Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The House of Silk (Sherlock Holmes #1)” as Want to Read:
The House of Silk (Sherlock Holmes #1)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The House of Silk (Sherlock Holmes #1)

3.95  ·  Rating Details ·  28,434 Ratings  ·  3,208 Reviews
For the first time in its one-hundred-and-twenty-five-year history, the Arthur Conan Doyle Estate has authorized a new Sherlock Holmes novel.

Once again, THE GAME’S AFOOT…

London, 1890. 221B Baker St. A fine art dealer named Edmund Carstairs visits Sherlock Holmes and Dr John Watson to beg for their help. He is being menaced by a strange man in a flat cap – a wanted criminal
Kindle Edition, 300 pages
Published November 1st 2011 by Mulholland Books (first published January 2011)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The House of Silk, please sign up.

Popular Answered Questions

Campbell See, I disagree. I think the style, the authorial voice, is dead-on Conan Doyle. It's as close to ACD as anyone has ever come. Where it differs is in…moreSee, I disagree. I think the style, the authorial voice, is dead-on Conan Doyle. It's as close to ACD as anyone has ever come. Where it differs is in the choice of subject matter, and that comes down to the more liberal (in its literal sense, all politics aside) nature of society at the beginning of the 21st century.

But that's a minor disagreement. It's a fantastic book and I highly endorse your recommendation.(less)
Wagner Silveira I was enough of a Sherlock fan to jump on this one both eagerness and worry - what if the guy totally destroys the characters? But it was fun, and a…moreI was enough of a Sherlock fan to jump on this one both eagerness and worry - what if the guy totally destroys the characters? But it was fun, and a good page turner. I think Mr. Horowitz made Conan Doyle proud, the same way Mark Frost did with the List of Seven (if you like Sherlock, you might be interested on this one too). (less)

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Sanjay Gautam
Jan 07, 2014 Sanjay Gautam rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It took me a while (perhaps three years) to pick this book from my shelve, and read. I was actually skeptical about this book. On seeing the pastiches of Sherlock Holmes there's always one question that comes to my mind: Could this new author be at par with Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (let alone surpass him)? This book, I accept, does not come at par with the original for die hard fans of Sherlock Holmes. But its not bad either. And to be honest, I liked the story that Horowitz has woven. Its a very ...more

I tip my hat off to you Anthony Horowitz. Having loved your Alex Rider novels because of their brilliant plotting I now see that you are capable of turning your hand to constructing an incredible Sherlock Holmes novel.

In an age where to the majority of people Sherlock Holmes means either Benedict Cumberbatch or Robert Downey Jnr it is refreshing to see some who still recall that Holmes was first and foremost one of the greatest creations of literature. Few who know that still don't know that it
Oct 13, 2012 Arah-Lynda rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: top, lod, i-said
There is so much more to the reading experience than the mere consumption of words on a page.

No…. I love me the look and feel and smell of an actual book. My mind remembers these things, the cover art, the heft and sense of the page, how some fall open and give them selves up to you while others can be heavy, cumbersome, high maintenance reads. I remember the print or type face, whatever the right term is, my mind is able to recreate these images and sensations as I recall a particular experie
Bookdragon Sean
Sherlock Holmes is such a perceptive man. Few thing escape from his gaze and remain hidden from view; no trails become cold or dead as nothing eludes him because he is the master of deduction. Anthony Horowitz, like Holmes, is also a perceptive man because he has re-created the legendary consulting-detective with as much skill and finesse as Sir Arthur Conan Doyle did himself.

Horowitz has breathed new life into Sherlock Holmes


I recognise that this is a bold claim to make but, nonetheless, it is
Aug 05, 2015 Steve rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Much game has been afoot post-dating Arthur Conan Doyle’s brilliant creation. As everyone knows, countless movies, books and shows have been produced featuring the great detective with varying degrees of consistency. But before Anthony Horowitz, none had had the blessing of the ACD estate. Why him, you may ask? I suspect it has something to do with the fact that he’s very good – a professional writer since the age of 20, an OBE honoree, creator and writer of one of my favorite TV series ever (Fo ...more
Hasham Rasool
I love this book Alhamdulillah.

I respect both authors: Horowitz and Conan Doyle.

If you haven't read Sherlock Holmes books/ complete of Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle then you should read Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes books first then when you have finished reading it then read this book.

If anyone who is a huge fan of Sherlock Holmes then I would recommend you to read this book. Trust me you will love this book.

