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A Study in Sherlock (Stories Inspired by the Holmes Canon)

3.74  ·  Rating Details ·  2,839 Ratings  ·  358 Reviews
BESTSELLING AUTHORS GO HOLMES—IN AN IRRESISTIBLE NEW COLLECTION edited by award-winning Sherlockians Laurie R. King and Leslie S. Klinger

Neil Gaiman. Laura Lippman. Lee Child. These are just three of eighteen superstar authors who provide fascinating, thrilling, and utterly original perspectives on Sherlock Holmes in this one-of-a-kind book. These modern masters place the
Kindle Edition, 400 pages
Published (first published October 1st 2011)
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Dec 27, 2011 robyn rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, sherlockiana
I don't know why I keep doing this to myself.

There ARE a couple of decent reads, but this collection is chiefly notable for another atypical and enjoyable SH pastiche by Neil Gaiman, affectionately inspired by his own experience with beekeeping.

The problem is, really, that no matter what criticism writers may cast at Doyle, or at Holmes ("not as interesting as he thought he was") the fact is that Doyle put these stories together really well, and he laid Holmes' dry, analytical deductions out wit
This anthology is a mixed bag. Some of the 16 true stories and one epilogue mini-story are pointless and pedestrian: major mystery writers retelling Conan Doyle canon stories with their own series stars solving the same case or just writing a basic mystery with a few nods in the direction of Holmes references. Fortunately that isn't all the collection has to offer and there are a few true gems and even more entertaining offerings in with the blandness.

Neil Gaiman's "The Case of Death and Honey"
Riju Ganguly
Dec 23, 2011 Riju Ganguly rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of the finest collection of pastiches and other (Sherlock Holmes-inspired) pieces, this book should be lapped up by those who are in love with the Great Detective, and esp. by those who have cherished his present day reincarnation via BBC. The contents are:

(*) An Introduction by Laurie R. King and Leslie S. Klinger

1) YOU'D BETTER GO IN DISGUISE by Alan Bradley: a superb cat & mouse piece enacted by a killer and the Great Detective, with a darker tone that might have upset Sir Arthur.

2) A
Feb 23, 2012 Melanie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, 2012-reads
I liked the premise of this book - stories inspired by Holmes by authors who aren't usually associated with the literary legacy of Holmes - but wasn't entirely sold on the execution. Some of the stories were grand; Neil Gaiman's was, of course, fantastic (but it felt kind of like cheating to include him, since Gaiman won a Hugo for his previous Holmes pastiche; if a Hugo doesn't count as being associated with the literary legacy of Holmes, I'm not sure what does), and I enjoyed the Lee Child, La ...more
Jan 02, 2016 Hayden rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
2.5 stars

Like most short story collections, this one had it's ups and it's downers. Honestly, though, most of these were rather pointless. I didn't even finish "The Mysterious Case of the Unwritten Short Story," given that aside from its basic insipidity, it was kind of a cop-out. And I'd recommend completely skipping"A Triumph of Logic"-- while several of the stories had one or two cases of mild language, that one had some serious, unnecessary swearing. Most of the stories didn't even feel "Hol
Jul 11, 2014 Eric rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Hardcore fans of Sherlock Holmes
The stories I read from this collection are:

'The Case of Death and Honey' by Neil Gaiman

As always, Neil Gaiman's perspective -- in this case, of Sherlock's later years -- is interesting. However, this is not on the same level as his other Holmes pastiche, 'A Study in Emerald.'

'The Mysterious Case of the Unwritten Short Story' by Colin Cotterill

This was a chuckle-worthy graphic novel that I would have enjoyed more if I found it in the funny pages instead of in an otherwise serious Sherlock Holme
Jun 20, 2014 Terence rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: No one; certainly not Sherlock fans
A decidedly "bleh" homage to Sherlock Holmes, which reaches a nadir of unreadability with "The Startling Events in the Electrified City." I couldn't finish the story and thought of giving up on the collection entirely.

I persevered, however, and the remaining stories weren't too bad. Just not "too good."

Except for one story, "The Last of Sheila Locke-Holmes," which has nothing to do with Holmes but is about a young girl dealing with her parents' marital problems, and quite good.

And I will mention
There's only one outstanding story in this volume, and you can read it in Neil Gaiman's Trigger Warning: Short Fictions and Disturbances surrounded by much better stuff. The rest are a ragtag assemblage of stories featuring Holmes, stories set in the margins of the Holmes canon, stories about responses to Holmes as fiction, and stories "inspired by" (to varying degrees of approximation) the Holmes stories. In some of them the links are so tenuous as to be invisible; others are horribly self-indu ...more
Jun 13, 2014 Shubhra rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
In brief, when exploring books, sometimes one discovers gems... and sometimes one ends up with lemons.
This is one lemon. Which is not even worthy of a lemonade.
Except for perhaps two of the sixteen Sherlock-esque pastiches inside, many of which don't even qualify as pastiche.
To conclude: Nothing to see here. Move on.
What sets this collection apart from other Sherlockian collections, is that it’s not so much stories about Holmes and Watson’s adventures, but stories that are inspired by Sherlock Holmes and the canon.

