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The Hound of the Baskervilles ~ Arthur Conan Doyle

October 17, 2009

Genre: Mystery

Publisher: Aladdin Paperbacks

246 pages

ISBN: 9780689835711

One of Doyle’s better known Holmes stories, The Hound of the Baskervilles, is one that begins in benign city drudgery and ends  in the sensational, sensual moors of the countryside. A family history, plagued by the evil tale of a spiritual being, imposes itself on the pragmatic and scientific modernity of Holmes and Watson’s practice, throwing them for a ghostly loop.

When I was in third grade, I “read” the Hound of the Baskervilles. I had been given a collection of Doyle’s Holmes stories by some well-intentioned relative and being the avid little reader that I was, dug in. I remember very few of the the other stories but because I was, even (or especially) at 9, an avid animal advocate, I remember the The Hound.

At least I thought I did. When I am distressed about the things my son (currently 19 months) is reading in seven and a half years, I’ll have to remind myself that The Hound stuck with me in little part regarding the plot. The tawdry implied love affairs and inherent violence had no effect on me at that age. I think I read it simply because of the dog.

Of course, as a 26 year old, Watson’s recount of the countryside drama, packed with supernatural intrigue, holds much more weight. There are great writers still working today and they’ll certainly do in a pinch but there is nothing quite like the witty one liners and beautiful mysterious prose of Dolye’s stories. Through and through its tiny entirety, the Hound of the Baskerville is fantastic craftsmanship and an inevitable crowd favorite.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. stacybuckeye permalink
    October 19, 2009 3:10 pm

    I need to read this one. Great review.

  2. October 23, 2009 12:18 pm

    This was also a favorite of mine growing up… I believe I read the complete unabridged works of Doyle at least twice.

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