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The List of Seven

(The List of Seven #1)

by
3.93  ·  Rating details ·  3,009 ratings  ·  259 reviews
On Christmas Day 1884, a desperate plea from a mysterious woman leads Arthur Conan Doyle—struggling physician, aspiring writer, and part-time demystifier of the occult—to a seance in London’s East End and into a fiendish and deadly trap. Stunned by a shocking display of black magic, Doyle witnesses a murder, nearly falling victim himself before being rescued by a secretive ...more
Paperback, 416 pages
Published September 1st 1994 by Avon (first published 1993)
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Average rating 3.93  · 
Rating details
 ·  3,009 ratings  ·  259 reviews


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Dan Schwent
Feb 28, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2014
Arthur Conan Doyle, doctor and aspiring author, witnesses black magic and murder at a seance. Soon, he finds himself on the run with Jack Sparks dragging him along. But is Jack Sparks an agent of the crown or an escaped mental patient? And why does a mysterious group want Doyle dead? And who are the people on the List of Seven?

A friend of mine started bugging me to read this in 2004. A decade later, I finally gave in.

The List of Seven is a Sherlock Holmes pastiche written by one of the co-creato
...more
Fabian
Jun 07, 2008 rated it really liked it
This is sorta like a very successful "Da Vinci Code"/"The Mummy" hybrid. The references to Arthur Conan Doyle, Bram Stoker, even Jack the Ripper makes this the only book in recent memory to thrill & amaze without making you feel like you should know more literary crap you could possibly know what to do with.

This one goes crazy in the most fertile world of Edwardian (the V.D.'d ROYAL Prince's) London where reality walks hand in hand with the monstrous creations of masterful minds! I read this at
...more
mark monday
a breathless and action-packed steampunk adventure!

a breathless and action-packed steampunk adventure starring mystical special agent Jack Sparks and his doughty Doubting Thomas sidekick Arthur Conan Doyle!

a breathless and action-packed steampunk adventure starring mystical special agent Jack Sparks and his doughty Doubting Thomas sidekick Arthur Conan Doyle, united to fight an infernal Dark Brotherhood and their terrifying zombie and mummy minions!

a breathless and action-packed steampunk advent
...more
William
Mar 21, 2008 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Sherlock Holmes fans, horror fans, Victoriana fans
Shelves: horror-fiction
Mark Frost is best known as the writer on Twin Peaks, and he brings a similarly twisted vision to this wonderful novel set in a slightly skewed Victorian England.

The protagonist is Arthur Conan Doyle, still a doctor, and with no inkling of his creation of the worlds greatest detective.

That's before he gets involved with a secret service agent with amazing deductive skills, a penchant for morphine, and a twisted, brilliant older brother.

This may sound like a Holmes pastiche, but Frost's imaginati
...more
Cherie
Jan 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Two times five stars!

A book that leads you on, holding your breath, right to the very last page and the very last word on that page. That very last word that will give you chills up and down your spine!

Mark Frost, you did it! Wonderfully. You put in everything. I can't think what you left out!

Reader, do you know Sherlock Holmes?
Do you know Doctor Watson?
Do you know London in 1884?
Do you want a story that will build and build and keep you right on the edge of your chair to the last?
Do you wan
...more
Graeme Rodaughan
I'm classifying this book as UF, I love a story with damn, good heroes and despicable, smart villains, and this book delivers.

Arthur Conan Doyle is saved from villainous types by the mysterious and skilled secret agent, Jack Sparks.

What follows is a romp through a Victorian England beset by a cult of evil magicians.

Lots of fun, and very engaging.
The Pirate Ghost (Formerly known as the Curmudgeon)
1. Plot/Story -

Okay, the plot…well, that’s a tough question because I am not sure if what makes this book so interesting is considered “Plot” or “World Building.” On the possibility that it’s both, I’ll give some thoughts here, and some thoughts there.

To me this seemed a lot like the English version of the intense cowboy Secret Service Agent, James West, played by Robert Conrad with all the flare and pomposity of a Roger Moore James Bond or maybe a William Shatner styled Captain Kirk. Hey, no
...more
Jason Pettus
Mar 19, 2010 rated it really liked it
(Reprinted from the Chicago Center for Literature and Photography [cclapcenter.com:]. I am the original author of this essay, as well as the owner of CCLaP; it is not being reprinted illegally.)

