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Mycroft Holmes

3.65  ·  Rating details ·  4,208 Ratings  ·  778 Reviews
Fresh out of Cambridge University, the young Mycroft Holmes is already making a name for himself in government, working for the Secretary of State for War. Yet this most British of civil servants has strong ties to the faraway island of Trinidad, the birthplace of his best friend, Cyrus Douglas, a man of African descent, and where his fiancée Georgiana Sutton was raised.

Hardcover, 336 pages
Published September 22nd 2015 by Titan Books
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Popular Answered Questions
Irwin Fletcher I know nothing about the League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen but as far as the James Bond canon is concerned there is no connection to Sherlock Holmes.…moreI know nothing about the League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen but as far as the James Bond canon is concerned there is no connection to Sherlock Holmes. The original M, before Judy Dench took over the role, was named Sir Miles Messervy. And obviously ACD's original Sherlock Holmes stories had no mention of James Bond as ACD died about 23 years before the character was invented. (less)
Marilyn I too did not think a "sports hero" could write exceptional fiction -- and about England's icon, Sherlock Holmes. I too owe KAJ a big "I'm sorry."
I too did not think a "sports hero" could write exceptional fiction -- and about England's icon, Sherlock Holmes. I too owe KAJ a big "I'm sorry."
As to your question, I don't think Sherlockians (Holmesians outside North America) "believe" in Sherlock Holmes like some of us believe in God. We treat him as a real person for the sake of "the Great Game" started by Ronald Knox and the Baker Street Irregulars (based pretty much in New York City; but with members all over the world) Sherlock Holmes is one of the great heroes of fiction. He closely observes even the minutiae. He thinks beyond the average man's skill in thinking, yet with the same materials at hand as the average man. He is a genius of logic and he solves crimes. He's fascinating. I think he even surprised himself when he not only accepted Watson's friendship but depended on it and found the desire to love another person. To a person who strove to be a "thinking machine", that unexpected and unsought for friendship made him human, and a better, saner, more mentally balanced man.(less)

Community Reviews

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Paul Nelson
Oct 19, 2015 rated it really liked it
So this is all about the young Mycroft Holmes, written by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Anna Waterhouse. I don’t know enough to comment on the contribution of each author but if the 7ft 2" 68 year old record scoring basketball player is the main writer then hats off to the guy he’s done a pretty good job.
The story is set in 1870, Mycroft Holmes is 23 and proficiently working his way up the ranks in the Secretary of State’s office, it's an interesting period in British history where they had many prot
Jan 13, 2015 marked it as to-read
The best center in NBA history wrote a book about Sherlock Holmes' older brother. Of course I need this.
Sep 26, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2015
I was aware that being a successful author was just one of the many things keeping KAJ busy post retirement from the NBA, but this is the last book I expected him to write. Mycroft Holmes has everything that a great Mystery should. A great supporting cast, and a story that keeps you reading until the end. I didn't enjoy this characterization of a young Mycroft as much as I thought I should, perhaps this is because I am so used to the mature version of the character as showcased in the original s ...more
Oct 09, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery
I am a major Sherlock Holmes fan. I have read every one of the Arthur Conan Doyle tales and many of the tributes aka “Pastiches” writtenby others since then. Not surprisingly none of them ever rise to the equivalent of the original but there have been some noble attempts. In Mycroft Holmes written by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (yes, that Kareem Abdul-Jabbar) and Anna Waterhouse, the authors do a very wise move. They avoid the imposing Sherlock and concentrate on his smarter and older brother Mycroft. S ...more
Aug 08, 2015 rated it really liked it
Four stars because it surprised me by being enjoyably readable. Probably only three stars for actual artistic merit. But, if you imagine a younger Mark Gatiss running around Trinidad with current-day Chiwitel Ejiofor, it makes for an awesome head-movie.
Aug 15, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was more than a little surprised that Kareem Abdul-Jabbar had written a Holmsian mystery, not that I've followed the basketball star or had any idea about what his personal interests were. I did wonder if it might be one of those know the ones...where the famous person gets a book deal and the book gets a lot of publicity and sells well, but the content of the actual book is rather lackluster. I'm happy to report this wasn't one of those books.

The novel has two very likeable protag
Dec 08, 2015 rated it did not like it
Shelves: sherlock
If this book was a movie, it would be a bad B movie. The plot, dialogue, and scenes lack imagination and bear all the marks of what is trite. Other than the name Holmes, it has no resemblance to a Holmesian tale.

The story is about Sherlock’s older brother Mycroft, and therein lies another problem. The authors make Mycroft out to be like Sherlock: a man of action, a man that rides into the fray, a man who boxes - he even gives Sherlock a boxing lesson. I don’t like it when someone writes a fanfic
Is it heretic to say that I prefer Douglas to Watson?