I would recommend anyone who really likes to read crime fiction to
Apr 01, 2012 Terry rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2012-books
A frustrating novel--Horowitz gets the style mostly right, and the plot moves at a nonstop clip, but the mystery itself is disappointing. From the very beginning, I had an inkling of where the story was going, lessening both the suspense and the emotional impact that the novel could generate. While there were some clever twists along the way--Holmes' time in prison, for example--even in these examples it felt as if Horowitz was simply reacting to other plots rather than coming up with something ...more
K.J. Charles
That is not what 'egregious' means. Or 'ribaldry'. Or 'infer'. The artist is not spelled Pissaro, and opium was legal in 1890 so smuggling it would have been uniquely pointless. The sexual mores are ahistorical, which is a major problem if the whole plot hinges on 'we must kill everyone to keep our secret'.

I don't usually nitpick edits but really, if you're going to presume to ventriloquise Holmes, there's no space for sloppy English and failed fact checking. And no excuse for the old 'criminal
Jamie Bernthal
Jun 16, 2013 Jamie Bernthal rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
First off: Arthur Conan Doyle would never have written this novel. Book length, paragraph structure, and an emphasis on over-explained historical detail mark this out as pastiche, however reverent. But that in itself doesn't matter: Arthur Conan Doyle is dead. Much as we might like to read another work by him, we won't (except for John Smith and the like, but, really.... no). Sherlock Holmes means different things to us now so an attempt to mimic his creator's style, which cannot be successful, ...more
Dec 05, 2014 Mona rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
As Good or Better than the Original Conan Doyle Stories

Anthony Horowitz has done a brilliant and masterful job of recreating the world of Sherlock Holmes and his sidekick, Dr. John Watson.

He was evidently endorsed by the Conan Doyle estate to write a brand new Sherlock Holmes story.

He's succeeded admirably. The prose is crisp, and the story's pacing and tension keep us involved through the entire bumpy journey.

I'll try to avoid spoilers by only giving the bare outlines of the story and chara
This is Jeremy Brett as Sherlock Holmes.


Now, despite the fact that Basil Rathbone was the first Sherlock I ever saw, Brett is the best Sherlock, hands down. He is always in motion. He's brillant. If you haven't seen him, rent the DVDs now.

Rent them before you see this book because Horowitz worships at this altar. The introduction contains a nod to the Granda production that featured Brett.

Is Horowitz as good as Doyle? Well, no. But he is close (and sometimes Doyle wasn't as good as himself). Hor
Lance Greenfield
From the first word, the style, the tone, the characters, the language, the inter-twining of plots and sub-plots and the little puzzles and deductions in which Holmes has always excelled, are all faithfully and skilfully adhered to by Anthony Horowitz. The result is superb and delightful.

The author even takes great care to avoid the use of diminutives in exactly the same way as Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. For example, he writes “has not” rather than “hasn’t.” This minute attention to replication of
Apr 16, 2017 Connie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Anthony Horowitz has written a new mystery story about Sherlock Holmes. It's 1915, and an older Dr John Watson is setting down his memories about another Sherlock Holmes adventure. In the preface Watson tells us that he did not write about this case earlier because "the events which I am about to describe were simply too monstrous, too shocking to appear in print. They still are. It is no exaggeration to suggest that they would tear apart the entire fabric of society and, particularly at a time ...more
Ivonne Rovira
Feb 28, 2015 Ivonne Rovira rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle wrote four novels and 56 short stories featuring Sherlock Holmes; while such an output might have been sufficient for a lesser light, fans of the Great Detective have been clamoring for more for more than a century now. Authors ranging from Tod Browning to Roger Zelazny — B to Z, as it were — have featured Holmes in their own work.

Now comes Anthony Horowitz. While not getting Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s voice exactly right (only Laurie R. King seems able to do so), Horowitz
Jan 25, 2015 Tally rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was really good. The style felt very similar to Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's; maybe slightly more modern, but this was still set in Holmes' usual time period. The descriptions were incredible. I've never been to London, and obviously not during that time period, but I could easily picture the fogged streets, horse-drawn buggies and Victorian mansions. The mystery was tautly portrayed and kept me interested throughout. I never lost interest, not even during the slower parts. Highly recommended, ...more
Being a great fan of the Holmesian 'game being afoot' i opened this with 'expectant trepidation'. I was not, as Watson might put it, to be disappointed on either count. There was a breathless excited quality about the story which swept you along but in the end I feel it fell flat. Horowitz it seemed to me, without giving away too much of the main story, just leapt onto the easy bandwagon of twenty first century bete noires. It was predictable and uninspired.