I recently had occasion to think again about the exquisitely strange 1990s television show Twin Peaks, co-created by David Lynch and Mark Frost; and that got me thinking again about Frost's two genre novels from that time period as well, 1993's The List of 7 and '95's The 6 Messiahs, the first of which I
...more
Commodore Tiberius Q. Handsome
Mar 05, 2009 rated it really liked it
For fans of both The Somnambulist and The Anubis Gates (and how could you like one and not the other?) along with fans of dark fantasy, steampunk, New Weird, victorian fantasy and adventure fiction in general I recommend The List of 7 wholeheartedly. The protagonist is Arthur Conan Doyle, long before he wrote Sherlock Holmes and was knighted. He becomes ensnared in a web of intrigue involving amassing evil forces, dark magic, criminal masterminds, seances and spiritualists, deductive reasoning, ...more
Kristen
Aug 04, 2012 rated it liked it
This was a very unusual book, which shouldn't be terribly surprising, since the author, Mark Frost is a co-creator of the TV series Twin Peaks.

I definitely enjoyed the book, but it is difficult to do it proper justice in a review without giving away too much of the story. I will do my best.

Arthur Conan Doyle, doctor and aspiring author, and occult de-bunker, receives a mysterious letter on Christmas Eve from a woman begging him to come to a seance and help her. When he does, he witnesses a horri
...more
Polstar
Jan 08, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
It's not often you stumble upon a book that totally sucks you in and ticks all of the right buttons straight away. The List of 7 did that for me.

Sherlock Holmes - TICK
Occult themes - TICK
Victorian setting - TICK
Jack the Ripper - TICK
Egyptology - TICK
Spiritualism - TICK
Zombies, vampires and other monsters - TICK

It felt that this book was written for me - I'm such a selfish reader.

The basic premise is that Arthur Conan Doyle's life is threatened following attendance at a seance; invited by a woman
...more
Andrew
Mar 08, 2014 rated it liked it
This is one of those books I read with more than a little trepidation- the mixture of real life characters and fictional ones always sits a little uncomfortably with me. Its almost as if the author - worrying that for what ever reason (worry that it will not be accepted or even looked at) try and grab attention and interest the throw famous names in to it. As if randomly shouting famous peoples names will suddenly get people to pay attention. Then there is the possibility that by using a famous ...more
Oceana2602
Jul 08, 2007 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: fans, slashers, Sherlock Holmes Fans
This book was recommended to me by Amazon, which is no surprise (though I am a bit scared about how well they know me). The author, Mark Frost, is one of the creators of Twin Peaks. The main character of this book is Arthus Conan Doyle, he of Sherlock Holmes fame, but long before he was published.

In the cold and foggy London of 1884, Doyle participates in a seance, and suddenly find himself involved in murder and satanism, on the run with the mysterious James Spark, a secret agent of Queen Vict
...more
Jeanene
May 25, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
One of my favorite books.

I have a fondness for historical figures as characters in books with supernatural or other fantastical elements. This one features Arthur Conan Doyle, there's also a secret underground steam train and a Victorian era James Bond. Not to mention spooky supernatural stuff.

These are all good in my book.

Very enjoyable if not particularly well written. It would get five stars if the last few chapters hadn't been such a poorly edited mess (technique-wise) leaves a bad taste in
...more
Elaine
Jul 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This had everything I like in a book! Historical figure, intrigue and mystery, dark supernatural, London setting, late 1800s! Wonderfully smart writing with a lot of excellent vocabulary!
Gerhard
May 15, 2020 rated it really liked it
Definitely worth the read!
Bryce
Dec 21, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I wavered between giving this book two or three stars. So it should really be two-and-a-half, I suppose.

I wanted to like this book more than I did; it has so many elements I enjoy in a novel. Historical setting, insertion of fictional characters into "reality," madcap adventures and supernatural goings-on. I'm also on a recent Sherlock Holmes kick... all in all, The List of 7 should have been a winner!

