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The Mandala of Sherlock Holmes: The Adventures of the Great Detective in India and Tibet

4.09  ·  Rating Details ·  1,605 Ratings  ·  78 Reviews
In 1891, the British public was horrified to learn that Sherlock Holmes had perished in a deadly struggle with the archcriminal Professor Moriarty at the Reichenbach Falls. Then, to its amazement, he reappeared two years later, informing a stunned Watson, 'I traveled for two years in Tibet, therefore, and amused myself by visiting Lhasa.'

Nothing has been known of those mis
Paperback, US, 280 pages
Published January 9th 2003 by Bloomsbury (first published 1999)
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Dec 23, 2011 Ensiform rated it it was ok
Shelves: fiction, mystery
A pastiche of Holmes, set in India and Tibet. Taking as his starting-point the return of Holmes after his supposed death in the canon, wherein the detective reveals that he was traveling in Tibet under the name Sigurson, Norbu recreates those lost years in the Holmes chronicles. His narrator this time is none other than Hurree Mookerjee, from Rudyard Kipling’s Kim (which, lamentably, I’ve not read). For the first half of the book, Norbu succeeds in weaving the two worlds, that of Victorian super ...more
Fiona Ingram
Aug 14, 2012 Fiona Ingram rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Sherlock Holmes aficionados refer to the period from 1891 to 1894--the time between Holmes's disappearance and presumed death in The Adventure of the Final Problem (at the hands of Moriarity at Reichenbach Falls) and his reappearance in The Adventure of the Empty House--as "the Great Hiatus."

So, what really happened during these lost years?

Holmes tells Dr. Watson in laconic fashion: "I travelled for two years in Tibet, therefore, and amused myself by visiting Lhasa and spending some days with th
Micky Sahi
Apr 09, 2015 Micky Sahi rated it liked it
Before I begin, I would like to say that Sir Doyle was and still is the finest writer on Holmesian stories. But now, I have to try with all my might and dare to extend this and say that Mr Norbu’s novel succeeded in showing the Holmesian tradition in a different yet interesting light. He even managed to replicate S.H behaviour and conversational style. “On the contrary my dear Huree!”

Also, this is my first fiction based on Tibetan lands. Being a practicing Hindu, I’ve always been fond of the maj
Bernie Gourley
Dec 01, 2014 Bernie Gourley rated it it was ok
I gave this book the lowest rating that I’ve ever given a book I reviewed. However, there’s a selection bias at work. I don’t finish (and rarely start, for that matter) books that are so horrible that they’d get a lesser rating. Ergo, any book that I finish and review has some redeeming qualities. I’ll leave it to the reader to determine whether these redeeming qualities will outweigh the deficiencies of story in this book.

The Mandala of Sherlock Holmes takes our beloved detective out of London
Rogue Reader
Apr 17, 2011 Rogue Reader rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mystery-india
I'm delighted to report (and embarrased to admit) that it was Sibyl R with our Monday Night Mystery group who put the name to the game, and made me aware of the Sherlock Holmes pastiche, a genre of mystery that's a mashup of new fiction based on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's character and setting. Browsing Bookwagon the next weekend - there it was, a table-top of Sherlock Holmes pastiches, where I found Norbu's The Mandala of Sherlock Holmes. Perfect.