Holmes' solving and sorting of the tw
Jul 26, 2015 Andrew rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I started reading this with I admit a hint of trepidation - I had heard of this book at what had seemed a time of highly publicised "sequels" being authorised by various famous estates - from Austin to Christie it seems no literary legacy seemed safe from a famous author writing an authorised sequel. Now I will admit that these works have been met with praise and eagerness all round but you cannot blame me for being just a little suspicious and this was a perfect example.

So here I am years later
Susan Johnson
There are certain types of book genres that I do not particularly care for-romance, science fiction and fantasy come to mind. The type of genre that I loathe though is when authors take on another author's characters and try to mimic them. There is a plethora of examples- Rex Stout's Nero Wolfe, Robert B. Parker's Spenser, and Daphne DuMaurier's Rebecca. I could go on and on. Of course they have been approved by the author's estate because the heirs want the $$$. This is one of those books. It ...more
This was an excellent Sherlock story and Derek Jacobi was most excellent as the narrator. I recommend this audiobook to any fans of Sherlock Holmes stories.
Mar 24, 2012 Hannah rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mysteries, 2012-reads
A highly readable and (more importantly) enjoyable Holmes pastiche from the pen of Anthony Horowitz, who wrote the "Foyle's War" TV mystery series. As with my first foray with Laurie R. King, I'm always slightly leary of venturing out of the original Holmes canon to find more stories about one of my favorite detectives. Thankfully Horowitz, like King, has managed to create a well crafted story while staying true to the "spirit" of Sherlock and company with this novel. I hope he will follow up wi ...more
A fine art dealer comes begging for Sherlock’s help, as he has been menaced by a strange man; a wanted man that has followed him all the way from America. Art dealer named Edmund Carstairs then finds his home robbed, family threatened and then his client murdered. Unwillingly Holmes and Watson find themselves in a conspiracy connecting London to the Boston underground by an opium den known as the House of Silk.

For the first time in One hundred and twenty five years the Arthur Conan Doyle Estate
My rating: 4.5 of 5 stars

‘Show Holmes a drop of water and he would deduce the existence of the Atlantic. Show it to me and I would look for a tap. That was the difference between us.’

In London, during the Autumn of 1890, Holmes and Watson are investigating a seemingly ordinary crime involving rare art and of course murder. Their investigation manages to take them far from the beaten path and propels them straight into a most horrific ongoing crime involving The House of Silk. They hit a brick
Feb 05, 2012 F.R. rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I think I had a mini-rant about this book when it was first announced. The BBC, if I remember rightly, had cravenly following the PR line that said that this is the first new Sherlock Holmes novel since Conan-Doyle hung up his quill (and thought, no doubt, Thank God I don’t have to write another bloody Sherlock Holmes story).

But a friend gave it to me for me for my birthday and I thought it would be churlish not to read it.

As a Holmes novel I didn’t find it the most convincing. For a start it’s
Sophie Narey (Bookreview- aholic)
Published: November 2011
Author: Anthony Horowitz
Recommended for: fans of detective novels

I got this book as a present and as soon as I saw it I started to read it, I thought that it was an absolutely amazing book to read. It is very well written, keeps hold of your attention. Anthony Horowitz does an amazing job of reviving Sherlock Holmes, he does Arthur Conan Doyle proud,he has captured the style of writing perfectly and makes the storyline really enjoyable. It is a must read for people of all
Lashaan Balasingam (Bookidote)
You can find my review on my blog by clicking here.

The number of stories based on the great Sherlock Holmes is astounding. But not all of them are approved by the Arthur Conan Doyle Estate. It’s one hell of a honor for Anthony Horowitz to be grafted onto an author’s legacy like that. The House of Silk is the first book by Anthony Horowitz regarding Sherlock Holmes and John Watson. One can only be happy to see the dynamic duo back in action without it being another pastiche or attempt to freely r
Nov 14, 2011 robyn rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, sherlockiana
First Sherlock Holmes story authorized by the Doyle estate? I did what I rarely do, and ordered a book in hardback, despite the melodramatic title.

I find that the story lives up to the title, however. Melodramatic.

