Source: www.goodreads.com/review/show/470322583
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review 2017-02-28 14:21
"Przygody Sherlocka Holmesa" Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
Przygody Sherlocka Holmesa (Sherlock Holmes #3) - Arthur Conan Doyle,Ewa Łozińska-Małkiewicz

Po roku przerwy wracam do przygód najsłynniejszego detektywa wszech czasów. Po pierwszych dwóch powieściach przyszedł czas na zbiór opowiadań. Czy warto sięgać po tą pozycję? Czy w dzisiejszych czasach przygody Sherlocka są dalej aktualne? Czy facet, który ma na imię Conan i tytuł szlachecki mógłby napisać coś kiepskiego? Przekonacie się już za chwilę.


Jak już wspomniałem tym razem zostajemy uraczeni dwunastoma opowiadaniami detektywistycznymi. Jedne traktują o poważnych zbrodniach, inne natomiast opowiadają o prostych, trywialnych wręcz zagadkach, z którymi ludzie przychodzą do Sherlocka. I to on jak można się domyśleć jest tu postawiony na pierwszym miejscu. Dzięki umiejętnościom dedukcji, oraz obserwacji rozwiąże każdą sprawę, chociaż z biegiem czasu widać, że jest coraz bardziej znudzony. Poziom poszczególnych opowiadań jest bardzo zróżnicowany. Są takie, które trzymają w napięciu do końca, ale bywają i prościutkie, których rozwiązania można sie domyśleć juz po kilku stronach. Jak w każdym zbiorze opowiadań bardzo trudno utrzymać ten sam, wysoki poziom. Jednak, pomimo niedociągnięć fabularnych w kilku przypadkach, nadal czytało mi się to bardzo przyjemnie. Dlaczego? Otóż nie ważne były najczęściej okoliczności popełnienia przestępstwa(lub przewinienia) lecz sposób w jaki Sherlock dojdzie do rozwiązania. Proces odtworzenia wydarzeń, oraz umiejętność obserwacji są tu najbardziej wciągającym elementem zbioru opowiadań. Niektórych może drażnić maniera Holmesa, gdy po kilku zdaniach swojego klienta oznajmia, że zna rozwiązanie, ale z nikim się nim nie podzieli. Owszem, jest to wkurzające. Mnie jednak najbardziej bolała długość opowiadań. Ledwo się wkręciłem, to już sprawa została rozwiązana. Widocznie dużo bardziej pasują mi powieści i inne dłuższe fory literackie, gdzie mam czas na blizsze poznanie bohaterów, oraz na zagłębienie się w fabułę. Tak było zarówno w 'Studium w szkarłacie" jak i w "Znaku czterech". Tutaj musiałem potraktować ten zbiór, jako mały przerywnik na wolną chwilę. Albo w przerwie w pracy, albo jedno opowiadanko przed snem. na więcej jednorazowo nie miałem ochoty, wiedząc, że i tak długo nie potrwa. To chyba jedyny mój zarzut.


"Przygody Sherlocka Holmesa" to doskonała lektura gdy macie niecałą godzinkę wolnego czasu. W przerwie na lunch albo przed snem. Krótkie, wartkie opowiadania tak na jeden raz. Na dłuższe posiedzenie się nie nadaje, ale w swojej kategorii polecam serdecznie

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