K.D. Absolutely's Reviews > The Hound of the Baskervilles

The Hound of the Baskervilles by Arthur Conan Doyle
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's review
Jul 18, 2009

really liked it
bookshelves: series, 1001-core, british, detective, gothic, 501
Recommended to K.D. by: 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die (2006-2010)
Read from June 26 to July 03, 2012 , read count: 1

Short yet full-packed with action. I am halfway with my quest to read the whole Sherlock Holmes canon and I've read two of his earlier novels and around 30 of his short stories but I think this novel is just the best so far.

What make this different and better are the following: (1) the gothic ingredient. The fearsome hound with burning read eyes that later said to be because of phosphorus. I fear crazy dogs or dogs running amok because I was bitten by one when I was a small boy; (2) Watson, who usually works as Holmes's sidekick, takes the center stage here; and (3) the narration of the scenery is flawless. The moor that is lovely and romantic in Emily Bronte's Wuthering Heights and boring and dead in Frances Hodgson Burnett's The Secret Garden becomes fully alive but truly frightening here. While reading, I could almost hear the sobs of the mysterious woman, see the dark gloomy still night with not a soul stirring in it and the pale moon barely lighting the solitary path to the lonely hill. This story's milieu is downright creepy yet it worked tremendously that I have not seen in his earlier works.

As for the plot, too bad, I was able to guess that the villain was that missing person. This is a short novel but since I've read half of the canon already, while reading the first half of the book, I wrote the names of the characters. (Note: I used to do this in all the books I read before but I stopped because some books do not have many characters or not character-driven and it takes more time to read while doing the writing.) So, when it was mentioned that the dead Charles Baskerville has a missing kin, I put a question mark there and oh yeah baby, I got that one right. I think I am benefiting from reading Sherlock Holmes, I now have keener attention to details.

And oh, my copy of this book is hardbound, the pages are pristine, crisp, thick, and glossy and will artist-like sketches or illustrations. Definitely what a bargain find for only $4 (P180)! That one made reading this book truly memorable too because I am used to read tattered books with yellowed and brittle pages. If the story is good, I don't normally care as long as the book is readable and the pages are intact but hey, if the bargain equally good book looks brand new, what more can I ask for?

Happy 4th of July to my American friends here on Goodreads!
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11/11/2016 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-13 of 13) (13 new)

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message 1: by Apokripos (new) - added it

Apokripos I love this review!

But then again, there are some spoilery bits in it. Haha! :D

Happy Filipino-American Friendship Day to you, Kuya D! ^_^

[If only we were invited at the US Embassy gala. Hak hak hak!]

K.D. Absolutely Thanks, Jzhun. That's why I used "kin" hahahaha. I think that's almost unnoticeable? Let's see if there are others who will complain. Half of my Goodreads friends have read this book!!!

message 3: by Teresa (last edited Jul 03, 2012 08:53PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Teresa Thank you, K.D.! And a happy Filipino-American Friendship Day (how appropriate here!) to you and your friends and family. (I read about the day up after seeing jzhunagev's comment above.)

message 4: by Regine (new) - added it

Regine Happy Filipino American Friendship Day! Is that really a thing?

I really need to read some Arthur Conan Doyle.

message 5: by K.D. (last edited Jul 03, 2012 09:27PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

K.D. Absolutely Thanks, T. We are friends even if our friendship has no specific day to celebrate it! hahaha

Regine, yes it is. Our Independence Day used to be July 4th (instead of June 12th) because July 4th was the day when the American colonizers gave us our independence. So, to commemorate that day, we Filipinos still celebrate it as our Friendship Day with the Americans.

June 12th was the day when the Spaniard colonizers sold us to the Americans hahaha. Poor country; conquered by many countries! (there was Japan too).

message 6: by Barbara (new)

Barbara Who could dislike Holmes and Watson??

I watched fireworks with a recent immigrant from the Philipines with her 4 teen-age children. After telling me how common fireworks are where they lived, they were totally astounded by the display!

K.D. Absolutely B, I agree. Firecrackers and fireworks during New Year's Eve here in the Philippines can make you go to the hospital on New Year's morning because you cannot breath!!! Too many!

However, they are not the expensive type and most of them are illegally made so there are many misfires and people getting hurt especially children.

Oh how I wish I was the father of the 4 teenage children. How I wish a day will come that I will see how you look like in person.

message 8: by Barbara (new)

Barbara If you come to the US, you can visit w. me! I have alteady met a couple of my GR Friends, but none from so far away.
The lady and her children told me of all of the accidents with fireworks- almost daily! It did not surprise me. Sales of these in this country are legislated. You cannot buy them (legally) in Massachusetts, where I live, but nearby New Hampshire does not have this law. At this time of year, we learn of severe accidents with people thinking they are experts. There are fatalities.

K.D. Absolutely Yes, B. I will visit you and I will bring an empty luggage and I am sure it is filled with your books when I leave. :)

message 10: by Milo (new)

Milo To anyone who is a fan, the Annotated Sherlock Holmes helps the reader take in the stories with all the context of a Victorian or Edwardian reader tackling them for the first time. I like your comment about the depiction of the moors in all these books. Evocative escape literature at its best.
I read this out loud to my children during a rainy summer and saw their terrified little faces as the hound approached. Magic.

message 11: by K.D. (new) - rated it 4 stars

K.D. Absolutely Milo wrote: "To anyone who is a fan, the Annotated Sherlock Holmes helps the reader take in the stories with all the context of a Victorian or Edwardian reader tackling them for the first time. I like your com..."

Your children are lucky to have you as their father. :)

Γιώργος Very nice review! I liked it too.

message 13: by K.D. (new) - rated it 4 stars

K.D. Absolutely Γιώργος wrote: "Very nice review! I liked it too."

Thanks! Indeed, it is a nice book.

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