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Old February 1 2013, 01:39 PM   #1720
Allyn Gibson
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Re: So What Are you Reading?: Generations

S. Gomez wrote: View Post
Allyn Gibson wrote: View Post
TJ Sinclair wrote: View Post
I've been eying that one on the shelf for a while now. Definitely interested to hear if it's worth picking up. I enjoyed some of Horowitz' YA fiction years ago, and this is the guy that created Foyle's War, so hopefully it's good.
To the point where I am (seventy-five pages), I have mixed feelings.
I'm interested in hearing what you thought of it when you're done. I enjoyed the book a lot, though not quite as much as the original stories. The solution to the mystery is very, very different from anything Doyle would have written, yet the book still somehow remains convincingly in-universe. I found there was a touch of melancholy in Watson's narration at some points, as he realizes this is the last tale he'll ever tell about his friend.
I finished it on Sunday after Downton Abbey, and I posted some thoughts on my blog.

Here's a key sentence from that: "Silk reads as if Horowitz decided to write a “Sherlock Holmes greatest hits” novel, and he decided to pack in so many of the iconic scenes and passages from the Canon as he could that, by the end, I was half expecting an appearance by Irene Adler."

By and large I thought the writing felt like Watson's, though there were some moments when it really didn't like when Watson comments from his future vantage point on the events in the story's present.

"The Adventure of the Flat-Cap Gang" was, I thought, a little mundane, but it also felt more authentically Canonical. "The Adventure of the House of Silk" had more in common with some of the more lurid Jack-the-Ripper theories and didn't feel very Canonical at all. Ironically, it was the House of Silk mystery that I solved (except for where it was) before it was solved in the book, and I didn't suss out the Flat-Cap Gang solution at all.

I admired the book more than I liked it. It's well-written, it's certainly evocative and gripping, but I also didn't find it to be anything special -- or worthy of the critical notice it received for being authorized by the Doyle estate. It's nothing more than another Sherlock Holmes pastiche.
"When David Marcus cited the great thinkers of history -- "Newton, Einstein, Surak" -- Newt Gingrich did not make his list." -- 24 January 2012
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