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Related The Special Day. The story wasn't great, but it surely was new. And whatever he writes, Twain is always so adorable, it's not really possible to resist him. You have to read this story to see what Mark Twain did!!!! Shelves: sherlock-holmes , short-stories , detective-mystery. As someone that has read all of the Sherlock Holmes canon, I was doubtful that I would like a parody in which Holmes is described in the following manner: "Anybody that knows him the way I do knows he can't detect a crime except where he plans it all out beforehand and arranges the clues and hires some fellow to commit it according to instructions.

I did not enjoyed reading this book at all. I felt the story was poorly written. The humor I was hoping for in this satirical take on detective stories was nowhere to be found. There were a scene or two which made me laugh but the rest was all confusing and felt incredibly lame, even for a story that is trying to poke fun at the world renowned detective from Baker Street. Twain mocks not only detective stories but also our much vaunted human reason. Rather confusing story, a little hard to follow at times. As to the plot, dark and not well put together if I can say that of Mark Twain. His representation of Sherlock Holmes was disgrace to his name.

Holmes would never have acted in the way he did -stuttering and unsure of himself "He opened his mouth to speak; the words did not come freely. On the whole I didn't care for the book, though there were parts that intrigued me like Archie Stillman's capability of catching a scent. Somewhat believable. There have been countless Sherlock Holmes parodies, but Mark Twain was perhaps the first.

Personally, I'm not so sure. Holmes appears only briefly in this novella, to bungle the murder investigation and accuse the wrong man of the crime. Regardless, it's still lame.


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Mark Twain doing a Sherlock Holmes story. Not his best work, but respectable. This Holmes is not exactly Doyle's Holmes. Worth a look as it's in the public domain. I loathed the jumping frog and couldn't relate to Tom Sawyer in high school, but 30 years ago after a week spent in bed with the flu and Mark Twain's Complete Short Stories, I was totally won over and ready to read anything he'd ever written. Of all of the stories, I remembered this one the most, and it didn't disappoint the second time around. A glorious send-up of Sherlock Holmes in a mining camp, and other delights.

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This audio version was narrated by Thomas Becker, whose performance made the I loathed the jumping frog and couldn't relate to Tom Sawyer in high school, but 30 years ago after a week spent in bed with the flu and Mark Twain's Complete Short Stories, I was totally won over and ready to read anything he'd ever written. This audio version was narrated by Thomas Becker, whose performance made the story come alive, though giving John Wayne's voice to the sheriff was perhaps a little over the top Quite enjoyed reading this funny side of Mark Twain depicting one of my all-time favorite literary characters - Sherlock Holmes.

The story wasn't surprising or mysterious in the way detective stories are supposed to be but that wasn't really the point of it. I can say that it was funny and comical, seeing Sherlock Holmes in this perspective. Twain, nor from Sherlock as well. The complimentary one's too much predictable as hell.

May 14, Jason rated it liked it Recommends it for: Twain completists. Shelves: , humor , mark-twain. I read this while at work. Much of my summer is spent scanning documents, and sometimes the scanner will run for 2 or 3 minutes leaving me with nothing to do but stand around with my thumb up my ass OK, this is making no sense. Point is that I sometimes have up to 2 or 3 minutes of downtime between periods of productivity, and I read books or stories I find on www.

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Staring attentively at words on the computer screen is less likely to earn a scowl from a superior than If I'm lucky enough for my files to be riddled with staples, then I can spend time pulling those out while the scanner is running, but such is not always in my cards. Some of the files are too clean, and all I need to do is put them in the scanner and wait. Let me repeat that I read this while at work, so I was unable to give it my undivided attention reading 2 or 3 paragraphs at a time over the course of a couple of days.

I try to pick stories that don't require a lot of thought when doing that, and this was one of them. As short as this is, I should've been able to read it in under and hour even as slow as I read. If I didn't know this was Mark Twain before going into it, I never would've guessed it, for it isn't written in his accustomed style, not that I'm an authority on what his style is. It just didn't feel very Twainesque. Perhaps I spend too much time reading his quotes, and not his stories; that may be a factor here.


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  • Though, I did see a few instances of his wit shining through. I've read everything written about him by Doyle, and vowed not to read any stories about Holmes not written by the original author, but it looks like I've failed and to great personal cost to my soul and emotional well-being. It turns out Holmes is actually a humbug who always solves the crime because he was the one that set it up in the first place, and got some poor sap to pull it off. Oh, that I had never discovered this failing in one of my literary heroes. I don't think I'll be able to sleep tonight, and not because I'm jacked up on caffeine.

    It's been a couple of years since I read that, so my memory is fuzzy, but I saw a lot of similarities, so this might be poking fun at that one directly. I have no idea how Doyle felt about it all.

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    He hated Holmes, himself, because he wanted to focus on more serious writing, so he might have been pleased that Twain took the time to lampoon the great detective. However, Holmes was Doyle's meat and potatoes regardless of his feelings about him, so who knows? However, it's tastefully done, at least by today's standards, and isn't as outrageous as Christopher Moore's stuff which I can't get into because it's too far out there for my own personal tastes. Something I liked about the tale was the theme of revenge.

    I like that theme, mostly because it almost always causes as much trouble for the one seeking the revenge as it does for the one on whom it's sought; it tends to keep a story interesting.

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    Such is the case in both of the revenge plots in this tale. And always remember that revenge is a dish best served cold. It's a Klingon proverb. Most people think it's from Shakespeare, and they'd be right too. Shakespeare was a Klingon, so everyone can be happy and let go of that debate.

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    If you're looking for something light to read, this will fit that bill, but it's certainly not Twain's best work, short or otherwise.