Despite it being a Guy Ritchie film and despite it being a bit over the top, I actually enjoyed the first Sherlock Holmes move. I thought Robert Downey put in a good performance. The new film is out in December and involves Sherlock and co. chasing Moriarty across Europe and also Noomi Rapace in her first major post-Lisbeth role.
With the excellent Sherlock BBC series getting such a good audience at present, anything Sherlock Holmes related is bound to be popular. I see that Titan Books are releasing another in their series of Further Adventures of Sherlock Holmes series in October 2010, titled The Further Adventures of Sherlock Holmes: Dr Jekyll and Mr Holmes
Here’s the synopsis:
When Sir Danvers Carew is brutally murdered, the Queen herself calls on SHERLOCK HOLMES to investigate. In the course of his enquiries, the esteemed detective is struck by the strange link between the highly respectable Dr. Henry Jekyll and the immoral Edward Hyde. Can he work out what it is that connects the two men or is it mystery even beyond the skills of the great Sherlock Holmes?
Sir Arthur Conan Doyles timeless creation returns in a new series of handsomely designed detective stories. The Further Adventures series encapsulates the most varied and thrilling cases of the worlds greatest detective.
I once reviewed Eco’s Baudalino for another blog and found its attempt at postmodern humour. I think Eco does much better when he’s being more serious, and there’s no better example of that than his classic medieval mystery story The Name of the Rose. I have recently started reading this again for my own research – see the Roger Draper project. I found it interesting how he uses a narrator who was actually present during the events to tell the story. This has a number of advantages, the character of the narrator is emotionally involved in the story and can give a vivid description of what happens, while also allowing the reader to get an insight into the medieval mind. However, by making the narrator a minor character and not one of the principles, it allows Eco to provide commentary on characters such as William of Baskerville and maintain some mystery about their thoughts and motives. As a reader therefore our respect for William’s deductions are enhanced. A bit like the way Conan Doyle used Watson to narrate the Sherlock Holmes stories.
Something worth bearing in mind perhaps for my own Roger Draper book. Who would be the narrator though – the bungline Roger, who is baffled by the intuition and deduction of his lowly sidekick Jake? Could be…
I’m currently reading Through a Glass Darkly by Sheridan Le Fanu. This is not a novel per se, but a collection of five ghost stories connected by a common narrator – a Dr Hesselius. The stories remind me of some of the ghost stories by Henry James – Turn of the Screw etc, but also of Sherlock Holmes, as they have an almost investigative aspect to them. Often the afore mentioned narrator or even another Dr or priest is trying to find a medical or metaphysical explanation for strange occurences.
I am enjoying the first two stories that I have read so far – there is a good building of tension, which the Jamesian allusive prose adds to.