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The House of Silk

(Horowitz's Holmes #1)

3.98  ·  Rating details ·  43,302 ratings  ·  4,557 reviews

It is November 1890 and London is gripped by a merciless winter. Sherlock Holmes and Dr Watson are enjoying tea by the fire when an agitated gentleman arrives unannounced at 221b Baker Street. He begs Holmes for help, telling the unnerving story of a scar-faced man with piercing eyes who has stalked him in recent weeks.

Intrigued, Holmes and Watson fin
Paperback, 422 pages
Published September 11th 2014 by Orion (first published November 1st 2011)
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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)
Alice Actually it was a fun read, interrupted with station stops, coffee breaks, and lunch. You could put the book down and pick it up whenever you felt lik…moreActually it was a fun read, interrupted with station stops, coffee breaks, and lunch. You could put the book down and pick it up whenever you felt like it without missing a beat. A perfect train book!!(less)
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Average rating 3.98  · 
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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
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
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  ·  review of another edition
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  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: top, i-said, lod
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
As an avid fan of the author’s books, Magpie Murders, The Word Is Murder, and The Sentence is Death, I was anxious to read this one. Horowitz received approval from Arthur Conan Doyle’s estate to write a new Sherlock Holmes novel, and this book was the result.

I confess that I have not read a Sherlock Homes book, so I have nothing to compare this one to, but in typical Horowitz fashion, it was well-written and I trust the author stayed true to the characters. I found the dynamic between Holmes a
Aug 05, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
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  ·  review of another edition
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

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 an
Feb 04, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
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
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
Sep 05, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio

3.5 stars, rounded up

I’ve never been a big Sherlock Holmes fan, but I am a huge Anthony Horowitz fan. So, I decided to give The House of Silk a try.

It’s an interesting story. An art dealer enlists Holmes’s help as he is being menaced by an American criminal, who has followed him back across the Atlantic. The next thing you know, the dealer’s house is broken into, his family is threatened and people are being murdered. Holmes and Watson find themselves now researching multiple murders and being
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  ·  review of another edition
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
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
K.J. Charles
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  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: overdrive, audio
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.
Jun 13, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2020, historical, mystery
Anthony Horowitz has really captured Conan Doyle's writing style. Straight away I was transported back to reading the Sherlock Holmes stories as a teenager. It would be hard to pick the recreated Watson and Holmes from the originals and the settings, events and language are all redolent of the Victorian era. Mycroft, Lestrade, Mrs Hudson and even Moriarty also all make a welcome appearance.

The plot is a dark and complex one, commencing with an art dealer who believes he is being watched by a de
Apr 07, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
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
Jul 18, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Looking for a good book to share, Jan and I thought to pick up another Anthony Horowitz book. Hoping that once again Mr Horowitz could not only thrill us, but also provide a story that was pure story telling, with no gimmicks. We wanted a book that honored the tradition set by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle in his famous Sherlock Holmes stories. The House of Silk met all our expectations and then some.

When I think of Sherlock Holmes, I think of London of the late 1800s. For many it was a dark, dismal,
 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... '

Jan 10, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
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
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
Melania 🍒
Mar 06, 2018 rated it really liked it
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 so well in this universe.
The book starts as a light read, a mystery that turns out to be much more than that. It tickles some class problems and it shows parts of a dark end o
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
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  ·  review of another edition
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
Connie G
Apr 16, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: england, mystery
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
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
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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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