The Mandala of Sherlock Holmes is the tale of Hol

Sep 26, 2011 Rozonda rated it it was amazing
It is only recently that people has started to realize that, being a "creature" of one of the most notorious spiritualists ever, Sherlock Holmes must have a spiritual side. People have been too busy with his brains and his heart (or lack thereof) and the orientation of his sexuality. There is much more of Doyle in Sherlock than the author himself would have liked to admit- when he wrote to Joseph Bell to thank him for being the model for Holmes, the wise physician replied "Sherlock Holmes is you ...more
Moram se na žalost pridružiti većini drugih koji su ovu knjigu ocjenjivali. Počinje kao zabavan Holmesovski pastiche, u kiplingovskom okruženju, s daškom haggarda. no, nakon 2/3 knjige autor počinje buncati, mistificirati, telepatija, telekineza, 'neobjašnjive moći uma', reinkarnacije i izgubljene civilizacije. šteta. mogla je biti solidna četvorka. Ovako je malo jača trojka. A neću ni spominjati različite faktuane greške poput otpuštanja sigurnosne kočnice na revolveru, ili punjenja Martini-Hen ...more
Tariq Mahmood
May 20, 2014 Tariq Mahmood rated it it was ok
The story was too predictable and Raj retro. I found the attempts by the author to explain the Tibetan brand of Buddhism too difficult to understand. I also thought that the supernatural powers displayed by both Holmes and Professor Morriety too far fetched and fantastic and did not rhyme at all with Holmes established rational style of deductions. By the end of the book I found I was skipping paragraphs without really missing out much.
Mar 22, 2009 Janellyn51 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this. Shelock as it turns out didn't die in Riechenbach Falls. I was never particularly iterested in Tibet, Nepal or the Himmalayas before, but this book took me there and I really enjoyed the trip. It is an able tale in the continuation of Doyle's Sherlock Holmes.
Oct 02, 2009 Shobha rated it it was amazing
Love the book. Holmes & Hurree from Kim. The colonial love of a Bengali babu towards the imperialists, portrayal of India during the Raj, the writing style, everything about this book charms me. I've read and re-read and re-read it a hundred times so far.
Mar 19, 2013 Lesley rated it really liked it
I'm not sure it entirely lives up to the promise of the idea: the lost years of Sherlock Holmes after the Reichenbach Falls, narrated by the Babu from Kipling's Kim, and very well-done. The denouement, perhaps, evokes Rider Haggard. But still, very enjoyable.
Empress Reece (Hooked on Books)
Feb 22, 2015 Empress Reece (Hooked on Books) rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2015-read
This was one of the better patische's Ive read. If you like Sherlock Holmes, then its a must-read!
Feb 25, 2010 Mila rated it really liked it
Shelves: books-in-2010
what can I say? It's Holmes, it's a great pastiche and it's Holmes! :)
Megan Kelosiwang
Dec 13, 2016 Megan Kelosiwang rated it liked it
This book had all the ingredients for me to love Sherlock, Kipling, Tibet, but it just didn't gel as an experience. The fantasy element to the climax felt a bit silly - I would have preferred a cleverer Holmes solution instead. Loved the concept though.
Denise Spicer
Feb 01, 2017 Denise Spicer rated it liked it
This 1999 novel is the story of Sherlock Holmes in India and Tibet when he went missing after his fight with Moriarty. Very interesting setting and characters (Doyle’s Holmes and Kipling’s Mookerjee) in which Holmes saves the life of a young soon-to-be Dali Lama. Unless you are an EXTREME Holmes-ophile or student of Anglo/India history, this book has way too much extraneous detail such as extensive descriptions of traveling for weeks through India, Tibet, etc. With lots of action and the mysteri ...more
Charles Prepolec
Jan 08, 2012 Charles Prepolec rated it liked it
The basic premise was essentially to document the hows and whys of Holmes visit to Tibet during the great hiatus. The intriguing bit is that the amusing Babu, Hurree Chunder Mookerjee, of Rudyard Kipling's classic work, Kim, narrates the story. As a fan of the Flashman books as well as being interested in the British presence in India, I found the book to be a vital addition to my collection. By making the narrator someone other than Watson, the author did himself a great favour. The biggest fau ...more
Dec 14, 2014 Caitlyn rated it it was ok
When any author other than Arthur Conan Doyle takes on the character of Sherlock Holmes, they must remember exactly who they are dealing with. Sherlock Holmes is, without a doubt, one of the greatest characters in literary history and he must be treated as such. The key to a good Holmes spin-off is remaining true to his brilliant character while adding your own unique flavor. In a sense, "The Mandala of Sherlock Holmes" is successful in this respect. In fact, many of Holmes' lines in the novel a ...more
Mrs. Woodhouse
Oct 13, 2015 Mrs. Woodhouse rated it it was amazing
Shelves: my-own-reads
I bought this book at an author signing and reading at Tibet House NYC 15 years ago, and am delighted it has remained in print. I think it's one of the best Sherlock Holmes pastiches out there.