It wasn't actually bad; the characterizations of Holmes and Watson were pretty good, and the secondary characters were largely well-drawn. Unfortunately, the story itself was strangely convoluted; the kinks and jumps are explained in the end, but that doesn't help with the fact that a
Jan 15, 2016 Manveer rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016-reads, mysteries
Sherlock Holmes has always been my favorite criminal investigator, right up there with Tintin. Before I got into this book, I hadn't read any of the Holmes works not written by the great Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. This was my first, and I actually ended up enjoying it.

When I first got into this, I had a few reservations. The first couple of chapters didn't help at all either. The fear that it wouldn't live up to the expectations was always there. But the book recovered pretty quickly. The portrayal
sweet jane
Nov 12, 2015 sweet jane rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Η υπόθεση ξεκινά όπως ακριβώς και στις παλιές ιστορίες του Ντόιλ, ένας άντρας επισκέπτεται τον Χόλμς στο διαμέρισμα της Baker Street, τρομαγμένος του εξομολογείται ότι κάποιος τον παρακολουθεί. Ο Χόλμς αναλαμβάνει την υπόθεση και μια σειρά από περίεργα γεγονότα τον οδηγούν σε μια οδυνηρή ανακάλυψη, στον Οίκο του Μεταξιού, ένα μέρος σχεδόν σατανικό και απόλυτα επικίνδυνο για τον ταραγμένο κόσμο της Αγγλίας. Αφηγητής είναι όπως πάντα ο Γουάτσον, ενώ στο δράση θα δούμε, σε ενεργότερη αυτή τη φορά μ ...more
Ann Girdharry
Jan 16, 2016 Ann Girdharry rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is a great departure from Horowitz's usual style. I was sucked into the atmosphere of 1890s, smoggy London and loved the attention to small (historic) details which made the story feel so atmospheric and authentic. I've not read any Conan Doyle so only knew Sherlock Holmes by his reputation. Well, I wasn't disappointed.
The story is conveyed wholly from the point of view of Watson (Sherlock's doctor companion) and I enjoyed Watson's quirky observations of Holmes and his humour and his
Corruption, collusion, conspiracies. Things are not what they seem, but they never are in Sherlock Holmes's world, and this novel, inspired by the cases of Holmes and Watson, follows that path.
The case is narrated many years later by Watson; he has retired, Holmes is long dead, as are most others who were involved. Watson writes that because it was one of the most horrible cases they've ever solved, he waited until that late date to recount it. The novel moves quickly; the plot devices work re
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
  • Dust and Shadow: An Account of the Ripper Killings by Dr. John H. Watson
  • The Patient's Eyes
  • A Study In Lavender: Queering Sherlock Holmes
  • Professor Moriarty: The Hound of the D'Urbervilles
  • The Whitechapel Horrors
  • Gaslight Grimoire: Fantastic Tales of Sherlock Holmes
  • The Further Adventures of Sherlock Holmes: The Seventh Bullet (The Further Adventures of Sherlock Holmes)
  • Sherlock Holmes and the Ice Palace Murders: From the American Chronicles of John H. Watson, M.D.
  • The Perils of Sherlock Holmes: Short Stories
  • The Oriental Casebook of Sherlock Holmes
  • A Study in Sherlock: Stories Inspired by the Holmes Canon
  • The Further Adventures of Sherlock Holmes: The Titanic Tragedy
  • The Angel of the Opera
  • The Sherlockian
  • The Revenge of the Hound: A Sherlock Holmes Mystery
  • Oscar Wilde and the Vatican Murders (The Oscar Wilde Murder Mysteries #5)
  • The Private Life Of Sherlock Holmes
  • The Secret Journals of Sherlock Holmes
Anthony Horowitz, OBE is ranked alongside Enid Blyton and Mark A. Cooper as "The most original and best spy-kids authors of the century." (New York Times). Anthony has been writing since the age of eight, and professionally since the age of twenty. In addition to the highly successful Alex Rider books, he is also the writer and creator of award winning detective series Foyle’s War, and more recent ...more
More about Anthony Horowitz...

Other Books in the Series

Sherlock Holmes (2 books)
  • Moriarty (Sherlock Holmes #2)

Share This Book

“Show Holmes a drop of water and he would deduce the existence of the Atlantic. Show it to me and I would look for a tap. That was the difference between us.” 78 likes
“Childhood, after all, is the first precious coin that poverty steals from a child.” 61 likes
More quotes…