Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Bending the Willow: Jeremy Brett as Sherlock Holmes” as Want to Read:
Bending the Willow: Jeremy Brett as Sherlock Holmes
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Bending the Willow: Jeremy Brett as Sherlock Holmes

4.41  ·  Rating Details  ·  165 Ratings  ·  15 Reviews
Jeremy Brett's portrayal of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's famous detective is widely recognised as the best yet seen. Before his untimely death in 1995, Brett had made the part his own, all the time battling against the manic depression which had plagued him for many years. Bending the Willow' examines how this brilliant actor channelled the demons of his debilitating illness i ...more
Hardcover, 192 pages
Published November 1st 1996 by Calabash Press (first published 1996)
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 Bending the Willow, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Bending the Willow

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 498)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Mary Rocco
Jan 04, 2013 Mary Rocco rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read it because Jeremy Brett was my friend. It didn't contain any glaring falsehoods. Glad to see Jeremy remembered.
May 08, 2013 Pamela rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
This is a great book about an actor that was over looked by Brittain for all his many brilliant accomplishments. The role of Sherlock Holmes in television, and movies the most famous.His inspiring, and troubled life was an interesting mix of joy, and sadness, He slowly grew to ill to keep acting due to a heart condition, and depressive mental illness that he was not properly treated for.He managed to still work, and bring his brilliance to a character that few can achieve, His Holmes will always ...more
Aug 06, 2015 Kate rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Jeremy Brett's performance as Sherlock Holmes for Grenada Television in the 80s and 90s is the definitive performance of the Great Detective. This was the first time strictly the canon was filmed and it has never been replicated since. The later series may have lost their way a little bit, and it is really hard to watch Brett act in these episodes as his health deteriorates, but there is no other Canon Holmes out there to me. This book isn't a biography of Jeremy Brett but it is a book about his ...more
✘✘ Sarah ✘✘ (former Nefarious Breeder of Murderous Crustaceans)
This book provides fantastic insight into the Sherlock series and Jeremy Brett's personality. I'd seen Brett in "My Fair Lady" but, like many others, had no idea it was him until reading this book. I didn't know Brett was manic depressive and it was interesting to read how his illness affected the filming of the series. The similarities between Brett's behaviour and the way he portrayed Holmes in some episodes are particularly striking. It was also very interesting to read the comments of those ...more
Jan 27, 2014 Stevie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: biographies, own, kindle
What a great book! David Stuart Davies manages to capture the reader with deep insights of Jeremy Brett and David Burke/Edward Hardwicke as Holmes and Watson, along with facts about production and filming of the Granada show. But he doesn't stop there. Davis peppers it with anecdotes from people who worked with Jeremy as well as his own experiences and newspaper reviews. He manages to treat Jeremy's illness with respect. This book made me cry, but it also made me laugh.
Megan Reichelt
This book was incredibly sad. It chronicles the life of Jeremy Brett, a personal hero of mine, as he wrestles with the character of Holmes throughout his career, from energetic, inspired and intellectual performances in the early episodes to his untimely death.

It is easy to romanticize Brett as Holmes, picturing him struggling with the character as he has so often described, and that the struggle is what drove him to several mental breakdowns, but it was not so. His manic depression, along with
Riju Ganguly
Feb 16, 2013 Riju Ganguly rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I had read about this version, but had actually read only the Kindle version. An outstanding book, depicting an outstanding actor of our times. Recommended.
Ed Nemo
Jul 02, 2011 Ed Nemo rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: biograghy
A little dry, but if you are a fan of Jeremy Brett, (The BEST Sherlock Holmes), this is a must read.
Merri-Todd Webster
Davies' account of actor Jeremy Brett in his most famous role is short but dense. The book focuses squarely on Brett's work as Holmes in the justly lauded Granada television series of the 1980s-90s. It addresses his relationships with his two co-stars, David Burke and Edward Hardwicke (who befriended Brett during some of the most difficult periods of his life), while avoiding any discussions of his sexuality. The account of Brett's mental illness and his determination to keep working is almost h ...more
Patrick Ewing
Oct 02, 2015 Patrick Ewing rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wonderful stories and insights about Jeremy Brett and the making of the series.
Sagar Jethani
Feb 10, 2012 Sagar Jethani rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: biography
A heartfelt, bittersweet tribute to Jeremy Brett-- the actor who brought Sherlock Holmes to life from 1984 until his untimely death of heart failure in 1995. A considerable amount of foreknowledge concerning the Granda production of Sherlock Holmes is required to make this book intelligible to the reader. Required reading for serious fans.
Jan 06, 2012 Linda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Extremely interesting book on Jeremy Brett's portrayal of Sherlock Holmes in the Granada Television series. Interviews with Jeremy Brett, his fellow actors and information on his battle with manic depression.
Jun 03, 2011 Jake rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Excellent study of the peerless Jeremy Brett and his superb turn as Sherlock Holmes in the Granada TV series of the 1980s and 1990s.
Christopher Roden
Jan 15, 2012 Christopher Roden rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Re-read this again today, as I've just produced an eBook version. Still holds up as a fine study of the man and the series.
Feb 14, 2012 Leyla rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Made me watch the whole series again. Beautiful tribute to Brett. Makes you sad he is gone.
Izabela Solecka
Izabela Solecka marked it as to-read
Apr 30, 2016
Mari-Ann Raun
Mari-Ann Raun marked it as to-read
Apr 30, 2016
Hayley Shaver
Hayley Shaver marked it as to-read
Apr 28, 2016
Laura Merchant
Laura Merchant marked it as to-read
Apr 27, 2016
Claire Scorzi
Claire Scorzi marked it as to-read
Apr 25, 2016
Melinda is currently reading it
Apr 25, 2016
Kaylene marked it as to-read
Apr 21, 2016
Heraklia marked it as to-read
Apr 18, 2016
Savannah marked it as to-read
Apr 16, 2016
Tom marked it as to-read
Apr 11, 2016
B marked it as to-read
Apr 04, 2016
BrokenTune marked it as to-read
Apr 03, 2016
Christian marked it as to-read
Mar 30, 2016
Jacob marked it as to-read
Mar 28, 2016
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 16 17 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • The Man Who Created Sherlock Holmes: The Life and Times of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
  • The Private Life Of Sherlock Holmes
  • Sherlock Holmes and Philosophy: The Footprints of a Gigantic Mind
  • Arthur Conan Doyle: A Life in Letters
  • Teller of Tales: The Life of Arthur Conan Doyle
  • The Detective and The Woman: A Novel of Sherlock Holmes
  • The Secret Files of Sherlock Holmes
  • Sherlock Holmes: The Hidden Years
  • Från Holmes till Sherlock
  • Gaslight Arcanum: Uncanny Tales of Sherlock Holmes
  • The New Annotated Sherlock Holmes, Volume II: The Short Stories
  • Steampunk Holmes: Legacy of the Nautilus
  • A Study In Lavender: Queering Sherlock Holmes
  • The Bedside Companion to Sherlock Holmes
  • Conan Doyle, Detective: The True Crimes Investigated by the Creator of Sherlock Holmes
  • Sherlock Holmes and The Missing Snowman
  • The Night Calls
  • My Dearest Holmes
David Stuart Davies was born in 1946. He was a teacher of English before becoming a full-time editor, writer, and playwright. Davies has written extensively about Sherlock Holmes, both fiction and non-fiction. He is the editor of Red Herrings, the monthly in-house publication of the Crime Writers' Association.
More about David Stuart Davies...

Share This Book