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The year is 1896. Doctor Watson is invited to the Dorsetshire coast by an old friend. To Watson's surprise he manages to persuade his good friend, Mr Sherlock Holmes to accompany him. This hitherto unknown tale of Watson's involves romancing, dancing, occasional glasses of cider, but the holiday turns into a nightmare as the two old friends encounter an unimaginable evil w The year is 1896. Doctor Watson is invited to the Dorsetshire coast by an old friend. To Watson's surprise he manages to persuade his good friend, Mr Sherlock Holmes to accompany him. This hitherto unknown tale of Watson's involves romancing, dancing, occasional glasses of cider, but the holiday turns into a nightmare as the two old friends encounter an unimaginable evil which threatens their very souls. Can they triumph? - Fully revised and expanded 2nd edition.


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The year is 1896. Doctor Watson is invited to the Dorsetshire coast by an old friend. To Watson's surprise he manages to persuade his good friend, Mr Sherlock Holmes to accompany him. This hitherto unknown tale of Watson's involves romancing, dancing, occasional glasses of cider, but the holiday turns into a nightmare as the two old friends encounter an unimaginable evil w The year is 1896. Doctor Watson is invited to the Dorsetshire coast by an old friend. To Watson's surprise he manages to persuade his good friend, Mr Sherlock Holmes to accompany him. This hitherto unknown tale of Watson's involves romancing, dancing, occasional glasses of cider, but the holiday turns into a nightmare as the two old friends encounter an unimaginable evil which threatens their very souls. Can they triumph? - Fully revised and expanded 2nd edition.

52 review for Sherlock Holmes and the Lyme Regis Horror

  1. 5 out of 5

    Leah

    This book is divided between a novella (The Lyme Regis Horror) and several short stories. First, the novella: Ruffle knows Holmes and Watson very well; canon devotees will find plenty of insider references and familiar-sounding (though not verbatim) phrases. The Watsonian voice is decently done and witty; Ruffle stays in his narrator’s head the entire time. Holmes is mellower than he is often portrayed; he also seems to know more about Jane Austen than one would suspect of a man who sneers at so This book is divided between a novella (The Lyme Regis Horror) and several short stories. First, the novella: Ruffle knows Holmes and Watson very well; canon devotees will find plenty of insider references and familiar-sounding (though not verbatim) phrases. The Watsonian voice is decently done and witty; Ruffle stays in his narrator’s head the entire time. Holmes is mellower than he is often portrayed; he also seems to know more about Jane Austen than one would suspect of a man who sneers at softer emotions. On another interesting note, Holmes (using his impossible/improbable line of reasoning) is convinced early on that the culprit in the first story is supernatural, while the two physicians take some convincing. I never felt, however, that either Holmes or Watson was veering out of character. One of Ruffle’s great strengths is his ear for dialogue; it rarely rings false, and is often quite funny such as when Watson informs Mrs. Jacobs that his writing is not for children, or the Inspector advises everyone not to “quibble with small details.” If a little too much time is spent delineating incidents in local history which don’t relate to the plot, it can be forgiven; Watson does like travel guides. When it’s time to bring the suspense, Ruffle delivers as well. The atmosphere changes perceptibly when Sarah Jacobs opens the door to the Count. The following confrontation is electrifying, and reminds the reader that Holmes is truly master of the “and the horse you came in on” speech. The feeling of dread continues as Holmes, Watson, and Jacobs ready themselves for battle; they don’t know whether or not they’re coming back, and neither do we. In fact, as they walk towards the manor in dark of early morning, Ruffle’s description is so skillful, the chills are palpable. Ruffle’s ability as a writer is, finally, evident in his deceptively simple denouement. In it, he takes up a thread I had thought dangling and superfluous, using it to pull the physical and emotional parts of the story together. I won’t divulge any more except to say that, as a writer, I admired the skill with which he accomplished this, and found myself thinking about it all day. “The Trumper Affiar” (previously published as an e-pub on Amazon) is a solid story, written along more traditional lines than “Horror.” Ruffle provides accurate historical details, both in the setting and characters (actual cricket players), and his end notes are a nice touch for history aficionados. Holmes and Watson are also nicely in character and we’re treated to some nice running jokes as Watson continually bores the Great Detective (and occasionally the reader) with lengthy explications of cricket matches, and Holmes finds that the doctor’s novelistic touches have given him some unexpected anonymity. The story is not as atmospheric as “Horror,” but Ruffle performs a very nice sleight-of-hand in concealing the villain, the denouement is darker for its realism, and the ending is quite poignant. Ruffle takes us back to the supernatural in “The Mystery of Loch Ness” and “The Runes Affair.” In the former, a gruesome death forces the reader to apply Holmes’ famous maxim, “that when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.” In “The Runes Affair,” three highly nervous paranormal researchers ask Holmes to help them fend off what seems to be an evil author’s attempt to exact vengeance for poor reviews and rejection slips through supernatural means. Holmes and Watson take on the case to assuage the mens’ fears and meet with unexpected results; one has to wonder whether they might have been manipulated into unwittingly carrying out revenge themselves. Other stories have a supernatural bent as well. Set in more modern times (the 1930′s and the recent past, respectively), “Forever 1895″ and “A Lyme Ghost Story” suggest that Holmes dislikes partiers and inappropriate over night guests, but has a soft spot for pastiche writers. “Timeless in Lyme” is not about phantoms…at least from one perspective. In each of these pieces, Ruffle mixes past and present with the deft touch essential for a satisfying ghost tale. Christmas is another favorite topic. In “Christmas at Baker Street,” Holmes explains to Watson the very best reasons for refusing a knighthood. He exposes even more of his heart in the incredibly charming “Henrietta’s Problem,” giving credence to Jeremy Brett’s view that “Holmes loved children.” My personal favorite in this collection, however, is “Christmas with Holmes,” which has an aging Holmes and Watson spending the holiday together in Sussex in 1916. The end scene is beautiful and while I realized, upon a third reading, that it could have a darker interpretation, I’ll go with my first, sad-but-fitting one. Ruffle ends the book with a lovely poem dedicated to his son, Duncan. So, my final conclusion? Sherlock Holmes and the Lyme Regis Horror is a well-written collection with “the charm of variety,” deserving of a place on your bookshelf or in your e-reader. I look forward to reading more of Ruffle’s work.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Paul Stuart Hayes

