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  • Published: 1 September 2010
  • ISBN: 9781409086284
  • Imprint: Vintage Digital
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 160

A Study in Scarlet




The first of Sherlock Holmes's adventures

WITH AN INTRODUCTION BY MARK BILLINGHAM

When Dr Watson ends up renting rooms in Baker Street with the eccentric Sherlock Holmes he finds that he has let himself in for a great deal more than he imagined. He is called upon to help the budding detective solve a perplexing mystery, involving a dead body found in a locked room. Although the body shows no signs of having been attacked Holmes is convinced that a murder has been committed. As Watson looks on, he uses his exceptional powers of deduction to unravel a case that involves both kidnapping and thwarted love.

  • Published: 1 September 2010
  • ISBN: 9781409086284
  • Imprint: Vintage Digital
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 160

About the author

Arthur Conan Doyle

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle was born on 22 May 1859 in Edinburgh. He studied medicine at the University of Edinburgh and began to write stories while he was a student.Over his life he produced more than thirty books, 150 short stories, poems, plays and essays across a wide range of genres. His most famous creation is the detective Sherlock Holmes, who he introduced in his first novel A Study in Scarlet (1887). This was followed in 1889 by an historical novel, Micah Clarke. In 1893 Conan Doyle published 'The Final Problem' in which he killed off his famous detective so that he could turn his attention more towards historical fiction. However Holmes was so popular that Conan Doyle eventually relented and published The Hound of the Baskervilles in 1901. The events of the The Hound of the Baskervilles are set before those of 'The Final Problem' but in 1903 new Sherlock Holmes stories began to appear that revealed that the detective had not died after all. He was finally retired in 1927. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle died on 7 July 1930.

Arthur Conan Doyle was born on 22 May 1859 in Edinburgh into a prosperous Irish family. He trained as a doctor, gaining his degree from Edinburgh University in 1881. He worked as a surgeon on a whaling boat and also as a medical officer on a steamer travelling between Liverpool and West Africa. He then settled in Portsmouth on the English south coast and divided his time between medicine and writing.

Sherlock Holmes made his first appearance in A Study of Scarlet, published in 'Beeton's Christmas Annual' in 1887. Its success encouraged Conan Doyle to write more stories involving Holmes but, in 1893, Conan Doyle killed off Holmes, hoping to concentrate on more serious writing. A public outcry later made him resurrect Holmes. In addition, Conan Doyle wrote a number of other novels, including The Lost World and various non-fictional works. These included a pamphlet justifying Britain's involvement in the Boer War, for which he was knighted and histories of the Boer War and World War One, in which his son, brother and two of his nephews were killed. Conan Doyle also twice ran unsuccessfully for parliament. In later life he became very interested in spiritualism.

Conan Doyle died of a heart attack on 7 July 1930.

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Praise for A Study in Scarlet

Arthur Conan Doyle is unique in simultaneously bringing the curtain down on an era and raising one on another, ushering in a genre of writing that, while imitated and expanded, has never been surpassed

Stephen Fry

I first encountered him through an eccentric maths teacher who would read 'The Speckled Band' and other Conan Doyle adventures to us instead of teaching fractions. He also used to balance chairs on his chin, but that's another story. I'm still fond of Holmes to this day, especially now that I can see him as the crazed, controlling junkie that he clearly was

Mark Billingham

A wonderful Sherlock Holmes story from its sparkling first pages, through its vivid painting of darkest Dartmoor, its undertones of fear of the mind's depths, and on to the triumph of the rational

The Times

Holmes is probably the only literary creation since the creations of Dickens which has really passed into the life and language of the people

G. K. Chesterton

A Victorian whodunnit of brooding power

Guardian

One of his best works

Contemporary Review

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