Tag Archive | mystery

J.K. Rowling New Mystery Novel No Longer a Mystery

nerdfighters rules Hello Fellow BookNerds!

Fame can make people do some crazy things, but is it really that crazy for J.K. Rowling to want to stay out of the spotlight for a little while?

It was recently discovered that Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling managed to sneak below the media radar by taking on a new pseudonym for her newly published book “The Cuckoo’s Calling”. The book was published in April, but it was only recently that suspicions grew concerning Robert Galbraith, the supposed author of this mystery novel, and certain similarities between his writing style and that of a certain fantasy author.

After having a couple of specialists analyze the writing, they were able to compare it, with a great deal of accuracy, to Rowling’s writing style. When they brought news to those who worked on her behalf, she had no choice but to come clean. According to Time Entertainment, Rowling made the decision to do this “because being Robert Galbraith has been such a liberating experience!”

So, what is this new novel about?
CuckoosCallingCover The Cuckoo’s Calling is a mystery crime solving novel, which centers around the ‘apparent’ suicide of a supermodel, and the struggles of Detective Cormoran Strike as he tries to not only solve this case, but also to finally earn himself a decent living as a private detective.
 
I have yet to read this novel myself, but if I do decide to pull out my chapter’s gift card, I won’t be purchasing it just because it happens to be written by one of my all-time favourite authors. I have a soft spot for mystery novels, which is evident by my almost weekly posting about another one of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s masterpieces. What Rowling did was show that it’s not so easy to make it in the publishing world, at least not right away, and how people will buy books only because they were written by someone famous and already known to all.
 
 
What do you think?
 
 
Whether you have read her new book or not, I’d like to know what you think about Rowling writing a novel under a pseudonym, and keeping it quiet from not just the media, but her devoted fans. Personally, I see nothing wrong with it, but that’s just my opinion.
 
 
That’s all for today. I have been rather lax in my writing lately, but I will strive to post on a more regular basis for the remainder of the Summer. So until next time, happy reading!
 
 
Cheers,
 
 
BookNerd
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Book Review: The Adventure of the Blue Carbuncle

nerdfighters rules Hello Fellow BookNerds!

If you’re like me, then you can hardly keep yourself composed and calm when thinking that the third season of Sherlock is waiting just on the other side of the Summer break. This fall, the secret to Sherlock’s survival shall finally be revealed, and we shall see what new and exciting mysteries await or crime solving duo.

In the meantime, here is a look at yet another one of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s original masterpieces which inspired the creation of this modern day spin on the classic. This one is much shorter than all the previous works of his I have presented to you, not that any of them are all that long. These are the kind of stories that would appear in the daily newspaper, allowing for only so much detail in such a limited space.

This story is from chapter 7 of ” The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes 2009″, and it is called The Adventure of the Blue Carbuncle. The following is my interpretation of the story, and may contain some spoilers which I apologize for in advance.

carbuncle_title

stars-5

While most people spend the Christmas holidays preparing feasts, purchasing gifts and adorning their pine trees with decor, Sherlock Holmes, not being most people, spends his holidays much the same as he spends any other day; solving a mystery. The case he is currently working on is not entirely unrelated to the season, although it seems like nothing more than a strange waste of time in the eyes of dear old Dr. Watson. Coming home to 221B Baker Street, Dr. Watson discovers Mr. Holmes examining a rather tattered old hat, which he is later told belonged to someone who had gotten himself into a bit of a scuffle with some ruffians. Just as you would expect, Sherlock believes wholeheartedly that everything they need to identify the owner of this hat, and what exactly he had gotten himself into, could be deduced from this single piece of evidence. What was seemingly a waste of effort and time soon became quite the mystery when a small, blue diamond was discovered in a frozen turkey recovered from the scene of the crime, seemingly belonging to the man who also owned the hat. This, of course, was not just any diamond; this was the Countess of Morcar’s blue carbuncle! What could that man have been doing with the jewel? Were the people who attacked him after the jewel as well? Is this how Watson and Holmes will spend their entire Christmas Holidays?

