The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle
Summary from Goodreads:
Since Doyle created the immortal Sherlock Holmes and his assistant Dr. Watson, no other mystery writer has come close to eclipsing him as the standard bearer in crime fiction. A brilliant London-based "consulting detective," Holmes is famous for his intellectual prowess and renowned for his skillful use of astute observation, deductive reasoning, and inference to solve difficult cases.
A scandal in Bohemia --
The adventure of the red-headed league --
A case of identity --
The Boscombe Valley mystery --
The five orange pips --
The man with the twisted lip --
The adventure of the blue carbuncle --
The adventure of the speckled band --
The adventure of the engineer's thumb --
The adventure of the noble bachelor --
The adventure of the beryl coronet --
The adventure of the copper beeches.
I am happy that now, they are coming out with many movie and tv adaptations of literature, because it can encourage people to read the books from which they were based on. I would have never really considered reading The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes if it were not for the BBC TV series entitled Sherlock. (Season 3 will be out soon! Eeek!) You see, I have categorized this book under "Classics" which in my mind means "Scary Book/s". But I was wonderfully surprised at how much I loved it.
All of the twelve short stories more or less follow the formula of having an individual come to the infamous 221B Baker Street, the residence of Sherlock Holmes, in order to lay before him whatever mishap, tragedy, crime, or case that they are worried about. From there our super sleuth then employs his genius in solving the case, with his friend Dr. Watson who documents the events that transpire and also acts as the narrator of the entire 12 short stories.
As far as mystery stories go, this truly deserves the greatest praise. The stories are clever and quirky, and unusual, and baffling. Most importantly, it will make you itch and drive you nuts to know who did what and how exactly our beloved Sherlock will solve such a crime that seems like a dead end as far as investigating goes. There is a scattering of red herrings and chekhov's gun and twist and untwists that will guarantee to keep you in the dark right up until Sherlock decides to grace you with his brilliant deductive mind which I think, is the best part. He sees the tiniests of details. A splatter of rain and mud in a certain direction, the dirt on someone's knees, a grip mark on the wrist, ink stains on paper. He is a human magnifying glass who zooms in on everything. He also happens to think of the most clever ways to catch the crook, which was a delight to read. He is a bit of a thespian, Sherlock Holmes.
I was quite surprised to find how little Doctor Watson contributes to the solving of the mysteries. I thought he'd be applying his medical knowledge and giving his two cents to aid Sherlock. But instead he goes with him only as an observer and a 'documenter', and of course serves as our narrator, as I mentioned above. And I think him, narrating, adds much enjoyment to the story because he shares the reader's awe in Sherlock's genius and he has that general air of excitement whenever he comes along these jaunts, mirroring what us, the readers, also feel. Of if not, at least, infecting us with his own excitement.
From among the twelve, my favorites would be: The Boscombe Valley Mystery, Speckled Band, Beryl Coronet and Cooper Beeches.
Overall, I really truly enjoyed this book. And finally, I read a classic! And I did not find it tedious! This will now be my most favorite classic literature, as of the moment, until another one unhorses it, and that may take a while.