You’d Better Go in Disguise by Alan Bradley: A very well-done story to kick off this collection. It’s written almost entirely in dialogue, and there is very little action, but the tension of the story builds quickly. It starts off with the narrator in a park, when he notices a man watching him fr
This review can also be found on my blog, Snowflakes and Spider Silk

Sherlock Holmes has always been a part of my life - from the time I was little, my parents introduced me to this mystery-solving madman, and I have continued to be intrigued and awed by this eccentric character. It's clear that I'm not the only one, as many of the authors here say the same things. This anthology is quite an eclectic collection of stories based on Sherlock Holmes and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle - from the usual murde
“A Study in Sherlock” is an anthology first published in 2011. The stories allegedly take inspiration from the Holmes canon. The problem is, sometimes the inspiration is so obscure that even the most dedicated Sherlockian can’t spot the bloody thing.

The anthology was edited by noted Sherlockian Leslie S. Klinger (who is currently up to his arse in a lawsuit) and author Laurie R. King. I am being honest that I would think twice about picking up an anthology edited by them again. “A Study in Sherl
Liz Jenkins
This is a collection of short stories by authors experienced in various genres. Unfortunately, for some of them, the art of the short story proves elusive. The first two selections are, frankly, bad (the second in particular, by Tony Broadbent, seems to serve as little more than proof that Mr. Broadbent can use IMDB and is capable of providing extremely awkward expository dialogue which serves no eventual purpose). Luckily, the other authors seem to pick up the slack. Particular highlights are N ...more
Tales Untangled
Jul 31, 2012 Tales Untangled rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed many of the tales written, though some sparked my interest more than others, and the graphic novel left me completely cold. I found that if the stories were too similar I had to read another book in between to avoid confusion and to leave each installment feeling fresh.

One of my favorite stories, As to "An Exact Knowledge of London", was written by Tony Broadbent. This story opens with a man needing a cab wanting to visit the sites famous from Sherlock's adventures. The taxi driver, wh
Dec 30, 2011 Mickey rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I believe it was my mother who got me started reading Sherlock Holmes. I checked out as many of Conan Doyle's books as I could carry home from the library. LOVED him, despite his flaws. (Cocaine? Bad, Sherlock!) As a result of my addiction, I have also read way too many Holmesian pastiches. As with other mythic characters (King Arthur, vampires, and werewolves come to mind), there are lots of good, well written stories/novels out there. There is also a LOT of sheer, deplorable DRECK. (Sherlock i ...more
Dec 25, 2011 Terry rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011-books
Like all short story collections this is a mixed bag. The best stories were not a surprise--Laura Lippman's, Neil Gaiman's, and Alan Bradley's. Lippman's was my personal favorite, one of the only stories that emotionally resonates, and one that ends in a completely different place than it starts. Gaiman's was as well-written, and a nice blend of fantasy and mystery. Bradley's begins the collection and is nice combination of Hitchcock and Holmes, even if the solution is telegraphed from the begin ...more
Nov 22, 2011 Matt rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
King & Klinger's A Study in Sherlock is best thought of as a collection of "Stories Inspired By the Holmes Canon" - which is also appropriately the subtitle of the book. Obviously, all pastiches (by definition) are stories inspired (to one extent or another) by the canon of Sherlock Holmes, but these particular stories vary radically in form, tone, time period and approach from each other while all channeling elements of The Canon.

K & K took some serious curatorial risks but ultimately
Feb 26, 2013 Stacy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I know, I know, I need to get out of the mystery genre! But I think I just needed it for a little while. This is a compilation of short stories on everything Sherlock. Long buried mysteries, modern day adaptations, continuations, etc... every possible thing you can do with Sherlock. I really enjoy short stories and Sherlock so this was a very nice combination. Plus, it was edited by Laurie King who has written the Bee Keeper's Apprentice. Short stories are great because you can pick them up and ...more
These aren't straight pastiches, but I love that about it. But it has the same problem that plagues short story collections; some stories you like, some stories you don't. I like Neil Gaiman's (and that story actually was a pretty straightforward pastiche, if a little... Neil Gaiman-y), and the collection did introduce me to some mystery writers I have heard about but haven't read yet (like Alan Bradley, Dana Stabenow, and Jacqueline Winspear) who did pretty decent stories. The one story that I ...more
Dec 12, 2011 Rozonda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Many may think that it is a pastiche collection, but it is not the case. There are indeed some pastiches-including a magnificetn one by Neil Gaiman- but this collection includes also modern stories modelled after the Sherlockian tales, stories about boys and girls who meet with the Holmes stories at a point of their growing up, Holmes stories set in other places or times and with other characters (for example, a very uncommon version of the Greek Interpreter with Native Canadians as characters), ...more
Not a bad read, but as with most anthologies, there's bound to be a divergence in talent among the various stories presented.