This story is another classic example of what makes Sherlock Holmes such a memorable character. Dr. Watson is still unable to grasp the way in which the cogs move within the mind of his detective friend, although that doesn’t stop him from trying to apply his own deductive skills. It’s also a classic example of how something which most people would overlook, like a ripped up old hat, could actually be a big clue to an entire series of events pointing to a much greater plot. This one would definitely make a nice holiday episode of the BBC show Sherlock, but we’ll just have to wait and see how that modern twist of this classic series is going to unfold.

That’s all for today. If you’ve read this book already, let me know what you thought of it in the comments below. Also, feel free to leave any of your own book reviews or recommendations in the comments on the Book Recommendations from You page. Life is full of books waiting to be read, so until next time, happy reading!

Cheers,

BookNerd

Review: The Five Orange Pips

nerdfighters rules Hello Fellow BookNerds!

In case you haven’t already heard the news, although I’m sure you have if you spend any time at all on the internet, NATHAN FILLION has been recently added to the guest list for Ottawa Comiccon! Thanks to that, there will now be  Firefly panel/Q&A! It just keeps getting better and better, and there are only five days left until the big weekend. I hope you’re all as excited as I am ^_^

And now we move on to today’s review of Sir Arthur Conan Doyles’ mystery masterpiece; The Five Orange Pips.

The Five Orange Pips

Five Orange Pips

stars-5

A mysterious envelope. The initials K.K.K. Five orange pips. A man dying under odd circumstances …. what does this all add up to? A case interesting enough to attract the attention of Sherlock Holmes, of course. Mr. John Openshaw was quite distraught upon entering 221 B Baker Street, and Sherlock even more so upon hearing his story, for he could not believe the man had not come for his expertise sooner! After the judge and jury claimed the deaths to be unrelated to these suspicious messages, Sherlock was determined to blow their simple minds, as well as the lid on this case. By combining all of the available evidence, Mr. Holmes was able to deduce that Mr. John Openshaw, as well as his deceased family members, have all fallen victim to the vindictiveness of the Ku Klux Klan society. Mr. Openshaw only has to choices; to change his ways or flee the country. You’ll just have to read and find out whether Holmes and Watson are able to protect him from either fate by seeking out the culprits and putting an end to their terrorizing ways. Quite a bit of this story is reflected in the BBC Sherlock episode “The Great Game”, where Sherlock is sent on a kind of scavenger hunt after receiving a phone call, followed by five beeps (pips). My favorite aspect of this story is that it gives some insight into the kind of information Sherlock values most, according to his best friend Doctor Watson :

Philosophy, astronomy, and politics were marked at zero, I remember. Botany variable, geology profound as regards the mud stains from any region within fifty miles of town, chemistry eccentric, anatomy unsystematic, sensational literature and crime records unique, violin player, boxer, swordsman, lawyer, and self-poisoner by cocaine and tobacco. Those, I think, were the main points of my analysis.” (The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, p.110).

Another thing about this particular story which fascinates me is that although they solve the mystery in the end, the man whom they were charged with protecting did not come out of things alive. It shows that although he may be a genius, Sherlock is by no means perfect, adding a dimension of realism to his character. All in all, though, a satisfactory tale.

That is all for today. As always, feel free to leave any thoughts or questions in the comments, and if you have any books you would like to recommend, visit the “Book recommendations from You” page in the above menu and leave the title, author and a brief summary in the comments. I hope you are all taking advantage of this lovely weather – perfect for perching up in a tree with a good book – and until next time, happy reading!

Cheers,

BookNerd

Review: The Boscombe Valley Mystery

nerdfighters rules Hello Fellow Booknerds!

