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Book Note: Arthur Conan Doyle, Memories and Adventures

I read this book about 7-Dec-2022. This is the first time I've read this book. The book is copyright 1924. This note was last modified Sunday, 11-Dec-2022 16:13:30 PST.

This note does not contain major spoilers for the book.


While I cite an ISBN for a modern edition of this book, the easiest and cheapest way to get it is from Project Gutenberg.

The autobiogaphy of the inventor of Sherlock Holmes. I do wonder sometimes what he would think of Watson as a "sober companion", or of Holmes having a sister as well as a brother. Not that this book will help with either of those.

Doyle was from Holmes' era (or, really, the other way around), and lots of other things from that period are still in print and frequently read by serious readers. He overlaps Heinlein (if not his writing career), and Dorothy Sayers.

Doyle came from a family background that seems rather poor to a modern reader; but he got a good education and qualified as a doctor, and was acquainted with a large proportion of the big names in society. He writes in the book about many non-fiction projects, and efforts he took to influence politics (even running for office, and coming dangerously close to winning the first time). He was able to volunteer his time as a doctor in a field hospital for the second Boer war.

Still, his last medical offices were unsullied by any patient for the 6 months or so he had them, until he turned to writing full-time. He was able to write a lot when not bothered by patients!

Sadly, what he thinks was really important about his life and work places The White Company above Sherlock Holmes, and his work on spiritualism and telepathy above any of that. (Heinlein and Sayers were also vastly too caught up in mysticism for my comfort.)


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David Dyer-Bennet