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The House of Silk

(Sherlock Holmes #1)

3.96  ·  Rating details ·  35,428 ratings  ·  3,912 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
Hardcover, First Edition (US/CAN), 294 pages
Published November 2011 by Mulholland Books
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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

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3.96  · 
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 ·  35,428 ratings  ·  3,912 reviews

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Mar 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I knew I had to read more Horowitz after the grand thrill that was Magpie Murders. While by no means a Sherlock Holmes aficionado, I would still call myself an admirer of Arthur Conan Doyle’s work, having read several of his stories in the past. If Doyle’s estate deemed Horowitz worthy of adding a new novel to this master’s canon, then I certainly was on board with it. I am not a writer, but if I were then I would never presume to replicate an author’s work to the extent that my writing was indi ...more
Sean Barrs the Bookdragon
A brilliant 4.5 stars- Horowitz has (somehow) breathed new life into Sherlock Holmes!


When reading this I could imagine that Conan Doyle would be proud of Horowitz’s attempt at Holmes. He has delivered it in such a way that it could easily fit into the Sherlock Holmes story arc and be read with as much joy as the original novels. Indeed, this is as every bit as good as the classic Sherlock Holmes novels that I’ve already read. This really is fan fiction at its finest.

Sherlock Holmes is such a
Sanjay Gautam
Jan 07, 2014 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
Nov 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: xx2018-completed
I purchased this eBook approximately 6 months after it was published – and it has taken me 6 years to finally get around to reading it. Even though I love Anthony Horowitz’s writing. Even though I enjoy the appeal of Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson as much as any lover of Golden Age of Mystery stories. Time does have a way of getting away, and great books are flooded by more great books every single day. As a reader, this makes me very happy – time is far more elastic than we might think, and thi ...more
Oct 13, 2012 rated it it was amazing
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
Jonathan Terrington

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
Aug 05, 2015 rated it really liked it
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
May 01, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 5000-books
Anthony Horowitz shows himself here as a man of many talents. He very skilfully adopts the style and purpose of the original Sherlock Holmes series and produces a book which Arthur Conan Doyle would not have been ashamed of.

The story is told from the point of view of Dr. Watson and his character rings true throughout the book. Other familiar characters are also portrayed as we have come to expect - Sherlock himself, Mycroft, Lestrade and even Moriarty who has a small part.

It was all very enjoyab
Feb 04, 2018 rated it really liked it
I've been a fan of Anthony Horowitz since reading Magpie Murders last year. The guy is a fantastic storyteller. He successfully appropriated Agatha Christie's voice in that instance -which lead me to believe he would be able to assume the voice of Arthur Conan Doyle in this, the first book that the author's estate approved to be written in over a century, featuring Doyle's infamous detective.

I've only read a few of the original Sherlock Holmes mysteries, so I am by no means an expert on Doyle's
Chris Horsefield
Nov 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I have forgotten how many Sherlock Holmes stories I have read over the years hoping that someone might catch the essence of Holmes but always being disappointed to greater or lesser degrees. It backed up my feeling that Conan Doyle had an innate genius that perhaps even he did not appreciate. Some authors have come close - Steven King probably the best - but all have in some way missed the mark and some by a considerable margin.

However Horrowitz has pulled it off beautifully. I always thought of
Jan 09, 2018 rated it liked it

3.5 stars

This is Anthony Horowitz's first addition to the 'Sherlock Holmes' canon and he does a good job capturing the voice of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

As the book opens, Holmes is dead and Watson is an elderly man who's decided to write up one of his friend's old investigations - a case so hush-hush that it can't be released for 100 years.

The 100 years is now up.


The sensitive inquiry begins when Holmes is visited by Edmund Carstairs, a wealthy art dealer who claims he's being stalked by a
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 rated it it was ok
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
Apr 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
About five years ago I read all of the Sherlock Holmes stories in one summer. I listened to them on audio, performed by the marvelous Derek Jacobi. This experience was so rewarding that it got me completely hooked on audiobooks.

