A Genuine Joy!
Despite being a librarian and avid reader for years, I admit to not having read a Sherlock Holmes story in easily a decade. I’ve seen every adaptation there is to see, but I haven’t bothered reading the actual text until this week when I had to run a book discussion on this title.
I am so glad I read this again as an adult! It’s easy to see why Sherlock Holmes has become a legend in the literary world. Conan Doyle writes in such a specific way, it’s almost a shock to find the date in which this was originally penned. His mastery of language is wonderful because even in our modern era, the entire book is easy to read and understand.
The Hound of the Baskervilles has been adapted a ton of times, so the general story is pretty widely known. A man named James Mortimer turns up at Sherlock & Watson’s home on Baker Street and tells them the tale of the hound of the Baskervilles. This is a supernatural urban legend in which men from the Baskerville line are murdered by a giant beast, only known as the hound. The last Baskerville has just died but his nephew is on the way to take over the estate, and Mortimer is worried the same fate awaits him.
Sherlock and Watson investigate with Watson going to Baskerville Manor to check things out while Sherlock stays in London to track down leads. Watson is the perfect narrator for this story, as he is the man on the ground that the reader views the story through. On top of that, while Watson is incredible in his own right, it is easier to piece together the story and understand how the clues build to the conclusion because he processes everything the way a normal person would, whereas Sherlock’s perspective would be much more hectic.
This is such a quick read and a fun audiobook to listen to. I did a little bit of both and found both very enjoyable. I don’t want to discuss the book too much because it’s so short it’s easy to spoil, but it’s absolutely worth checking out, especially if you haven’t read a story like this in a while. Highly recommended!
Title: The Hound of the Baskervilles
Author: Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
Three Descriptors: A classic!, Suspenseful, Intriguing
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