Looking for a Good Time?

I must admit I am pausing while considering my title, but only for a moment, because the truth is: I got the goods. And by the goods, I mean, of course, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and the Sherlock Holmes stories.

Are you feeling down? Did you scrape the side of your father-in-law's car against a concrete pillar and take all the paint off it (for instance)? Are you worried you aren't bringing in the money in sufficient quantities? Are you facing the prospect of cleaning your entire dirty house? Well, I've got the cure, I must say. If not for the actual problems (alas!), then for the feeling they give you.

Reading "The Hound of the Baskervilles"—well, it's just a pleasure. Sure, you might feel a bit sorry for poor old Watson, but the rest of it? Atmosphere! Intellect! Derring-do!

And for all my talk of pairings and reading in the same general area as your progeny, well, the great thing about these is that you and your child can BOTH read them with equal pleasure. I would say these are great for anyone from the precocious 10-year-old to the sullen and vitriol-filled 17-year-old (though how you will get this person to read them is a mystery in itself).

Anyway, I was all set to write a very irritable post about something else entirely, and then I remembered that I have been having a very pleasurable reading experience and I thought I'd pass it on. Because we can all use a lift sometimes.

Also, if Sherlock Holmes isn't some distant relation of the Doctor, well then, I'll be a monkey's uncle. But that theory is for another time….

4 thoughts on “Looking for a Good Time?

  1. Yes! I spent many happy days with Mr. Holmes as a kid. Exciting, and challenging, but not racy or disturbing.
    All right, so this is really embarrassing, but have you ever watched Rowan Atkinson as a socially awkward and priggish yet somewhat heroic police officer in the short-lived TV series The Thin Blue Line? Well, anyway, in the show his character’s wife makes fun of him for his devotion to Sherlock Holmes stories and “Biggles.” Which made me curious since I did like Holmes so much. I found out about Biggles: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biggles and bought one of the collections. It’s no Sherlock, and the stories are much more boy-ish with lots of wartime and airplane flying and so one, but they are kind of fun, and there are lots of them.
    (And, finally, I know we are not focusing on the moving image here, but as a kid I also enjoyed the old-school PBS Sherlock Holmes with Jeremy Brett.)
    Looking forward to a half-baked elaboration re: Holmes and Doctor Who 🙂

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  2. You know, I wouldn’t be surprised. And in fact a couple of the people behind Dr Who got the bright idea to make a TV series setting Sherlock Holmes in modern-day London, and it is BRILLIANT. [though a bit gory for youthful sensibilities.] Also it’s available on DVD. For those nights when, say, you just want to drink a glass of wine and Watch Something and forget all about the car, the house, the money, etc. Here’s the info: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sherlock_%28TV_series%29

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  3. So wonderful that you mentioned this now! My 10.5 year old asked not long ago to read Sherlock Holmes. I bought the Barnes & Noble Classics series, both volumes.
    From the start, my son wanted to have these stories read aloud to him – which is unusual since he’s mostly stopped asking us to read to him (*sniff*). My husband and I have been taking turns reading to him and it’s been the most surprising and enjoyable experience. First, both of us have really liked the stories, though neither of us are usually mystery readers – it’s been terrific to step outside our usual genres and find something we like so much. Second, it’s reconnected us with our son through reading – I didn’t realize how much I’d missed that. All three of us are eager to read more, and talk about the stories – what a gift!
    I will say, though, that I nearly fell over when I got to the part in the Sign of Four about Holmes using cocaine and morphine! Apparently I was the only one who didn’t know this aspect of the story. (I’ve never seen the movies/watched the TV shows and this is my first time reading the books.) I was fascinated to learn this wasn’t unusual behavior for the time.
    I’m happy to count myself as a Sherlock Holmes fan!

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  4. I think Sherlock Holmes stories were the first adult fiction my then 11 year old read (she still is not sold on most adult fiction even though she is 20).
    Have you seen the Brit miniseries, Sherlock? Really enjoyed it in our house.

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