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The Shadows of Sherlock Holmes (Wordsworth Collection)

3.70  ·  Rating details ·  212 ratings  ·  25 reviews
Selected and Introduced by David Stuart Davies.

The Shadows of Sherlock Holmes is a fascinating collection of stories featuring detectives, criminal agents and debonair crooks from the golden age of crime fiction: a time when Sherlock Holmes was esconsced in his rooms at 221B Baker Street and London was permanently wreathed in a sinister fog. These gripping tales of mystery
Paperback, 384 pages
Published April 5th 1998 by Wordsworth Editions (first published January 1st 1998)
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Average rating 3.70  · 
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Jan 12, 2016 rated it liked it
This book is a collection of short stories by different authors featuring characters involved in the world of mysteries and crime - inspired by Sherlock Holmes' adventures.
Well, shadows... However, the stories written by Edgar Allan Poe, Wilkie Collins, Brett Harte and Anton Chekhov shine on their own there.
I have to add that a piece by Brett Harte is not a crime story actually, but a parody, and Chekhov's story radiates humour and satire. It was fun to read both, they are diamonds.
Sep 10, 2020 rated it liked it
The title of this collection may mislead the reader into imagining that there will be at least a few Sherlock Holmes tales in this selection of detective stories. In fact there are none. Indeed some of the works were written before Arthur Conan Doyle created the famous detective.

Of course a shadow can go behind as well as in front. Early works can be overshadowed by better books that were written later. In any case, would the reader’s eye be instantly caught by a book called The Shadows of C. Au
Pramod Nair
Jan 26, 2015 rated it really liked it
An excellent volume, which introduces some of the best fictional detectives from the crime genre that thrilled readers around the same time when Sherlock Holmes was ensconced in his rooms at 221B Baker Street. This book introduces such fictional detectives like Max Carrados, Skin o' My Teeth, Sexton Blake and Eugene Valmont to the reader. The volume compiles a fine selection of short ad thrilling crime stories written by masters like Edgar Allan Poe, Anton Chekhov, Ernest Bramah and Bret Harte.
Aug 13, 2020 rated it liked it
Interesting to see what was considered acceptable as a solution back then (race memory anyone) but a few too many show why their characters fall into the category of justifiably forgotten and even if you did want to read more where would you find them, always a problem with these types of books, while Dupin or Sexy in Blake have some reprints over the years even the most expert in crime fiction might not have any Skin o` My Tooth or Colonel Clay stories in their collection, do this is merely an ...more
Andrey Reshetnikov
A book of parodies to the cycle of novels and short stories about the celebrated private detective Mr Sherlock Holmes, and his devout friend and chronicler Dr Watson. A parody, of course, never reaches the appeal of the original. In all the stories the authors tried to create a charismatic figure but, unfortunately, fell short of the genius they tried to copy. Many of the stories are more or less decent but the rest is really below the mark. One positive thing about this is, maybe, that they wan ...more
Constance Fastré
Jun 06, 2017 rated it it was ok
Different authors, different Sherlocks. Apart from a few original stories (I especially like the parody of Sherlock which was hilarious), I did not enjoy many of them. Too much like the original while lacking the little something that makes Sherlock Sherlock, I guess I am only fond of the man, not of the genre itself! Ok to keep on your bedside to read once in a while in between other books!
Liz Blake
Jul 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
Hit and miss, but largely hit
Ian Banks
Mar 11, 2018 rated it liked it
Some great yarns in here but many of them really do feel like Holmes and Watson with a gimmick added and the serial numbers filed off. No real duds but some quite samey tales.
Jun 15, 2011 rated it liked it
This collection contains no Sherlock Holmes stories. Anyone hoping to find any will be disappointed. None of the stories feature the original Great Detective and few other fictional characters cast quite such a long shadow, are quite as memorable or as engaging. It should not be a surprise then that few of the stories have central characters that are as vivid or attention grabbing. The collection is not without merit, however, and, given its price, is a decent value collection of vintage crime a ...more
Oct 07, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: short-stories
Once Conan Doyle had tasted success with the first Sherlock
Holmes story "A Study in Scarlet" published in "Beeton's
Christmas Annual" for 1887 it seemed inevitable that other
writers were inspired to created their own idiosyncratic
detectives. I agree with another reviewer, I could have read
this forever - a big plus is a very interesting introduction
as to why Sherlock Holmes was so charismatic and instantly
spawned so many imitators and a paragraph is provided on each
of the authors represented.
I lik
Mar 09, 2013 rated it it was ok
I used to buy books from this publisher at the late lamented indie book store Best Bargain Books in Patchougue, NY. Now hopefully I can still get their books as well as their Mystery book series from the Strand in NYC. With these publications, there's usually a 50/50 chance of getting a good one. You really can't tell until you start reading.
Full disclosure: I tend to prefer my mysteries and crime novels a bit more realistic-Sue Grafton, Ian Rankin, for example. (I think Spencer Quinn's Chet and
Jun 17, 2008 rated it it was amazing
I love this book. I wish it wasn't over! The writing is wonderfully classic in nature, the mysteries creative... One of my favorite parts is the genesis of every mystery which begins with a person or two showing up to Baker Street, and charging into a detailed, one to two page synopsis of the crimes or situations. It seems they've all been briefed beforehand on the intricate details they should include, or is it just coincidence that they all know the protocol?

