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Moriarty (Professor Moriarty #3)

3.38 of 5 stars 3.38  ·  rating details  ·  298 ratings  ·  38 reviews
John Gardner's Moriarty is a posthumous novel, and that is a shame -- for several reasons. One, because it is the last book we will see from one of the most protean of crime thriller writers, a man who made a mark in a variety of different genres and whose prolific output never suffered a slackening of quality (as was the case with so many of his contemporaries and predece ...more
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published November 10th 2008 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (first published January 1st 2008)
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Readable, not not something I'd recommend. The novel didn't really capture the sense of Holmesian Victorian London that I was hoping for and it seemed to rely too heavily on a mixture of fan-ish interpretations of the inconsistencies in Conan-Doyle's short stories and an ill-conceived notion that quoting lyrics from the popular songs of the day would somehow create a sense of authentic atmosphere. As a piece of fan-fiction, it's a decent enough attempt; as a professional novel I felt it fell far ...more
Whew. This was not good. Posthumous, perhaps. I think it was not edited before being released. Our protagonist is a bad guy, but once that's been developed we find the guys against him are child slavers and "baby farmers" (wtf?). There are hundreds of period songs injected seemingly at random into the text, and no suspense created before major plot advancements. Truly weak work. No Sherlock, and NOT in the style of ACD.

The very meaty story of Moriarty's return to London and his attempt to regain his influence as the crime emperor of The Big Smoke. Be prepared. Found it rather uncomfortable at times.
Stuart Douglas
The big list of Stuff I Like includes Doctor Who, David Bowie, historical fiction, seventies telly and classic crime novels (a combination of all of these in one would be the perfect product for me). So I'm inclined to be attracted to things like John Gardener's 'Moriarty', the third and final book in a series which tracks the career of Sherlock Holmes' nemesis after he (allegedly) survived his encounter with the Great detective at the Reichenbach Falls.

Don't be put off by the fact this is the e

SHERLOCK HOLMES FANS DO NOT READ THIS BOOK. It's crap--one of the worst books I've read in a long time. Admittedly Sherlock & related pastiches are always a gamble, & this book was a losing one. There is only the thinnest of plot lines thru the entire novel, & Gardner endlessly introduces character after character, while only developing Moriarty himself. Furthermore, Mr. Gardner seems much too fond of prurient sexual topics & descriptions, many of which would have made his 007 b
Sherlock Holmes isn't the only one who survived Reichenbach Falls. After a long absence, James Moriarty returns to London to discover someone has taken over while he was gone...Idle Jack Idell, an impoverish baronet. Now it's up to the Napoleon of Crime to get his lost sheep back into the fold, dispatch those who refuse to return, and discover the traitor in his midst.

This novel reads like a Victorian version of The Godfather with plenty of turn-of-the-century turns for criminals and crimes so t
Interesting reading... Moriarty as a Victorian-era Godfather. Don't expect any adventures with Holmes; this novel focuses squarely on his nemesis, James Moriarty and his numerous dark adventures. The book wrapped up with something of a let-down, almost as if Gardner was nearing the bell on a timed essay. That aside, a good, fast story that will leave you very grateful you weren't there in person.
A very badly written book. The only thing that kept me going was the semi-interesting plot.
Wayland Smith
Gardener was a great writer, and really good at capturing the tone of other people's work. I first ran across him when he was writing the James Bond books. When I heard he'd written in the Holmes world, I had to check it out.

As the title suggests, this isn't really about Holmes himself. James Moriarity, Holmes' arch-foe, is the center of this story. He battles corruption and deceit inside his own organization. It's a very good thriller, with some unexpected twists and turns.

Recommended for peop
Jim Richards
... I picked this up having slithered through "The Return ..." and "The Revenge ..." ... being a Star Wars fanboy (funny at my age) my trip through the "dark side" would have felt incomplete had I been satisfied with just that ...

... this was NOT a reprint ... it was published to complete the trilogy (interest leading to the subsequent reprints), despite Gardner not having FINISHED it, quite ... nonetheless, it does its job ... BUT, surprisingly, it succeeds as a stand-alone novel, taking place
Charles Turek
May 12, 2013 Charles Turek rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: anyone over 17
Shelves: read-enjoyed
It's January 1900, and Professor Moriarty is getting up there in years. He's got a son at Rugby and he's just decided to make a return to London and reclaim a criminal empire that has gotten a little frayed around the edges. No longer at constant odds with the police or one Sherlock Holmes, Moriarty is more interested in finding out who among his Praetorian Guard is a traitor and how many of his former criminal family he can coerce away from his competitor in the evil genius game, Idle Jack Idel ...more
So wanted to like this, but I simply couldn't. I spent well over a week with this, and given that I am normally a very speedy reader, it was so disappointing that I found it very, very difficult to enjoy this. The characters seemed stilted and forced, Moriarty himself was more like a supervillain of the comic variety (not as in funny but as in strip cartoon mode), seemingly invincible and rather more like a Mafia boss. Gardner has researched the period impeccably but the actual plot of Idle Jack ...more
Brad McKenna
Everytime I see a book about Sherlock Holmes, or in this case his nemesis, I have to pick it up. I just wish I picked up the first book in this series first. Not that I couldn't follow along, it's just I'm not used to footnotes in non-classical fiction.