Last week I read Magpie Murders by Anthony Horowitz, and loved it so much I looked up his other novels. I was thrilled to see he had written a new Sherlock Holmes mystery, and even better, that the audiobook was performed by Derek Jacobi. Double win!

I was impressed by how
K.J. Charles
Aug 23, 2014 rated it it was ok
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
Dec 03, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: audio, overdrive
I admit that I am not a huge fan of the Sherlock Holmes books, and I was hoping for something more like "Magpie Murders" but this was just straight forward Sherlock Holmes. I liked some of the period detail but the story did seem to drag on. There was a lot of intricate plotting, so if you are a Holmes lover you'll probably enjoy this more than I did. I got a little bored.
Jamie Bernthal
Jun 16, 2013 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
 Li'l Owl
Frightening and oppressive!
One of the most harrowing and dangerous cases that Holmes and Watson have ever come up against! "He had entered a veritable miasma of evil, and harm, in the worst possible way, was to come to us all to soon."

1890 London England. 221 Baker Street.
Art dealer, Edmond Carstairs, comes to Holmes and Watson for help in discovering the identity a man who has been following him. Taking the case, Holmes, pipe in hand, turns to Watson and smiles. 'The game's afoot... '

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
Nov 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I was sure this Sherlock Holmes novel was going to be worthy when I read that the Arthur Conan Doyle Estate had authorized its publication. My hat is off to Anthony Horowitz for channelling Sir Arthur Conan Doyle so perfectly. Holmes and Watson stayed completely in character and the plot was one that Doyle himself would have admired, despite its having a rougher edge than the original author would have employed. I enjoyed every moment once the game was afoot (sorry, I couldn’t resist).

He could n
Apr 16, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery, england
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
As a reader who hasn't read all that much by way of Sherlock Holmes, I have to say this was a great way to be introduced to the character for the more novice readers out there.

Set in 1890, Sherlock and Dr. Watson (the character responsible for chronicling Sherlock's adventures) are accosted by a desperate art dealer, Mr Carstairs, who is being harassed by a dangerous criminal from Boston, with whom he has a history; this mysterious flat-cap wearing man has been seen standing outside of Carstair
Dec 05, 2014 rated it really liked it
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
Hippie Chick
Anthony Horowitz was commissioned by the estate of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle to write new Sherlock Holmes books. He also wrote for several British mystery series such as Poirot and Midsomer Murders.
I found this book a terrible disappointment. After reading The Magpie Murders, I was looking forward to reading something else by Anthony Horowitz, so I picked The House of Silk.
The story is told by Dr John Watson as if it were a Sherlock Holmes case that had to be locked away in a vault until everyone c
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
Ivonne Rovira
Feb 28, 2015 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
Jun 28, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: misc-fiction, 2018
Endorsed by the Conan Doyle estate The House of Silk was my first foray into a literary version of Sherlock Holmes. I've seen the two Robert Downey Jr films (classics!) and a version of Hound of the Baskervilles but never read any of the original stories.  Despite my lack of experience I still felt i was being re-introduced to an old friend.

Dr Watson eases us in with a welcome full of foreshadowing and the story starts in a typical investigative fashion when Holmes and Watson (in the familiar su
Melania 🍒
Mar 06, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is everything I hoped for a Sherlock Holmes mystery. Watson was the only one who seemed a bit out of the character .I believe that, in this book, he represented the reader, but I always thought he’s Holmes’ peer , more than just a spectator of his partner’s abilities. But other than that, every character fitted to well in this universe.
The book starts as a light read, a cozy mystery , that turns to be much more than that. It tickles some class problems and it shows parts of a dark en
Jan 10, 2012 rated it really liked it
An excellent tale of Holmes and Watson, it kept me reading and fits very well among the series as written by Arthur Conan Doyle. It was marketed as the first official allowed sequel makes you wonder what the status is of the other official sequel written by Caleb Carr "The Italian Secretary". While Horowitz doesn't delve as deep in the Victorian world (as Carr was able to do) he does give the impression that he knows his stuff and nowhere does the novel stray of in unbelievable mistakes in time ...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
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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

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