This book looks at Sherlock Holmes' brother Mycroft in his early salad days, if you can see the Holmes' bros as having salad days. Mycroft's best buddy is Douglas, a black American, and Douglas actually plays a greater role in the story than Watson. The story is a good mix of action and mystery. It also ties in very well with history, so the story itself is largely believable. Sherlock, too, makes an appearance. The only false note is the roma
Sep 29, 2015 rated it really liked it
Together with Anna Waterhouse, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar relates a story of Sherlock Holmes' older brother, telling of his first adventure when he was only twenty-three. Mycroft Holmes is an intricately plotted, dramatic account. And, it's marvelous, with the tone of the original stories.

While his younger brother is in college, Mycroft is already making a name for himself as secretary to the Secretary of State for War. He aspires to work for Queen and country, marry his gorgeous fiancée, Georgiana, an
Dec 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mystery-sleuth
Mycroft Holmes by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.

A new dimension has been added to the fans of Sherlock Holmes and it is that of his older brother Mycroft. The setting is after the Civil War in London. Mycroft in his early twenties and his best friend Cyrus Douglas formerly of Trinidad have been informed of horrific crimes against small children taking place in Trinidad. Footprints facing in the opposite direction of the pathways taken and children being called to their doom.

Mycroft and Douglas have a pla
Barbara (The Bibliophage)
In essence, this is a prequel to what we know of Sherlock Holmes' older brother Mycroft. I started out thinking it was going to be a straightforward historical mystery, possibly with some supernatural elements. Ultimately though it was a much deeper story, with more commentary on social justice of the time and nothing supernatural.

The locales of London and the West Indies, mostly Trinidad, provide a colorful and diverse background. Mycroft and his sidekick Cyrus Douglas are smart and inventive.
Aug 31, 2016 rated it it was ok
Oh, I mean, I guess I don't regret reading it, but this was certainly not to my caliber. I got it on a deal, am obsessed with everything Holmes, and was entirely intrigued by the author, but it read as I suspected. I knew better, really, but curiosity....

In any case. Interesting story I guess (though predictable), unique take, but certainly deeply flawed in its representation of Mycroft Holmes, canonically speaking, and definitely not literary. It had well-crafted sentences and visua
Amanda Mae
Jul 10, 2015 rated it really liked it
Rather impressed with the quality of Mr. Abdul-Jabbar's Holmes fan fiction. :) Compelling story, interesting characters, a plot that moved at a good clip, and lots of historic detail to make it even more enjoyable to read. Rather well done!
Jonathan Maas
Nov 01, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Love this book! I'm a big fan of Jabbar lately due to his op-eds, but this one transcends current political climates. Just a great book, with an impactful ending.
Lauren Stoolfire
Oct 06, 2015 rated it really liked it
Mycroft Holmes is ready to begin his governmental career after completing his education at Cambridge. Mycroft's comfortable life is turned upside down when his best friend Cyrus Douglas, a man of African descent from Trinidad (also the place where Mycroft's finacee, Georgiana, grew up), receives troubling reports from home about the strange disappearances of children. There are reports of mysterious footprints on the beach and the children found drained of blood. It seems as if spirits are lurin ...more
Historical Fiction

4.5 stars

Mycroft Holmes, Sherlock's older brother, is just out of University, working in the office of the Secretary of State for War in London. He has ties to Trinidad, the birthplace of his best friend, Cyrus Douglas, a man of African descent, and where his fiancée Georgiana Sutton was raised.

Mycroft's ordered world is turned upside down when Douglas receives troubling reports from home. Mycroft, thoroughly besotted with his fiancée, Georgiana, is torn between staying in Engl
Sep 19, 2016 rated it did not like it
This is so bad it's actually almost funny. I have no idea who the main protagonist is, but he sure as hell is not Mycroft Holmes.

There are more fight scenes than in most modern Hollywood films. And some of them are hilarious! People survive from absolutely ridiculous situations without much damage. And I mean ridiculous, really. Like Michael Bay thinks this book is maybe a bit over the top with all the action and explosions.

Also, the only female character is absolutely useless and an excellent
J.V. Seem
Sep 26, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime
I pre-ordered this book the moment I heard of it; it's such a brilliant idea. ...but sadly, that's all.
This book is not at all what you'd expect, and even though it does have its entertaining moments, its conspiracy is, at intervals, equally predictable and confusing. In the end, it simply washed over me.
Nov 18, 2015 rated it liked it
It was fine. Really, the best parts were when Douglas would tell Mycroft not to act like such a know-it-all (stop telling us how obvious the answer is and just tell us the answer, right?). It was kind of fussy.
Jan 06, 2016 rated it really liked it
First Sentence: The old man had heard of them, of course.