Just because all of the evidence points to one logical conclusion, that may not be the only conclusion to be drawn from those same facts. Today, we will be looking at The Boscombe Valley Mystery by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, a Sherlock story where the answer to the mystery may not be what you expected…

The Boscombe Valley Mystery

bosc

stars-5

Sherlock Holmes brings his companion, Dr. Watson, yet another case. The catch; the authorities already have someone in custody! So why has it caught the attention of our brilliant detective? Well, according to Mr. Holmes: “there is nothing more deceptive than an obvious fact”. After catching Dr. Watson up on all of the facts, it is now up to this crime solving duo to figure out whether the son is truly guilty for the murder of his own father, or whether a third party was somehow involved in this debacle. Inspector Lestrade, whom you may remember from A Study in Scarlet, returns to assist Sherlock with this case, at the request of Miss Turner, a childhood friend of the accused murderer who vouches for his innocence. Is it possible that the blossoming romance between the two was the catalyst leading to the feud between father and son, and possibly forcing the son’s hand to beat in his head with the butt of his gun? Although originally predisposed to believing the son was guilty, Watson takes his own crack at the case by applying his medical know-how to the supposed cause of death of the father. A small and easily overlooked inconsistency with the medical report and the account of what happened sparks his interest, and he became equally as compelled to prove the boy’s innocence. It is yet another riveting tale which will work those inactive cogs in your brain as you try to understand Sherlock’s method, although there is no shame if you cannot; his mind is one of a kind, after all, but I digress. I found this to be one of the more enjoyable of his tales thus far, as the conclusion is not as obvious as you would expect, and Watson is no longer playing a mere supporting role as another case is closed by this crime solving duo.

That is all for today. If you have an comments, critiques or questions, I encourage you to leave them in the comments. If you have some books of your own that you would like to recommend, visit the “Book Recommendations from You” page above and leave the title and author in the comments. I already have more books than I can read in a lifetime, but that won’t stop me from adding more to my list 🙂 I look forward to hearing from you, and until next time, happy reading!

Cheers,

 BookNerd

Book Review: A Case of Identity

nerdfighters rules Hello Fellow BookNerds!

A rich family, the disappearance of a fiance, and a whole lot of money on the line; sounds like a mystery for the great Sherlock Holmes! Read and see how the detective’s deductive science is put to the test this time in Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s A Case of Identity

A Case of Identity

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stars-5

When the rich, sophisticated and emotionally troubled Miss Mary Sutherland appears on the doorstep of 221 B Baker Street, she brings with her a case that would be trouble for your average detective, but which is a mere cinch for Mr. Holmes. Just like his previous stories, Mr. Doyle presented the story from Dr. Watson’s perspective, who in this case was able to offer up his own deductive skills as opposed to merely watching in awe as Sherlock Holmes unravels the entire mystery by merely observing the victim. They were both in agreement that Miss Sutherland’s potential fiance, Mr. Angel, had behaved rather suspiciously before disappearing, and her stepfather Mr. Windibank did not appear to be completely innocent either with such a grand sum of money involved… All in all, a compelling story. There were even a few phrases I recognized from Sherlock BBC, which is what drew me into this world of detective work and criminal conspiracies. Just goes to show that his work continues to inspire writers of all types, which is a mark of true genius.

That’s all for today. As always, I encourage you to share your thoughts in the comments, whether bad or good, and if you have a book that you would like to recommend, visit the “Book Recommendations from You” page above and leave the title, author and a brief summary in the comments. Until next time, happy reading!

Cheers,

BookNerd

Review: The Red-Headed League

nerdfighters rules Hello Fellow BookNerds!

Today, we shall unveil the second tale of The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle; The Red-Headed League.