And there were great aspects to the book. First and foremost: the dialogue was splendid. The b
...more
Dane
Oct 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
JB
Jan 16, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I bought this when it was one of the Kindle Daily Deals and now I wish I hadn't spent even 99p on such a waste of a book. Once you realise this is simply just another diet Sherlock Holmes novel with a few names changed around, any enjoyment that could be derived from it simply vanishes. Frost could have at least tried to go with some originality but fails dismally. The writing style itself may be solid but that is the only redeeming feature of this book.

The plotline, whilst in keeping with Holme
...more
Ray
Jan 03, 2009 rated it really liked it
A fun, fast-paced read combining adventure with elements of horror. The plot careens along like a boulder hurtling down a hill, bouncing this way and that but always keeping the reader's attention. In it, a young Arthur Conan Doyle encounters Jack Sparks, (who eventually becomes Doyle's inspiration for Sherlock Holmes), and together with Spark's trusted comrades, they battle a gang of evil-doers bent on world domination, led by Spark's brother, Alexander. (Suffice it to say, the Sparks family ha ...more
Deliah
Jul 12, 2011 rated it really liked it
When I heard Mark Frost was writing a book, I jumped on board with two feet. I adored Twin Peaks back in the day and was curious to see how such a visionary of the small screen could bring that vision to the literary world.
Quite well, actually. It's very convoluted at times, with many characters and sometimes not enough background (or character information to draw you in) but I applauded the way that he made something out of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. I'm fairly certain that they author would be fl
...more
Misha
Jul 09, 2009 rated it really liked it
This is part of that particular offshoot of Holmes pastiches that uses not the Great Detective himself, but his author, Arthur Conan Doyle. This tale penned by Twin Peaks scribe Mark Frost thrusts a young Conan Doyle into an occult mystery leading to the rise of a dark power, the identity of which provides a bit of a twist at the end. Conan Doyle serves as a sort of Watson figure to a Holmes stand-in who works as a secret agent for the British government. I found it a crackling yarn that tickled ...more
Craig
Jun 05, 2013 rated it it was amazing
A playful, inventive and beautifully crafted piece of writing. Mark Frost is a master storyteller and this visit to the foggy world of a sinister Victorian London, in the company of Arthur Conan Doyle, is a real joy. I highly commend this book and I'm delighted to learn that Mr Frost has written a sequel. Five stars!
Martin
May 25, 2009 rated it it was ok
Recommended to Martin by: Jeanene
It grabbed me at the start and slowly lost me as I went along. The characters and action were over the top in a pulp writing style, which is OK with me if handled correctly, but it came off a little silly in this case.
Jamie
Dec 14, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: favorites
I loved this fast paced Victorian thriller. A story of AC Doyle and his adventures with the man who would later be the model for his Holmes adventures.
Carey Combe
Mar 25, 2014 rated it did not like it
When I found myself skipping bits in the first chapter, I soon realised that this was just not the book for me...
Sean Kennedy
Jun 04, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This is one of my top 5 all-time favorite books.
Janet
Jan 20, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Pg 7 - Of human nature, he hoped for basic decencies, and met its inevitable disappointments without rancor or surprise.

Pg 15 - Did her sweet dreams of happiness die slowly as the liquor devoured her cells, or did a single catastrophic heartbreak snap her will like a clay pipe?

Pg 91 -
“What else are our lives finally but a story we tell ourselves to find some sense in the pain of living?” - Sparks
“We have to believe life has meaning.” - Doyle
“Perhaps it can only be as meaningful as our own abili
...more
Jeremiah
May 22, 2017 rated it really liked it

Pretty enjoyable combination of alternative history and genre adventure starring the creator of Sherlock Holmes, Arthur Conan Doyle. I think a number of these sorts of stories dropped about the same time. I recall William Hjortsberg's Nevermore came out a few months after this book and stars Conan Doyle and Harry Houdini as its protagonists.

I came to this book because of Mark Frost's work on Twin Peaks, and there were a few interesting echoes between the two worlds. The List of Seven also has a
...more
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