When A Study in Scarlet was first printed in 1887 no one would have believed that the main characters would be so popular. In fact it is commonly believed that fandom as we know it today was started due to Doyle’s strange detective. The insanity of the character’s popularity was seen after Doyle killed the great detective off in 1893’s The Adventure of the Final Problem. When it was published fans attacked him in the street, sent hate mail and made his life unbearable.In an effort to get them to let him and his family be The Return of Sherlock Holmes was published in 1903.
It has been over a hundred years since that first short story was published, and the Victorian detective is still popular. There have been many radio, movie & TV adaptations of the novels, comic book appearances, and plays. There have been updates to the series setting him in the 1980s and the 2000s. There was a futuristic version where he is brought back to life to fight crime with Watson’s great grandchild and even one where he fights Dracula. But in all of them the core image remains: a brilliant, observant man with an overactive ego and an inability to understand & accept the limits of others. A sociopath? Autistic prodigy? Who knows. He is shown to be the best and the worst of all of us.
And yet in the last few decades the stories have extended from the core material. There are various live stories where we see Irene Adler marring the Great Detective and a 14 book series where an older Holmes meets and marries a young woman who is his equal in intelligence & skills. There is a young adult series where we learn the origins of the Baker Street Irregulars, another one where we learn of the younger Holmes sister who is determined to be the first Female detective and a series of adventures of Holmes & Mycroft as young boys. (Sort of like the Hardy Boys, which was based off of Holmes.) . Even Mrs. Hudson has her own novel. These days fan fiction and ship/slash fiction is written online and there are many Sherlock/Watson pairs.
It is amazing how this disagreeable character still fascinates us and inspires us.
That being said, we here at Unique Reads have just received a collection of Sherlock Holmes novels and are steadily placing them online at our biblio.com selling page. If you are looking for a good read, and an interesting take on the Great Detective, please come and check it out.