In which street is the Diogenes Club?
A Study in Pink is a problem deserving how many nicotine patches?
Who is found dead in a locked chamber, with a poison dart above his ear?
Which company employed a secretary to answer Sherlock-related mail?
What kind of creature swallowed the Blue Carbuncle?
And in which TV episode can we find a cross-dressing Jude Law?
From Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s immortal stories to Sherlock and Elementary, through a century of Sherlock on the silver screen and on television, The Sherlock Holmes Quiz Book is packed with 1000 questions to test the wits of every armchair detective. Whether your favourite Holmes is Rathbone or Brett, Cumberbatch or Miller, whether you search with magnifying glass or mobile phone, here are clues, codes and conundrums to challenge the sharpest of sleuths. A must for every true Sherlock fan.
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Mr Russell Horsfield, A.K.A. Jacques the Stippler, wanted for the murders of Claude Monet, James Whistler and Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, by drowning in turps, aggravated pointillism and culpable chiaroscurocide, in the Giverny Garden Massacre of 1882.
Monsieur Jacques wants to paint your picture. Best if you smile.
Mr Deakin Brook, A.K.A. The Demon Book Binder of Bishopsgate. Feel free to browse the volumes on his shelves, but be aware that not putting a book back, where you found it, properly on the shelf and not dumped on top of the other books, is an offense punishable by… let’s just say it’s best not to study the leather of the book-bindings too closely…
Mr Andrew Murray, formerly Mr Osgoode ‘Ozymandias’ Trelawny. Builder of seventeen ‘unsinkable’ leviathans. Wanted for multiple counts of gross industrial negligence, and the culpable homicides by drowning of 2,321 British Crown Subjects and 349 foreign persons, including the entire Royal Circus of Warsaw, all but one of the Woolwich Lackadasicals First XI, and a Carpathian nun.
Mr Murray would like to employ you on the sea trials of his latest maritime marvel. He hopes you can swim.
The Sons of Sherlock are Messrs Murray, Brook and Horsfield of 221SoS Baker Street, united in a passion to promulgate the finest Sherlock Holmes related literature and aids to modern living – united, also, in the house arrest that, through intricate plea-bargaining and those Daguerrotypes of the Judge with A Certain Personage, saved them from the hangman’s noose.
You will have heard much of the Sons of Sherlock – much that is of the most vulgar and sensationalist tone, tawdry headlines calculated to inflame the base passions of the most ignoble in our society. Be not afraid! For 92% of these alleged deeds have been scientifically disproved by Mr James Clerk Maxwell of the Royal Society. The other 8% were committed under such a noxious haze of ether and Moldovan snuff that Messrs Murray, Brook and Horsfield cannot remember which one of them did it. So you have a two in three chance of being fine.
The Enlightenment Society of New Brunswick and the Marylebone Impracticals heartily endorse these publications for the improved understanding of Sherlock Holmes in every corner of England and the Colonies. If you are dissatisfied with the crime-solving capabilities of your local constabulary, we urge you to commit a murder or comparable crime – your constabulary will in the end only thank you for the opportunity to learn and improve.
It’s a great time to be a Sherlock Holmes fan, with Guy Ritchie’s steampunk juggernauts thundering across our cinema screens, Elementary giving us a transatlantic rehab Holmes and a female Watson, and of course, of course, Sherlock – as I write in early autumn 2013, we await the whys and wherefores of Sherlock’s resurrection from that fall…
The process of writing this quiz book has refreshed so many memories. Poring over the Conan Doyle canon and turning again to Sherlock has filled me with admiration anew for all of Gatiss and Moffat’s sly nods to the originals, affectionate while entirely modern. But above all, to cast an eagle’s eye over a century and more of Sherlock interpretations, from William Gillette’s Edwardian stage performances to Basil Rathbone’s wartime derring-do, from Jeremy Brett’s definitive television depiction to the zeitgeisty shows of today, is to see how every generation can successfully recast Sherlock in their own image. Rathbone’s Holmes is incisively straightforward, a suitably no-nonsense hero for a world at war; Brett’s Holmes is a twitchy, neurotic performance for an age familiar with the idea of the psychoanalyst’s couch and wanting darkness in all its heroes; and today’s Sherlock is either an autistic savant or a drying out drug-addict. Conan Doyle has given us a Sherlock-shaped mould into which we can cast our molten fears and obsessions, over and over again, and the mould shows no sign of breaking just yet.
Who’s the greatest Sherlock? For myself it depends on my thirst of the moment: if I’m craving a swig of Holmes Classic then I’ll unscrew a bottle of Brett; if I’m in the mood for an illicit brew, full of all sorts of perilous wartime additives, then I’ll dust down a vintage Rathbone ’42; but if I want a Holmes that fizzes on my tongue and froths in my nostrils and makes me feel alive, right now, then I’ll order a triple-shot Cumberbatchaccino from Speedy’s Cafe.
But what do you care what I think? Every Sherlock is a true child of the original, headstrong and rebellious, but carrying his father’s DNA. It’s all good. So why are you wasting time reading this? Have fun with the quizzes!
Who’s your favourite Dr Watson? Martin Freeman or Jude Law? Lucy Liu or Edward Hardwicke? It’s so hard to choose, so spare a thought for poor Sherlock Holmes – faced with so many Watsons old and new, what will he do?
Who’s too techno-garish?
Who’s too teddy-bearish?
Who’s maybe too pretty?
Who’s in the wrong city?
Who’s the right Watson in Holmes’s own view?
And is Sherlock’s Watson the Watson for you?
An ideal Chrimbletide gift for the Sherlockian (Holmesian?) in your life!
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