The author, Jamyang Norbu, is a Tibetan political activist, a former fighter in the CIA-funded guerrilla war against the Chinese government from back in the day, a theater director, writer, and a Holmesian (he's a member of the Baker Street Irregulars). Along with the Holmes canon, he has been a close read
Marilyn F
Dec 27, 2016 Marilyn F rated it liked it
I think it starts out better than it finishes ... good premise and some good Sherlock-Holmsy stuff, but when it gets into all that fantasy - not so much.
Erica Mukherjee
Jul 21, 2009 Erica Mukherjee rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
This book is the latest and most esoteric chapter of Sherlock Holmes’ life. I give credit to the author for filling in those last two blank years in the sleuth’s life. I also credit him for remaining true to Sir Arthur’s unique narrative style. Not only was the dialogue spoken in the same self-conscious British manner, but an Indian Watson was pulled from the pages of Rudyard Kipling’s Kim. This sub-continental Watson fulfilled his given role perfectly; trusting in Holmes’ powers and willing to ...more
Huyen Nguyen
Dec 05, 2012 Huyen Nguyen rated it liked it
Shelves: novel
Điều đầu tiên khiến mình ko thích lắm ở quyển này là việc tác giả đã sd quá nhiều từ địa phương 1-cách-ko-cần-thiết. Nhưng dẫu sao đó cũng chỉ là ấn tượng ban đầu, có thể thích nghi được. Tuy nhiên, mình hoàn toàn ko thích cách Hurree - nhân vật "tôi" trong truyện lí tưởng hoá Holmes lên [thậm chí là thần thánh hoá] như thế! Kể chuyện dưới ngôi thứ nhất là 1 công việc khó, và ko tránh khỏi những nhận xét cảm tính, nhưng mình tin bất cứ người đọc nào cũng cảm thấy tình cảm ngưỡng mộ mà Hurree dàn ...more
El librero de Bolaño lo mostraba, así que había que leerlo. No necesariamente, Bolaño era mala leche algunas veces y le gustaba como a mí dormir y estar rodeado de libros, bueno, lo segundo, lo primero a mí me gusta. Como alucinado fan de Sherlock (Elementary es extraordinaria, debiera ser obligada para todos los que necesiten un entrenamiento deduccionista) y lector perpetuo de Conan Doyle, claro que una nueva aventura del emblemático detective y héroe juvenil (yo lo leí completo ya grandecito ...more
Jul 14, 2012 John rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Mandala of Sherlock Holmes is one of a handful of novels that seeks to illuminate the time Holmes spent hiding out in India and Tibet after his supposed death at the hands of Moriarty. I certainly wasn't expecting much out of it, seeing as I had purchased it at a little souvenir shop during my own visit to India and regarded it as probably nothing more than a novelty item for gullible tourists (like me). To my surprise, TMOSH turned out to be an excellent read in its own right--at least unti ...more
Jun 06, 2014 Joy rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction
Yep, I totally loved this book. Norbu's book brilliantly recounts the mysterious adventures of Holmes in India and Tibet following the Reichenbach fall, as narrated from the point of view of Huree Chunder Mookerjee, a Bengali spy. Norbu brings together Holmes and Huree, also a character in Kipling's fiction, to investigate a Chinese plot against the Dalai Lama himself. This book is so awesome because it interprets Holmes' singular skills at observation, deduction and concentration according to B ...more
Aug 02, 2013 Bam rated it it was ok
Having just finished Rudyard Kipling's Kim, I was delighted to learn about this book which seemed to combine some elements of the story of Kim with a tale about the missing years in the life of Sherlock Holmes, after his supposed death in the fall from Reichenbach Falls with Moriarty.
The story is narrated by the often humorous Huree Chunder Mookerjee (Kim's friend, the Bengali spy. He is assigned to keep an eye on the Norwegian traveler, Sigerson. After Sigerson meets up with Captain Strickland
I enjoyed this, I guess--at least, enough to read the whole thing. But it also...confused me. The first half is fairly straightforward Holmes stuff, only with a character from Rudyard Kipling's Kim taking the place of Watson. But then a little past the halfway mark it becomes more like an adventure novel with mystical elements than a mystery, and Holmes just...doesn't seem much like Holmes anymore. I might have liked this more if I had read Kim, or at least had some familiarity with it. And I mi ...more
Jun 06, 2013 Ubi rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: english, adventure
It is funny when you think of the fact that this is actually an earlier version of a fanfiction in the Sherlock Holmes fandom.

The narrator is a layered person with a history of dabbling in many things and using juridicial vocabulary. He provides all necessary explanation for the different culture backgrounds and local history. One slightly less likely development, making this story possibly set in an AU, is the prominent featuring of the tibetan occultism in a way such that Sherlock performs act
Jul 25, 2008 Gusmenary rated it really liked it
So, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle killed off Sherlock Holmes in The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, right? Truly spectacular death fighting atop a cliff with professor Moriarty. They both tumbled into the abyss and were presumed dead. The public freaked out. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's MOM freaked out and due to public fervor Doyle was persuaded to bring him back. The explanation given is that he faked his own death and went underground for five years. He talks about it for no more than a paragraph, but he ...more
Jan 16, 2013 Ute rated it liked it
The “Mandala of Sherlock Holmes” is written by Tibetan author Jamyang Norbu. The novel tells the story of Sherlock Holmes in Tibet during his “missing years”, when he was presumed dead.
What I enjoyed most about the novel was the voice of the narrator and the description of the journey to Tibet.
Huree Chunder Mookerjee takes the part of Dr. Watson and informs the reader about Sherlock Holmes adventure.
You get a lot of funny side notes and remarks about India and the British presence in India.

I wa
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is it the book? 1 5 Nov 28, 2013 08:17AM  
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Jamyang Norbu (འཇམ་དབྱངས་ནོར་བུ) is a Tibetan political activist and writer, who lived for over 40 years as an exile in India. He now resides in America.

He founded and directed the Amnye Machen Institute, Tibetan Centre for Advanced Studies, Dharamsala. He is the author of Warriors of Tibet, the biography of a Khampa warrior; Illusion and Reality, a collection of his political essays, and the edit
More about Jamyang Norbu...

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