My two favorites (by far) were Lee Child's The Bone-Headed League and Neil Gaiman's The Case of Death and Honey. Both of these were well written, imaginative and clever in their execution of creating a Sherlock Holmes-inspired story. As for the others, they were mildly entertaining or (in the case of three of them) sheer dreck.

All-in-all, an entertaining read for fans of t
I have long been a fan of Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson and jumped at the chance to see what a few authors, whose other books I have read and enjoyed, could do with a Holmesian type story. I wasn't disappointed in the least. Alan Bradley of Flavia de Luce fame, Charles Todd (whose Insp. Ian Rutledge is now a new favourite)and Lee Child - wonderful stories. I also discovered some new authors whose books I will now add to my never-ending To Read list...
Thank you to Laurie. R. King a
Lana Kamennof-sine
Kudos to Laurie R King & Leslie S Klinger for a wonderful compilation, and Kudos to the authors who took up the challenge.

Fascinating to read the variety of genre authors, their backstory connections to the Holmes Canon, and, above all, how they then interpret that.

Colin Cotterill had me laughing out loud - suspect Laurie did too, although has anyone shown it to Larry King?

A thoroughly enjoyable read, confirming my faith in some favourite authors AND introducing me to others I'd not yet read
"What will you do, Holmes, when you've brought to book the last criminal in London?"...
"Elementary, my dear fellow. I have my eye on a cottage in St. Mary Mead."

Let me start by saying that I love Sherlock but am not a purist by any means. I also have been ferociously reading Neil Gaiman's stories and Alan Bradley's Flavia de Luce series this year.

I have to return this book to the library, and therefore could not read the whole thing, but I had to at least read the two short stories by Gaiman an
Jun 03, 2016 Yuhuai rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
A surprisingly bad collection of stories allegedly inspired by the Holmes canon. There are exceptions, but most of the 16 stories in this collection are uninteresting, uninspired, or just plain badly written. Which is surprising given the accolades these authors allegedly come with - Edgars and New York Times bestsellers aplenty.

The stories can be roughly split into two categories. The first are composed of pastiches or something in that vicinity. These stories either expand or provide a retelli
aPriL does feral sometimes
Laurie King, whose books I adore, and Leslie Klinger, contacted 18 well-established mystery authors and asked them to write a short story about or reflecting the character of Sherlock Holmes, originally created by Arthur Conan Doyle. The result is this collection. Equivalent to internet fan fiction in their inventive settings and different first person observers of either Sherlock himself or, more commonly, about youths and adults who use Sherlock Holmes-inspired methodology to solve mysteries, ...more
Jun 10, 2015 Becky rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Horrendous book. I have read the stories by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle so many times and watched Elementary Season 1 and Season 3 twice that I needed something else related to Sherlock Holmes to read, and this is the absolutely wrong choice. Do save your money and time and don't touch this book under any circumstances. Some of the stories are extremely bad I knew what would be going on after several pages. Some stories have such ridiculous plots that if these plots are adapted for Elementary, I am s ...more
Sep 06, 2015 Patty rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have been savoring this collection of short stories, written by several award winning authors that don't normally touch on Sherlock Holmes adventures, including a couple of my favorite authors, Alan Bradley and Neil Gaiman. I liked the take both authors took on creating a unique Sherlock Holmes story. Then I picked out a couple of stories by authors that I knew but hadn't read and decided that I was overdosing on SH. I couldn't retain what had happened in the previous stories. Short Story coll ...more
Apr 18, 2016 Magda rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: books-i-own
Altogether an enjoyable read, but left me feeling a little dissatisfied in the end. Roughly the first half of the book was brilliant, said brilliance culminating in Neil Gaiman's beautiful and mysterious "The Case of Death and Honey", but after that it kind of started to go downhill, and I found many of the stories towards the end frankly quite soporific.
Lizabeth Tucker
Fifteen stories about or with the Great Detective and, of course, the marvelous Doctor John H. Watson. In some cases, simply inspired by Holmes and Watson. A great collection that should be read by all Sherlock Holmes fans. 4 out of 5.

“You’d Better Go in Disguise” by Alan Bradley. A chance meeting in a park has two strangers exchanging observations about others present there. Or is it chance? Told in first person, but not from the view of either Watson or Holmes. An interesting little tale. 3.5
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Edgar-winning mystery writer Laurie R. King writes series and standalone novels. Her official forum is
THE LRK VIRTUAL BOOK CLUB here on Goodreads--please join us for book-discussing fun.

King's most recent novel, Dreaming Spies, sees Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes travel from Japan to Oxford, in a case with international players and personal meaning. The Mary Russell/Sherlock Holmes series foll
More about Laurie R. King...

Other Books in the Series

Stories Inspired by the Holmes Canon (3 books)
  • In the Company of Sherlock Holmes: Stories Inspired by the Holmes Canon
  • Echoes of Sherlock Holmes: Stories Inspired by the Holmes Canon

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