The Hound of the Baskervilles. Finished 2-13-15, rating 4.25/5, mystery, 256 pages, pub.1902
Sherlock Holmes Book 5
Holmes and Watson are faced with their most terrifying case yet. The legend of the devil-beast that haunts the moors around the Baskerville families home warns the descendants of that ancient clan never to venture out in those dark hours when the power of evil is exalted. Now, the most recent Baskerville, Sir Charles, is dead and the footprints of a giant hound have been found near his body. Will the new heir meet the same fate?
I found this 1971 copy that sold for 95 cents when published at a book sale last year, isn’t it great? I love finding copies of classics that are in good shape but have obviously been read and enjoyed a few times. Sometimes it feels like I am sharing the experience with another reader. Surely, I am not the only one? I’d been wanting to read a Sherlock Holmes mystery for years and joining the Classics Club last month gave me the push to pick this one up.
I’ve seen the most recent movies with Robert Downey Jr. as Sherlock Holmes and even watched the movie from 1976, the Seven-Per-Cent Solution with a cocaine addled Holmes, so I wasn’t completely unprepared for the man on paper. He is arrogant and insufferable, but here’s the thing, I have a thing for smart guys always have (even though he would most probably not return the favor), so I am willing to overlook a few character flaws for genius. It helps that he is so eccentric that he is always a fascinating study. Genius he is not, but it’s his companion Dr. Watson that really holds the story together as he tells his account of what happened and no one would call Watson arrogant or insufferable. Watson is loyal, steadfast and also very smart. A perfect team.
The Hound of the Baskervilles is often mentioned so I am glad that I now have a frame of reference. The Hound is an evil dog that was called up by a long-lost Baskerville to forever haunt the moor and Baskerville family members. When Charles Baskerville dies without an heir, a sibling’s descendent is called to take his rightful place in the spooky hall on the moor. Only someone has warned him to stay away. Holmes sends Watson and the games begin.
I was pleasantly surprised to find that I loved it. I would love to read all the Holmes book and maybe someday I will but for now I’ve requested the 1939 movie and I’m curious to see what they’ve done with it.
This was also in the Books to Die for analogy:The World’s Greatest Mystery Writers on the World’s Greatest Mystery Novels and was chosen by Carol O’Connell. My post on this book is here.
Any other Sherlock Holmes fans?