The Red-Headed League

Sherlock_Holmes_Museum_The_Red-Headed_League

stars-5

No matter how brilliant and cunning they may think their scam is, it is still no match for the clever deductive skills of Sherlock Holmes. In this tale, Mr. Holmes is presented with the predicament of Mr. Wilson, who one moment was working for a fair sum of money by copying the Encyclopedia Britannica, and the next out of the job and unwittingly caught up in the complex scheme of murderer, thief, smasher, and forger John Clay. Just as the first tale, it is told entirely from the perspective of Dr. Watson, similar to how he would record the cases him and Sherlock took in the form of a blog on the BBC show Sherlock. This time, however, their was a little less dialogue and a little more action as Sherlock, Watson, Wilson and two other newly acquired associated for this occasion, tracked down the whereabouts of the criminal and brought justice to those who had been foiled by this pretense of an exclusive ‘red-headed league’. It was quite the page turner, and although the story itself was still quite short, Doyle has this uncanny knack for being able to fit in every necessary detail without requiring any additional pages. In short, it is my favorite mystery thus far, although there are still 10 more to come…

That is all for today. As always, I would love to hear what your take on this story is. Just leave your thoughts, comments and opinions in the comments, and if you have any book recommendations of your own, I encourage you to visit the “Book Recommendations from You” page in the upper menu and leave your recommendations in the comments. Tomorrow, we shall look at another Famous Quote, and until then, happy reading!

Cheers,

BookNerd

Another Book for my Collection

nerdfighters rules Hello Fellow BookNerds!

So, with the power out and nothing else to do, I spent my Earth Hour in downtown Ottawa, rummaging through the various books at my all time favorite place within walking distance; Chapters! I hadn’t been in a while, on account of me being busy with homework and a plethora of other things, so it made for a nice change of pace. I was only planning on looking, not touching, but of course I should have known better ^_^

I went into the store with my hands empty, and came out with a big smile and the famous works of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle contained within the bag swinging at my wrist. I could barely wait to get home before immersing myself in the stories. Thank my lucky stars it was too dark out, otherwise I would have been reminded of my nasty habit of becoming motion sick when I walk and read at the same time … really, just any kind of motion coupled with focusing on tiny words seems to turn my stomach, which is bizarre but it is what it is.

Anyway, back to the more important point to this story. I only had the chance to start reading the first Sherlockean tale, A Scandal in Bohemia, but I could already feel myself slipping into the shoes of the brilliant detective. As you know, I am a huge fan of the newly remade versions of Sherlock Holmes, most notably the BBC series Sherlock where they took this historic icon and placed him within a modern setting. The main reason I bought this book, aside from the fact that it was 80% off, is that I wanted to see how much the character had changed. Even though Sherlock has existed within different time periods, and had come upon different varieties of crime, I have found that the personality and overall attributes of the character have remained the same! It’s amazing! No matter how much Sherlock’s surroundings have changed, he himself has remained more or less unchanged, and I think that is why I find him so fascinating ^_^

So, the book I found is called The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle, and it is a compilation of the first 12 Sherlock stories ever published. Each story is about a chapter long, so it probably won’t take long to get through, but sometimes a story doesn’t need to be a thousand pages long to be worth reading. Here is the books synopsis, for those of you unfamiliar with this crime solving detective:

collins-classics  Sherlock Holmes was transformed when he was hot upon such a scent as this. Men who had only known the quiet thinker and logician of Baker Street would have failed to recognize him. His face flushed and darkened. His brows were drawn into two hard black lines, while his eyes shone out from beneath them with a steely glitter.”

“Set against the foggy, mysterious backdrops of London and the English countryside, these are the first twelve stories ever published to feature the infamous Detective Sherlock Holmes and his side-kick Doctor Watson. They first appeared as stories in the Strand magazine and feature some of his most famous and enjoyable cases, including ‘A Scandal in Bohemia’, ‘The Adventure of the Blue Carbuncle’, and ‘The Red-Headed League’.”

So, if you’re like me, and you’re impatiently waiting for the third Sherlock series to finally air, then I would recommend you pick up a copy of this book. I’ll give you a complete book review once I have completed the 12 stories, but I can tell you that there are very few books that make me want to read no matter where I am, and this is one of them.

That’s all for today. I would be interested in knowing how you all spent your Earth Hour on March 23rd: did you take a walk? Go to a party? Take a nap? Figured out a formula which would allow for time travel? Let me know in the comments, and until next time, happy reading!

Cheers,

BookNerd