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  1. I can second my mate Herlock's recommendation of Denis O. Smith. For a wide selection of some of the best Holmes pastiche out there, try any volume of David Marcum's MX New Adventures of Sherlock Holmes anthologies. Collected in 32 volumes since 2015, averaging about 3 a year, that's over 700 new Holmes adventures to choose from. Quite a few of these are Denis's. I am still lost way back in the upper teens somewhere as I had to call a halt to my pastiche collecting. It was becoming obsessive and I've gotta say, these are all very thick books. 100% of the profits go to support Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's former home, Undershaw, which after having fallen into rack and ruin, has been renovated into a thriving school community for students with developmental disabilities, thanks in part to the proceeds from these books. There is also a Conan Doyle/Holmes museum/shrine on the site that welcomes the public when school is not in session. https://www.amazon.com/s?k=mx+sherlock+holmes&crid=29AWRQKU2P199&sprefix=MX+sherlock+ho%2Caps%2C81&ref=nb_sb_ss_ts-doa-p_1_14 The problem with choosing pastiches is not that there isn't enough to choose from--it's the reverse. There are seemingly dozens of new Sherlock Holmes projects being released annually in books, TV and film. Some of it stellar, a lot of it mediocre to terrible. I have zero interest in making Sherlock Holmes a space man on Mars, thank you. Off the top of my head, my very favorite story in the entire collection is in Book V: Christmas Adventures (2016) and details the carnage that ensues when Mrs. Hudson leaves her two bachelor tenants alone during the festive period because she's gone to see her niece who's having a baby. Left to their own devices, Sherlock and John decide that yes, a graduate chemist highly trained in forensic methodology and a top flight medical surgeon CAN handle preparing their own Christmas dinner with all the fixings. In this estimation, they are quite, quite wrong. Why is it that Sherlock Holmes can deduce a man's entire life history from his cuffs but firing up an oven stymies him altogether? Among his esoteric skills, cookery is not on the list, and Dr. Watson is equally hopeless. One might have expected a surgeon to have more fortitude when it came to cutting up a dead bird. Let's just say it's good that Mrs. Hudson was not at home to see what her two bachelors plus assorted street urchins did to the place while she was gone. Another favorite adventure, this from the collection "In the Company of Sherlock Holmes" (King and Klinger, eds.) is 'Dunkirk' by John Lescroart. During Operation Dynamo in May, 1940, a mysterious, very old but extremely vigorous gentleman, name of Sigerson, does his bit to evacuate the Dunkirk beaches to the amazement of everyone. Mark Rylance, who captained such a vessel in the Christopher Nolan movie of the same title really could have used Sigerson aboard and things would have turned out better for him and his crew.
    2 points
  2. Same in my life, I have to say... When I had covid at Easter, I remarked that it wasn't even the most ill I'd been that year- never mind in life! Ha. Yeah, life 's a bit of a...you know what, at the moment. xx
    2 points
  3. Sounds adorable (and a bit demanding).
    2 points
  4. Any Brits watching this new Moffat/Vertue/McGuigan production? It stars David Tennant and an excellent supporting cast. I really only watched it for the dedication to Beryl at the end. But as it transpires, it is a punchy, well written and directed series...of course.
    1 point
  5. Thanks, Bev! That doesn't sound like any spoilers to me -- more like just setting the scene.
    1 point
  6. I am always put off by potential spoilers. They don't bother me, but I know some are neurotic about them. But here goes... The opening episode shows parallel stories, on opposites sides of the Atlantic...and a key, link character- an investigative journalist. DT plays a vicar and his story centres around his son's maths tutor and no, they are not having an affair! Anyhow, the woman finds herself in a tricky situation and reaches out to the journalist... who she had encountered on a train. The journalist in turn reaches out to the lead character in The States, as he is s top criminologist- largely dealing with 'puzzles'.
    1 point
  7. That sounds amaaaaaazing! Hobbits and I are about equally voracious when it comes to mushrooms, lol.
    1 point
  8. Definitely an homage to ACD's Holmes and Watson. Mr. Marcum is a purist non pareil and only recognizes the 'canonical' Holmes universe. He has dedicated his life to the Great Holmes Tapestry and 'discovering' new Holmes and Watson adventures--so long as they are plausibly within the era and the milieu created by ACD. Therefore Holmes and Watson must remain English gentlemen of the mid-late Victorian/Edwardian era, doing situationally appropriate things . . Sherlock Holmes therefore cannot morph into a Japanese woman, an inhabitant of the 21st century, blast off to Mars, etc. Mr Marcum also strenuously rejects the conception of Holmes as presented by Laurie R. King in her books. Laurie's got the era right but she's taken unforgiveable liberties in other areas, principally in having SH marry a half-American girl young enough to be his granddaughter and then promptly more or less disappear from the books altogether as time goes by. The story I mention, I think the title is aptly enough, "The Christmas Goose", is firmly in the ACD tradition. It is set early in the partnership, during one of the first Christmases the pair are at 221B. Initially the Christmas dinner was to be overseen by the kitchen girl, but she is trapped in quarantine after going to visit her family and is unable to come back to Baker Street to cook the goose that is rapidly in danger of going off. Under the circumstances the boys have no choice but to use Mrs. Hudson's kitchen, but rationalize that she wouldn't want them to starve. What does happen when she's gone she's better off not knowing and the duo and the Irregulars mostly have the place set to rights by the time she gets back.
