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Saturday, May 17, 2014

TYG: A Study in Scarlet

Hi everyone! Well, prom is tonight, and as such I'm taking a break from blogging (because, obviously, I need all day to get ready. Duh). I'll be back next week! In the meantime, please enjoy this 'emergency' post I've had ready and waiting (because, yes, I'm obsessive enough to write out emergency posts). TTFN!!

Remember that thing I talked incessantly about last fall, The Classics Club? Well, believe it or not, I've still been working through my own classics list, even if the going has been slow. While the reading progress has been okay, I simply don't like writing book reviews. :) But! I want to, and therefore will try to get all caught up soon enough.

In December (yes, I'm that behind!) I read A Study in Scarlet by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. The first of the Sherlock Holmes mysteries, it was a much anticipated re-read. I love re-reading books, because I usually forget everything that happened, and therefore it's like reading a totally new book, with the guarantee that I'm going to love it. Perfect!

In A Study in Scarlet, we not only get to see how Holmes and Watson become the famous pair, but are also introduced to Lestrade, in all his hopelessness. This installment differs from the other mysteries in that it's a full novel by itself, rather than a collection. Also, there is a long section in the middle where we are brought to the American midwest, and follow a story for several chapters, before returning to Baker street.

I have ALWAYS loved this particular Holmes mystery. I'd actually forgotten that the Mormon romance was in this book, and was so happy when I finally figured it out. That section is easily my favorite part of the book, even though it might be a bit confusing for first-time readers.

Re-reading it for the first time since Sherlock came out, I was over the moon at how awesome BBC did turning it into a modernized TV series. The first Sherlock episode, A Study in Pink, is based off of this book, and really follows it closely. The scene where Watson and Sherlock meet is extremely similar, just updated, and the 'rache' scraped into the floor is reversed. While I had known some of the references from my previous reading, I was surprised by how many little ones there were, too! Definitely adds to the fun of the read for fandom members.

Like I said, this Mormon romance mystery is one of my favorites. However, I find that it's more because of the well developed extra characters and complicated plot, rather than the Sherlock-ness of it. In other words, this isn't the best mystery for seeing Holmes in action. I feel like Doyle expounds on Holme's powers of deduction and disguise in the later books, and there's certainly more physical chase-the-criminal drama in his other mysteries. So even though this is one of my tops, it doesn't portray Sherlock Holmes as well as the others.

To sum up, then...

A Study in Scarlet by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

Read if: You are into the classics, cozy crime, or traditional British lifestyle. Sherlock fandom members should definitely read this, if only to further your appreciation for the writing and plot of A Study in Pink.

When to read: My personal preference is in the winter. I read the second half of the novel one Sunday morning when it was too snowy to get to church, and that's now my favorite time to read them. Definitely a curl up by the fireplace sort of mystery.

After you've read it: If you liked A Study in Scarlet, then I would definitely recommend the Agatha Christie mysteries. While Hercule Poirot is probably a closer match to Sherlock Holmes (as if anyone could 'match' Holmes!), I can't resist suggesting my personal favorite, By the Pricking of My Thumbs, a Tommy and Tuppence mystery. If you want more of Sherlock himself, the Enola Holmes Mysteries by Nancy Springer are a quick, quirky spin-off with a steampunk feel.

Outfit Details: blouse / / stole from mum, pencil skirt / / thrifted, heels / / thrifted, belt / / came with another dress, necklace / / heirloom, headband / / goody.

Previously Worn: toile pencil skirt: #1, #2, #3, #4, #5, #6., black patent heels: #1, #2.

Like what you see? Check out my other Thrifty Yankee Girl and The Classics Club posts!

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