Paul Stuart Hayes

Sherlock Holmes (not to mention the other works penned by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle) has been with me from a very early age, my father being responsible for introducing me to the great detective. As a result, it seemed perfectly logical that when I first tried my hand at writing, I would turn to Conan Doyle’s greatest creation. ‘Requiem for Sherlock Holmes’ was written over a five year period, and was researched in great detail to ensure that it captured the world and characters of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle in an authentic fashion. It is now available in various formats from Lulu and Amazon sites around the world.

Sherlock Holmes and the Lyme Regis Horror - David Ruffle

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.

Requiem for Sherlock Holmes: A Review

A review of Requiem for Sherlock Holmes by Paul Stuart Hayes


Sherlock Holmes in The Adventure of The Magic Umbrella

Sherlock Holmes in the Adventure of the Magic Umbrella - Dan Andriacco I really enjoyed this short story. Ever since I read Conan Doyle's 'The Problem with Thor Bridge', in which this case was originally referred to I always wondered how this story would have played out if Sir Arthur ever had a stab at writing it. How a man can simply disappear by entering his house to collect his umbrella has fascinated me for a long time and along with the giant rat of Sumatra, it is one of the best known of Sherlock Holmes' unwritten cases.
Here Dan Andriacco (a brilliant name for an author) attempts to put this case to paper and does a brilliant job in the process. He mirrors Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's writing style perfectly with the characters and the final outcome fitting in with the canon seamlessly.
I will definitely be seeking out more works from this author.

You and Who: Contact Has Been Made!: 1

You and Who: Contact Has Been Made - Volume One - J.R. Southall, Si Hunt, Wayne W. Whited, Anthony Zehetner, Steve Herbert, Grant Foxon, Paul Stuart Hayes, Anthony Townsend, Kate Du-Rose, Jo West, Tom Henry, Antony Wainer, James Gent, David O'Brien, Andrew Orton, Andrew Hickey, Michael Seely, Sam Hemming, Kevin Jon Davies You and Who: Contact Has Been Made is a collection of short essays made by fans of Doctor Who, with each essay covering a particular story in the show's long history. Whilst the writers are spread all over the globe and of varying ages, one common theme occurs on a regular basis - how a chance glimpse of a television show (invaryingly in their youth) eventually led to a life-long love for the programme (and for some a better or happier life).
This edition covers all of the stories in the recently dubbed 'classic' era, from it's inception in 1963 to its eventual demise in 1989. The TV movie and the new series are covered in volume two.
The book will be of interest to casual viewers (who have an interest in TV history) and hardened fans alike.

Watson's Finances

Watson's Finances - Cress Roylott A Sherlock Holmes / Dr Watson story which explains how the good doctor was able to support himself financially whilst accompanying Holmes on his adventures.
Unfortunately the story is far too short, with it being under 900 words. The story would definitely benefit if it were to be expanded and this section merely added at the start of another story (minus the crude end piece which does not fit the tone of what preceeded it).

Ripper's Row

Ripper's Row - Donnie Light,  Shawn Weaver I have a strong interest in Jack the Ripper but have little to no interest in Vampires (apart from the original Bram Stoker novel and the Hammer Horror films) so I didn't think this book would interest me but hey, it was free on Amazon (at the time), so I thought I'd give it a try. It turned out to be a very good decision as any doubts I had had were soon dispelled as I began reading, I found it to be a very entertaining read. I will definitely be seeking out the sequel 'Ripper's Revenge'.


Valhalla - Anthony Beer A good pastiche, but I would have liked it to have been a bit longer.

The Case Of The Invisible Man

The Case Of The Invisible Man - Ray Daley An interesting short story, well written and with a clever twist in the tail. Will definitely seek out more stuff by this author.
Eliminate the Impossible - Alistair Duncan Eliminate the Impossible is a very enjoyable book, and a well-researched one at that. It offers a wealth of information that would interest both novices and well-versed Sherlockians alike.
As the author mentions in the book, it is better if the original books are read first, but only a passing knowledge is really needed (you could probably even get by if you’ve watched the Jeremy Brett television adaptations).
I feel it is the perfect companion to Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes stories.
Doctor Who - The Wheel of Ice - Stephen Baxter I really enjoyed this book. It captured the feel of a classic Troughton story perfectly, so much so that on occassion it felt like I was reading a missing story from Pat's tenure.
The Mystery of Marie Rogêt - Edgar Allan Poe Fails to live up to Murders in the Rue Morgue.

Dangerous Work: Diary of an Arctic Adventure

Dangerous Work: Diary of an Arctic Adventure -  Arthur Conan Doyle When this book was published I did not hold out much hope for it, as I had already been burned by the disappointing release ‘The Diary of John Smith’ and thought that the sudden outpouring of posthumous publications related to Conan Doyle could end up tarnishing his great reputation.
Fortunately my early fears could not have been further from the truth. It is a marvellous book, which not only details a long forgotten trade and the brave men who toiled at it, but gives insights into the young doctor’s life at a point when he was deeply entrenched in his medical studies and his future calling as an author was just a pipe dream to him.
It begs the question, why wasn’t this book published earlier?
The Boddy in the Snowbank - Jenna Bennett Whilst this was a very short story, (I started reading it while I was making a cup of coffee and managed to get halfway through in the time it took my kettle to boil) it was a very entertaining tale nonetheless. Hopefully if the makers of Cluedo ever find out about it, they'll have a sense of humour and see that it isn't doing them any harm.
Sherlock Holmes Investigates. The Pink Jewel Conundrum - Philip van Wulven As others have already said, the story starts off well and with some promise but this is dashed by the poorly thought out solution to the problem.
True History of the Blackadder: The Unadulterated Tale of the Creation of a Comedy Legend: The Unadulterated History of the Creation of a Comedy Legend - J. F. Roberts A great book for a great series. A very well researched piece (bordering on obsessive), with a wealth of information that even the most knowledgable fan of the show should find something new on reading it. If you have an interest in Blackadder then this book is a must.
The Narrative of John Smith - Jon Lellenberg,  Arthur Conan Doyle This edition is all that remains of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's first attempt at writing a novel; the complete manuscript being lost in the post, en route to the publishers. Having no other copy (these were the days before backup hard drives and printers of course), he resolved to re-write the novel from scratch. Which he in part did, completing the first five chapters before abandoning the project on the sixth.
In this novel, Doyle strongly adheres to the axiom “write what you know”. In what seems more akin to a biographical piece, he gives us his thoughts (albeit via the fictional character John Smith) on a wide range of subjects - be it medical, art, literature, religion or war.
The medical bits seemed a bit too bogged down in detail for my liking (but that is no doubt down to my ignorance on the subject and nothing less), but the rest was easy to follow. The conversations held between the main character, John Smith and the old campaigner who lived upstairs, proved to be a highlight for me.
Instead of completing a novel that he knew wasn’t working, Doyle instead chose to let the parts he liked slowly filter into his subsequent stories (something that Douglas Adams would come to do with his own unpublished material, nigh on a century later), with the novel ‘The Stark Munro Letters’ and the short stories that made up ‘Round The Red Lamp’ benefiting most.
Unfortunately the most damning verdict I can give on this novel is that it cut off suddenly mid-point and I did not mind in the least. If that had occurred with any of Conan Doyle's other novels, it would surely have affected me a lot more.