    Sherlock Holmes and the Lyme Regis Horror is a collection of Sherlock Holmes pastiches penned by David Ruffle. I read a lot of Sherlock Holmes books, some good, some bad. This one is definitely in the 'good' category. The majority of the stories stray away from the confines of the Canon, and run along more of a supernatural style. Normally I prefer Sherlock Holmes pastiches that have the more traditional set up, but the author did his job very well and my interest in the stories didn’t wane for a Sherlock Holmes and the Lyme Regis Horror is a collection of Sherlock Holmes pastiches penned by David Ruffle. I read a lot of Sherlock Holmes books, some good, some bad. This one is definitely in the 'good' category. The majority of the stories stray away from the confines of the Canon, and run along more of a supernatural style. Normally I prefer Sherlock Holmes pastiches that have the more traditional set up, but the author did his job very well and my interest in the stories didn’t wane for a moment. The majority of the collection is comprised by a novella which goes by the same title as that of the book. 'The Lyme Regis Horror' is an exceptional piece of work, a story which builds up at a steady pace and the interplay between Doctor Watson and Mrs. Heidler very well handled. The rest of the book is made up of short stories and vignettes, for me the pick of these is ‘The Trumper Affair’, a short story that mirrors Conan Doyle’s style of storytelling very well. In fact it’s the kind of story I could imagine Conan Doyle himself writing. All in all, it’s a very good book, well researched and well written – I’d recommend it to all Holmes enthusiasts.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Mike Hogan

    Sherlock Holmes and the Lyme Regis Horror. I read the first story in this compilation with great enjoyment; it has a strong plot, well-drawn minor characters and above all a believable relationship between the two main protagonists, Holmes and Watson. I very much like the fact that Watson is given time to develop not only an affection for the town of Lyme Regis (which the author clearly shares), but a sensitively-portrayed love interest. For me, although Holmes deploys his intellect and other re Sherlock Holmes and the Lyme Regis Horror. I read the first story in this compilation with great enjoyment; it has a strong plot, well-drawn minor characters and above all a believable relationship between the two main protagonists, Holmes and Watson. I very much like the fact that Watson is given time to develop not only an affection for the town of Lyme Regis (which the author clearly shares), but a sensitively-portrayed love interest. For me, although Holmes deploys his intellect and other resources to solve the case, it is Watson who is at the sharp end when push comes to shove. In my view the next best story is a charming evocation of cricket in one of its several golden ages. Stalwart men with names like Trumper, Darling and Tomlinson uphold the spirit of the game against a bounder intent on mischief. The other stories and vignettes are icing on the cake. I thoroughly recommend this anthology.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Pat