    1 point
  9. Thanks Carol! Sadly, as bad as covid was, it’s been the least of my problems these past months. Blahhh.
    1 point
  10. Who do you get to elect? Sorry for the dumb question. I was under the same impression as Carol about role of the monarchy. I get why there are people who want to do away with the establishment, but what surprises me somewhat is the timing and intensity. I've heard hardly any objections really in ages, but now suddenly there is intense outrage en masse. Where has the outrage been for the last decade? You knew you'd be getting a new monarch after the death of Elizabeth II, didn't you? Who's responsible for starting that discussion, and in what format is it to be discussed? Sorry again if these are dumb questions, I'm very curious about this issue.
    1 point
  11. If I'm being totally honest, I think my experience has made me even less in favor of a vaccine mandate than I was before. I know with surety who I got covid from, and this person and I were both vaccinated and both wearing masks when we interacted. I used to be against the mandate based on principle, my own sense of logic, and anecdotes from other people. Now I'm against it based on all those things plus personal experience, lol. Generally speaking, I think exchanging freedom for safety is a bad idea. On principle I don't think people should be coerced into having something injected into their body; especially something so new and untried. Those who are afraid of getting sick are more than welcome to vaccinate and mask up. Those who would rather take the risk should be allowed to. If the vaccine and masks are effective, then both should be more than enough protection for the individual who wants to utilize them. If they're not enough protection, then they're not effective enough to warrant something as serious as a mandate. Just my personal opinion. I'd be a lot happier if everyone would just practice good hygiene and hand-washing. "Sigh" indeed... *sigh*.
    1 point
  12. Another trailer song, cover of "No Woman No Cry".
    1 point
  13. Blu-ray release of Sherlock Hound (Meitantei Hōmuzu, lit. "Famous Detective Holmes"), the Japanese-Italian (Tokyo Movie Shinsha and RAI) co-produced animated series and the last television Anime to be developed by Academy Award winning animation director and Studio Ghibli founder Hayao Miyazaki is up for pre-order by American distributor, Discotek Media. The Blu-ray includes both the entire Japanese and English dubbed versions fully restored along with special features like linear notes, an art gallery and an obscure English dubbed pilot. The Blu-ray is due to be released on November 29th. https://www.rightstufanime.com/Sherlock-Hound-Blu-ray https://twitter.com/discotekmedia/status/1564706427368656896?s=20&t=Jw0bEynMg3l4ITIMBPpGEw
    1 point
  14. Alex re-re-re-watched Dirty Dancing a few days ago, and I happened to walk into the room near the end, when the Kellerman's staff is (repeatedly) performing their resort's "anthem." ... which happens to be sung to the same tune as my university's "alma mater" song. That double whammy got the tune pretty firmly entrenched, and I haven't been able to shake it. I used to think that my university had borrowed the tune from Cornell University's "alma mater" song: ... and perhaps they did -- but I just now learned that Cornell had already borrowed it from an 1857 ballad called "Annie Lisle" (about a young woman who becomes ill and dies): So now that melody is *really* stuck in my head! But at least I have one less thing to feel guilty about!
    1 point
  15. Apparently Charles automatically became king at the instant of Elizabeth's passing. Coronation is traditional and ceremonial, but it won't make him the king. Bev, I could very well understand your feelings if the Prime Ministership suddenly became hereditary. But it doesn't seem to me that Elizabeth's death is quite the time to be discussing whether or not to have a new king. Or are you saying that there should be more effort in general -- not specifically at this time -- toward eliminating or phasing out the monarchy?
    1 point
  16. Apparently that's simply the tradition, and tradition is, after all, the foundation of the current Royal Family. Near as I understand it, they haven't held much actual power for quite some time. If anyone's planning to see the British royalty demoted, now would be an extremely awkward time, what with a good many people feeling grief and even disorientation. Best to wait till the matter can be discussed calmly. I've read that the new King is wanting to decrease the number of people who are officially considered royalty, which could be considered a step in that direction.
    1 point
  17. Hi Carol, I hope you’re well?
    1 point
  18. Had to look twice to get it! I wonder -- are calico guinea pigs (nearly) always female? (Answer: Apparently not -- they have a different system of genes from cats.)
    1 point
  19. Lots of great pastiche writers out there. If I had to suggest one I’d say checkout Denis O Smith. He’s done quite a few collections. Absolutely brilliant.
    1 point
  20. Apologies for my extended absence. Good God Almighty, have I had the summer from Hell. From HELL, I say! Second worst of my life.
    0 points
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