This book Moriarty does battle with a new kingpin, Idle Jack, who encroached on The Professor's territory whilst he was away. We see Jack only thrice in the whole book and the main action centers around Moriarty trying to find the mole in his "fa
Marthe Bijman
John Gardner established himself by writing spin-offs of another more famous literary character, James Bond. It takes a special skill to avoid odious comparisons to the original author and Gardner does not always distinguish himself. In “Moriarty”, he starts the novel by an attempt at authentication, describing the unearthing of the original journals of Prof. Moriarty, in a style reminiscent of the announcement of the “Hitler Diaries” in 1983. The problem is of course, that Moriarty was a fictio ...more
OK but nothing to write home about. Probably the death of the author had something to do with the abrupt ending. He was planning a 4th book in this series but didn't make it. Unless you were a fanatic about reading variations on the Sherlock theme - I wouldn't bother.
An interesting detailed story of Professor Moriarty's return to criminal power in London in 1911. Really graphic and unexpected plot twists with well developed characters. Written in a diary form so it sometimes lost me in the backstory. I left it on a park bench in Surrey for a new reader.
Almost. The plot is great, the characters interesting and full-bodied, and Moriarty is one of the most interesting characters in the entire world of fiction. Sadly, the author's need to show off his research into the era's slang stilts dialogue and detracts from the plot. The end result is choppy writing and poor flow in an otherwise enjoyable book.
Jason Arnett
I liked Gardner's writing well enough but the story moved slowly and it didn't pull me in right away. It's apparently the third book in a series. I gave up 70 pages in, which I don't like to do, but I wanted to get on to something I've been anxious to read. I'll give it another try later on, but for now it's shelved.
eh, I just don't see the point of a book set in the Sherlock Holmes universe, but lacking an appearance by Holmes himself.

The book itself was kind of slow-moving, especially compared to Conan Doyle's stories and books. There just wasn't enough dramatic tension.
Kay Robart
A book about Professor Moriarty without Sherlock Holmes? That's not the only disappointment in this dull novel that features brutish and uninteresting characters.

See my complete review here:
Emilie Leming
I know I've read John Gardner's books on Moriarty before & was enthralled. But, did he only write two or were there three? He's gone now & the inside cover page only lists two, neither of which is the title of this one... anybody know???
Not a bad read but very clearly unfinished at the time of the author's death as the last half of it is very uneven in pacing. Nicely evocative writing that has convinced me to go out and find other John Gardner stuff.
Sep 11, 2011 Douglas rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Sherlock Holmes readers
Shelves: mystery
This story only briefly mentions Sherlock Holmes; it is mostly about James Moriarty and his life after he and Holmes battled after "The Final Solution".
Sometimes it was slow, but overall it was a pleasant read.
R.B. Harkess
Second time around for me with this one. Surprised by the relatively low rating. Loved the original take on the classic Holmes trope, and thought it a very believable telling of Moriarty's life.
I'm not certain what I expected but this did not give me the feel of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's character and only marginally placed me in the Lindon of the master sleuth Holmes.
Doris Pearson
This is a keeper book for me, I love the old Victorian terms and slang. Always wondered about Moriarty in the Holmes books, Now I Know! An incredibly enoyable book.
The Moriarty from the Sherlock Holmes tales in his own book. There are two others that came before this one that I must now read.
Tim Maidment
Clear precise historically researched and easy to read. A great feel for Holmsian London, looking up from the underbelly
John McKenna
You'll have a great time reading this one. I throughly enjoyed the romp through the underworld of turn-of-the-century London.
I found the writing dull (more telling than showing) and the story flat. I gave up reading on page 88.
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Before coming an author of fiction in the early 1960s, John Gardner was variously a stage magician, a Royal Marine officer and a journalist. In all, Gardner has fifty-four novels to his credit, including Maestro, which was the New York Times book of the year. He was also invited by Ian Fleming’s literary copyright holders to write a series of continuation James Bond novels, which proved to be so s ...more
More about John Gardner...

Other Books in the Series

Professor Moriarty (3 books)
  • The Return of Moriarty (Professor Moriarty, #1)
  • The Revenge of Moriarty (Professor Moriarty, #2)
License Renewed (John Gardner's Bond, #1) Role of Honor (John Gardner's Bond, #4) Nobody Lives Forever (John Gardner's Bond, #5) GoldenEye (John Gardner's Bond, #15) For Special Services (John Gardner's Bond, #2)

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