The Reading Challenge Group discussion

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Group Read Archive 2014-16 > Classic Group Read (August 2014) - A Study in Scarlet, by Arthur Conan Doyle

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message 1: by Faye, The Dickens Junkie (new)

Faye | 1415 comments Mod
The winner of this month's Classic Group Read poll fits with the genre of the month, as well - A Study in Scarlet, one of the Sherlock Holmes short novels. Book discussion can begin on August 1st.


message 2: by Renee, Mistress of the Mini-Challenge (new)

Renee M | 4708 comments Mod
I look forward to the discussion on this. I read/reread my way through the Holmes canon last year after seeing the outstanding BBC series, Sherlock. Each novel and short story was delightful in it's own way, and having the details fresh in my mind added to the viewing/reviewing of the series.


message 3: by Laura (new)

Laura | 138 comments I am about a 1/3 of the way through. so far so good.


message 4: by Renee, Mistress of the Mini-Challenge (new)

Renee M | 4708 comments Mod
I love the beginning of this the young Mr. Holmes and the young Dr. Watson. Learning about each other as we do. :D


message 5: by Sandy (new)

Sandy I am trying to fit in another genre challenge read this month since Heading Out to Wonderful didn't really seem to fit. I am listening to Librivox version 1 of A Study in Scarlet. There hasn't been much discussion so far. Is anyone else reading/has anyone else read it (besides Renee)?


message 6: by Holly, That Geeky One (new)

Holly (hollycoulson) | 1949 comments Mod
I'll be re-reading this sometime in the next few days. It's required reading for one of my modules in my first semester at Uni, so I'll be taking some notes, which should aid the discussion.

Have you read any other Sherlock Holmes stories, Sandy?


message 7: by Sandy (new)

Sandy Holly wrote: "I'll be re-reading this sometime in the next few days. It's required reading for one of my modules in my first semester at Uni, so I'll be taking some notes, which should aid the discussion.

Have ..."


I read them all when I was a pre-teen/teenager. That's a long time ago, and I would like to revisit them. :D


message 8: by Polly (new)

Polly Clarke | 56 comments I bought 'The Complete Stories of Sherlock Holmes' a few years ago because the book looked so darn gorgeous. A complete luxury. I recall reading 'A Study in Scarlet' when I first bought it but for the life of me, I can't recall much. I'm tempted to re-read over the next week now I've read this thread. Catch ya laters.


message 9: by Renee, Mistress of the Mini-Challenge (new)

Renee M | 4708 comments Mod
I agree that I like the portions with Holmes and Watson better that the flashback. Especially since it comes so suddenly! But I enjoyed the MELODRAMA of the backstory. In the day, it was probably riveting. The American West must have seemed so exotic! Let alone those secretive Mormons with their Mormon ways! This section is so "pulp fiction!" Not what you expect after you've read the short stories.

However, 3 of the 4 novels have a portion kinda like this. (Although, not quite as melodramatic or disjointed.) In Sign of Four, there's a section set in India. In Valley of Fear, it's back to America with a Masonic-like group. Doyle had a way of making use of the "exotic" to enhance his stories. Cults, clans, superstitions, codes, secret societies, even the KKK. The deductive reasoning bits are the most impressive, but he was definitely capturing his audience with "thrilling" details, as well.


message 10: by Holly, That Geeky One (new)

Holly (hollycoulson) | 1949 comments Mod
It looks like we could have a really lively discussion of this!


message 11: by Sandy (last edited Aug 25, 2014 09:18AM) (new)

Sandy I just listened to chapter 1 of part 2 earlier this evening. The change of setting took me totally by surprise. I read the book so long ago that I have completely forgotten the plot. The chapter ends with the mention of Stengerson as one of the Mormons. I hadn't realized that this was a flashback. Can hardly wait to find the time to listen to the next chapter!


Brenda (aka Gramma) | 278 comments I listened to this earlier this month and liked the second part more than the first, but I can't remember what I thought the first time I read it.

Not directly about this novel because I don't want to give any spoilers, but one reason I can say I like Holmes is the respect and understanding he shows for the "criminal" in some of the short stories. I think part 2 gives a hint that that sort of thing might happen now and then.


message 13: by Polly (new)

Polly Clarke | 56 comments I read the version in the Complete Stories of Sherlock Holmes rather than this version. The first story that started it all. I love the contrast between Watson's account and the story that Arthur Conan Doyle refers to in a flashback. I particularly love the writing, describing how John Ferrrier and Lucy were found and how it all ties in. As I grew up with the series on the telly, I always think of Sherlock Holmes and Baker Street in the Victorian era but was delightfully surprised for the change in scenery. Wonderful plot (of course)and easy to become absorbed in the English eccentricities of Watson and Holme's characters. Classically wonderful and satisfying in it's conclusions.


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