    Sherlock Holmes and The Lyme Regis Horror by David Ruffle is a brilliantly written and captivating tale that takes the reader on a new, exciting but dark and dangerous journey that has suspense, mystery, love and an overwhelming sense of evil. Told through the eyes of a charming and captivating Dr Watson, David has captured perfectly the eccentric genius that is Holmes and given an enlightening insight into the friendship and relationship of the two protagonists as they are drawn into an intrigu Sherlock Holmes and The Lyme Regis Horror by David Ruffle is a brilliantly written and captivating tale that takes the reader on a new, exciting but dark and dangerous journey that has suspense, mystery, love and an overwhelming sense of evil. Told through the eyes of a charming and captivating Dr Watson, David has captured perfectly the eccentric genius that is Holmes and given an enlightening insight into the friendship and relationship of the two protagonists as they are drawn into an intriguing but evil chain of events. David’s fabulous descriptive detail of the lanes and byways, buildings, sights, sound and atmosphere obviously come from his knowledge of, and affection for, the area and coupled with the interesting historical facts are certainly an added bonus. Several shorter, all just as engaging, tales complete this thrilling read. I am very much looking forward to reading more.

  5. 5 out of 5

    M.k. Yost

    Good god: poor grammar, dozens of printing errors, and completely non-canonical. I've read better fan fiction. Good god: poor grammar, dozens of printing errors, and completely non-canonical. I've read better fan fiction.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Philip Jones

    This book is an anthology that consists of a short novel, a novella, nine short stories/fragments and a poem, all related, more or less, to Lyme Regis. This is the second edition and it contains additional material to the first edition as well as a number of editing changes. The main story violates Holmes’ dictum, that “no ghosts need apply.” If that is overlooked, what is left is a lively and engaging tale about a picturesque village and time. The Watson telling the tale is one of the most enga This book is an anthology that consists of a short novel, a novella, nine short stories/fragments and a poem, all related, more or less, to Lyme Regis. This is the second edition and it contains additional material to the first edition as well as a number of editing changes. The main story violates Holmes’ dictum, that “no ghosts need apply.” If that is overlooked, what is left is a lively and engaging tale about a picturesque village and time. The Watson telling the tale is one of the most engaging I have met. He has the loyalty, the manners and the honesty all Sherlockians have come to revere along with a knowing twinkle in his eye. Holmes is Holmes, a bit older than we are accustomed to, but with the keen eye and lack of pretense, inhibition or tact we all associate with him. The other characterizations in the story are well-done, producing sharp images and clear impressions. The basic premise of the tale has a supernatural element that is alien to the Canon, with no scientific justification. It requires a ‘willing suspension of disbelief’ and it strained my reserves of such disbelief. However, if we can gloss over and forget Doyle’s descent into Spiritualism, we can surely forgive The Master a reaction to events that reach beyond the science of his time and place. It is evident that Holmes reacts reasonably and effectively to the circumstances he faces. The question is whether those circumstances could ever occur. “Further deponent sayeth not.” The novella, “The Trumper Affair,” is engaging and well-written. Holmes solves a minor mystery and Watson’s love of Cricket is fully indulged. A number of ‘turn of the Century’ Cricket personalities are featured and the Twentieth Century British Empire is introduced. The new collection of short pieces is expanded and ‘punched up’ a bit, but it remains incomplete and fragmentary. The items included are all emotional and interesting, but most are only glimpses of Holmes and Watson or of their lasting impressions. Time wanders in and out of the narratives and impressions are more important than details. The results of reading this book are a desire to visit Lyme Regis and a hope to see more of this comforting Watson, who is just what one always felt Watson should be. Re-reviewed by: Philip K. Jones, August, 2012. Published in “Doctor Watson’s Formulary,” [#21, 09/2012]

