As a classic novel, this book succeeds admirably. Its language is modern and its cultural references are neatly explained in the endnotes (my copy is the Modern Library Classics edition). As a mystery novel, this book did not capture my interest. I would rather follow along as Holmes solves the mystery rather than having him explain his thinking after the criminal is in custody. That said, I plan to read at least the next Sherlock Holmes mystery. First in a series; sequels include The Sign of the Four, Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes, The Return of Sherlock Holmes, The Hound of the Baskervilles, The Valley of Fear, His Last Bow, and The Case-Book of Sherlock Holmes.
Ill be honest, I can see why this wasnt a favorite for too many peopleIt was going pretty well, you get to the point where Holmes and Watson catch the perpetrator, only to have the chapter end and for the book to move on to Part II. Part II starts off in a completely different place with completely different characters - I was completely lost! (I just used completely 3 times in a sentence, that cant be good). It went on like this for chapters with only a small amount of hints suggesting that this was still actually part of the book I had been reading earlier. Finally in the end everything connects together, but the transition wasnt even a transition at all and I think that was a little frustrating. I will continue on to read the other stories, however for now Ill be taking a Sherlock Holmes break
Blogged about here http://elliek.wordpress.com/2008/12/16/a-study-in-scarlet/
If you haven't read Sherlock Holmes or want to begin again, Arthur Conan Doyle's Study in Scarlet is the first published story involving the legendary Sherlock Holmes. Dr. Watson, a military surgeon lately returned from the Afghan War. Watson needs a flat-mate and a diversion. Holmes needs a foil. And thus a great literary collaboration begins.
Watson and Holmes move to a now-famous address, 221B Baker Street, where Watson is introduced to Holmes's eccentricities as well as his uncanny ability to deduce information about his fellow beings.
Then murder. Facing a deserted house, a twisted corpse with no wounds, a mysterious phrase drawn in blood on the wall, and the buffoons of Scotland Yard--Lestrade and Gregson--Holmes measures, observes, picks up a pinch of this and a pinch of that, and generally baffles his faithful Watson. There are few people who, if you told them a result, would be able to evolve from their own inner consciousness what the steps were which led up to that result." Holmes is in that elite group.
It is when Holmes and Watson gather before the coal fire and Holmes sums up the deductions that led him to the successful apprehension of the criminal that we are most captivated. DON'[T MISS THIS ONE!
Anonymous reviewed A Study in Scarlet (Wordsworth Classics) on
This book is great if you want to try Sherlock Holmes, but don't want to invest in the entire series. A Study in Scarlet is Doyle's first book featuring Holmes and Watson, and it's a great story. This particular edition is really nice as it has footnotes in the back to help explain some of the terms and slang that was used at the time. A thoroughly enjoyable mystery!