Young Mycroft Holmes is fresh out of Cambridge University, engaged to the beautiful Georgiana Sutton, who was raised in Trinidad, and working for the Secretary of State for War. Holmes’ good friend Cyrus Douglas, a free black also from Trinidad, receives word that the bodies of children are being found drained of blood. Georgiana suddenly departs for her home. Mycroft and Douglas decide to follow, never expecting the danger into which they
Anthony Helm
Mar 02, 2016 rated it really liked it
I wasn't sure what to expect from Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's "Mycroft Holmes," but I was pleasantly surprised nonetheless. At the outset, it did not feel like a Holmes book, but it quickly found its rhythm and I was caught up in the story that centers on Sherlock's elder brother, a young man still just a couple of years out of university. In fact, Sherlock hardly appears at all, but that was a good thing. Still, there is much in common between the siblings, though Mycroft (and Abdul-Jabbar) likes to ...more
Astrid Lim
So this book is not bad. I didn't have any expectations because pastiches and spin offs are rarely as good as their original series. But turned out Mycroft Holmes is pretty decent, adventurous, and refreshing. Mycroft reminds me of Sherlock actually, but in different style. Cyrus Douglas is a good -albeit a bit typical - sidekick. And the historical background of the story is also pretty good - the writers have done their homework well. This is my first time reading Kareem Abdul Jabar's book, an ...more
May 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book was a lot of fun and action-packed! It fit in well with the Holmes canon but was still quirky and different. I thought the depiction of a young Mycroft was a clever move by the authors and his friendship with Cyrus Douglas both mirrored the Holmes-Watson relationship and was totally different. Well paced. Also, the setting, rather than London as usual, made the book extra interesting and gave it a flavour of its own.
Ginger Harris
May 25, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is surprisingly good story! I am a bit disappointed Abdul-Jabbar doesn't use his unique experience to create something original. Perhaps that's the point, he's trying to stay true to the Holmesian universe. I, myself, am not the biggest fan of detective stories. This one had elements of racial and societal justice in Venezuela in a post Civil War Era. Just come on and join Sherlock's older brother for quite the adventurous ride.
Feb 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I had no expectations for this book and wondered if an NBA player could write a worthy book on such a storied character. What a wonderful surprise! Loved this book! Plot twists and mystery make for a delightful read.
4.5 stars, for sure.

For all his vaunted intelligence (he is a Holmes, after all), Mycroft is still given to the follies of youth. He is aware of them, of course, but dismisses any problems his arrogance might cause until it catches up to him. Cyrus Douglas, his best friend, is an older man who indulges Mycroft's need for adulation for while keeping his own counsel on Mycroft's naiveté. It's a shifting of the traditional Sherlock and Watson dynamic. We don't need two pairs of the exact same char
This captivating historical mystery set in the 1870s lured me into not putting this book down from the first madcap adventure to the last soulfully satisfying page. This book appealed to me on many levels, there was an intriguing mystery, rich historical details, and a tinge of romance. Often for me it is the characters in a mystery that hold my attention, and the young Mycroft Holmes and his closest friend Cyrus Douglas, a native of Trinidad, prove to be a formidable duo as they seek to solve t ...more
Feb 27, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: audiobook
I tried to like this, I really did. I had no idea Kareem Abdul-Jabbar was such a Sherlockian - pretty cool. I also like the premise that it was about Mycroft Holmes instead of Sherlock. The result, unfortunately, was less than stellar.
Abdul-Jabbar got so engrossed in over-explaining every deduction Mycroft made that the overall pace of the book really suffered. The premise of the story was fine, but the conclusion was extremely unlikely and very much over the top.
Not recommended.
Sean O
Jan 16, 2016 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: abandoned-books
I had a lot of hope for this book, because who doesn't love concept: NBA superstar writes mystery novel based on a famous character.

Sadly, the book is pretty tepid. There's nothing particularly Mycroftian about the main character, and the story is pretty slow to get going.

I gave up after reading the same chapter three times and nothing stuck.

It's a short book, but I'm not going to finish it right now.
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Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (born Ferdinand Lewis Alcindor, Jr. on April 16, 1947 in New York City, New York, United States) is an American former professional basketball player and current assistant coach. Typically referred to as Lew Alcindor in his younger days, he changed his name when he converted to Islam.
More about Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

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“He had breath in him once,” he declared. “He is to be treated with respect, no matter the cost.” “Now is not the time for empty ritual,” Holmes thundered. “Now is precisely the time!” Douglas thundered back. “When we ourselves are empty, it is the ritual that turns us human again.” 3 likes
“Pride goeth before destruction,” he quoted, “and a haughty spirit before a fall.” 1 likes
More quotes…