FYI: The title and publication are
Christopher Riley
Dec 18, 2011 rated it liked it
A fine and thoroughly enjoyable collection of nineteen short detective stories contemporaneous to the hugely popular adventures of the famous Baker Street sleuth.

Davies assembles a very good collection. Only a few of the stories dragged and lacked a degree of originality or zip. I suspect the Sexton Blake story was included for completion's sake. Most of the stories have aged well due to the energy with which they are written.

Grant Allen and Hesketh Pritchard were the two lesser known writers wh
Jun 05, 2010 rated it really liked it
I have enjoyed several FBY novels before - all of which have been set This is an excellent collection of stories, and although some of them may now appear unbelievable and dated to our modern eyes they are nontheless compelling and become quite unputdownable. My favourite stories - where "Nine points of the law" by E W Hornung, "The Biter Bit" by Wilkie Collins, and "Sexton Blake and the Time Killer" (Annon). Anyone who enjoys the great stories of Arthur Conan Doyle or those old fashioned suspen ...more
Nov 03, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Excellent compilation. It includes wonderful examples of detective literature around the Holmes era: we have lady detectives (Loveday Brooke and Miss van Snoop)thieves that baffle the police in their face (Klimo, Raffles and Colonel Clay) Sexton Blake , a comic book detective avant la lettre (and so popular, he even gave name to a cocktail!!!)hunorous parodies by Wilkie Collins and Bret Harte (the latter a Sherlockian parody)and so much more.The choice is excellent, varied and exciting, and the ...more
Apr 06, 2010 rated it really liked it
A good collection of mostly Victorian and Edwardian detective stories, rescued from old magazines and long out-of-print books. I can't praise efforts to save such things enough. There is some really good stuff here. One favourite was a story by Victorian writer Grant Allen about a gentleman thief who returns in disguise time and again to rob the same clueless millionaire which impressed me enough to go out an buy a whole collection of his tales.
Dec 24, 2015 rated it did not like it
I wanted to like this book so badly I reread it for a second time, but nope, I would still give it 1 star. These stories really are just 'shadows of sherlock holmes', and the introduction is even better than the rest of the book good Lord. Urgh.

Btw, anybody explains to me why Craig David is so underrated please?
Suad Ali
Jan 08, 2014 rated it liked it
It's a book of 19 short stories written by different authors and plots that are have been inspired and established on Sherlock Holmes books. Yet each story has its own protagonist, antagonist and characters with tantalizing mystery, humor and some unexpected endings.
Dec 09, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
I really debated this rating. some of the stories warranted 3 stars and some warranted 4. So I will be generous and say that overall these were very enjoyable little tales of decent variety. A nice collection for any mystery buff of the Sherlock era.
Aug 23, 2007 rated it really liked it
as usual watson always descripts all cases with exciting and tremendous point of view....while Sherlock Holmes find all the akward with simple answer.

good to read especially for those who want to know Sherlock Holmes in a glance
Jul 13, 2015 rated it it was amazing
so nice and great really such an amazing book
Miloš Petrik
Aug 02, 2011 rated it really liked it
Excellent selection, some timeless efforts there.
Roger Johnson
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Aug 19, 2012
Debayudh Banerjee
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Oct 29, 2018
Huy Nguyễn
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Jun 01, 2017
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Feb 29, 2016
John Moser
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Jun 06, 2016
Kevin Pillay
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Mar 27, 2017
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Dec 19, 2013
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Jun 11, 2016
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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.

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