  7. 4 out of 5

    Dale

    An encounter with a certain Count… My thanks go out to Steve and Timi at MX Books for my reading copy! May, 1896. Doctor Watson has been invited to Lyme Regis, a coastal town in West Dorset, England by a friend from his university days. To his delight and surprise, Sherlock Holmes agrees to accompany him. Upon arrival, Doctor Godfrey Jacobs reveals that this is more than a friendly visit. There is a dark mystery in this sleepy little town, and Jacobs hopes that Holmes can solve it. It began when a s An encounter with a certain Count… My thanks go out to Steve and Timi at MX Books for my reading copy! May, 1896. Doctor Watson has been invited to Lyme Regis, a coastal town in West Dorset, England by a friend from his university days. To his delight and surprise, Sherlock Holmes agrees to accompany him. Upon arrival, Doctor Godfrey Jacobs reveals that this is more than a friendly visit. There is a dark mystery in this sleepy little town, and Jacobs hopes that Holmes can solve it. It began when a schooner was blown into the harbor on a freak storm. When the locals went to check on it, it was found to have no one on board. There are three long crates floating in the water. These are salvaged, and the men return to shore. The ship vanishes in the night without flotsam or jetsam remaining. The crates contain only dirt. They are claimed by a Transylvanian Nobleman by name of Count Orlana. (Cue spooky music. I am certain the reader can deduce the story from this point on.) There is enough original material and characters to stop this from being a total rip-off of the plot of Dracula, but it is close… The expanded version includes eleven short stories. They vary in length, but I think they will be of interest to any Holmes aficionado. There is the trumpet player who is afraid of being kidnapped, a problem at Loch Ness, a possible haunting, and much more! I give the book three and a half stars… Quoth the Raven…

  8. 5 out of 5

    S

    Ehh, just okay. It has some really cute stories at the end, but the main plot was boring, and I didn't feel like the characters were in danger or had a sense of urgency about the entire affair. Watson's romance is just as ill-conceived as it was in The Sign of Four-- moreso because the author relies very heavily on Mary Morstan for the character of the love interest. Also, I've never been to Lyme Regis. From this, I get that it's apparently a great place to visit, but I felt alienated, like I wa Ehh, just okay. It has some really cute stories at the end, but the main plot was boring, and I didn't feel like the characters were in danger or had a sense of urgency about the entire affair. Watson's romance is just as ill-conceived as it was in The Sign of Four-- moreso because the author relies very heavily on Mary Morstan for the character of the love interest. Also, I've never been to Lyme Regis. From this, I get that it's apparently a great place to visit, but I felt alienated, like I was missing a joke that "townspeople" would have gotten, instead of transported to a fascinating locale.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Pamela

    This was a book about Sherlock Holmes and his adventures from the narrative of DR. Watson. The story takes place in a small costal town, on what should be a holiday. Then there is a murder, and the game is afoot. This has a supernatural tone to it, and I did not mind that at all. I found the book very interesting, and look forward to book 2 of this trilogy.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Calvin Daniels

    The book let Watson have his moment, but sadly in a story which read far too much like SH vsDracuka by Loren Estleman, a book written years earlier.Hard to recommend a clonish tale.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Trish

    loved it

  12. 5 out of 5

    Maria Kirwan

  13. 5 out of 5

    Glen Butler

  14. 5 out of 5

    Carla

  15. 5 out of 5

    Amy Thomas

  16. 5 out of 5

    Charlotte Walters

  17. 5 out of 5

    Steven

  18. 4 out of 5

    Amir Abdulkhaev

  19. 5 out of 5

    Natalie

  20. 4 out of 5

    Eshfaqur Rahman

  21. 5 out of 5

    Jaime

  22. 4 out of 5

    Demeter

  23. 5 out of 5

    Mark

  24. 5 out of 5

    David Ruffle

  25. 5 out of 5

    Marilyn Jones

  26. 5 out of 5

    David Seddon

  27. 4 out of 5

    Nessa

  28. 4 out of 5

    Cecilia Dunbar Hernandez

  29. 5 out of 5

    Jacquelyn

  30. 5 out of 5

    George

  31. 5 out of 5

    Gitte

  32. 4 out of 5

    Kat

  33. 4 out of 5

    Paula

  34. 5 out of 5

    Jim Dean

  35. 4 out of 5

    Aaditee

  36. 4 out of 5

    Denise

  37. 4 out of 5

    Marie-Louise

  38. 5 out of 5

    Kasane Teto

  39. 4 out of 5

    Ron Jenkins

  40. 4 out of 5

    MSCOZY

  41. 5 out of 5

    Robert Enzenauer

  42. 4 out of 5

    Ross Vincent

  43. 4 out of 5

    A.L. Butcher

  44. 4 out of 5

    Joe Riggs

  45. 4 out of 5

    Amanda

  46. 4 out of 5

    Steve Emecz

  47. 4 out of 5

    Charlotte Smith

  48. 4 out of 5

    Roger Johnson

  49. 5 out of 5

    Jess

  50. 5 out of 5

    Phil Growick

  51. 5 out of 5

    Amy Evans

  52. 4 out of 5

    Tim

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