A Study in Scarlet is the first detective mystery novel written by Conan Doyle to feature Sherlock Holmes, who is now the most famous literary detective. But back then, he barely garnered any interest. Conan Doyle wrote the novel at the age of 27 in less than three weeks. Although Conan Doyle wrote 56 short stories featuring Holmes, A Study in Scarlet is one of only four full-length novels in the original canon. To get an idea of how influential the Sherlock Holmes’ stories and novels became, A Study in Scarlet was the first work of fiction to incorporate the magnifying glass as an investigative tool.
The book's title derives from a speech given by Holmes to his companion Doctor Watson on the nature of his work, in which he describes the story's murder investigation as his "study in scarlet": "There’s the scarlet thread of murder running through the colourless skein of life, and our duty is to unravel it, and isolate it, and expose every inch of it."
The second Sherlock Holmes novel written by Conan Doyle was The Sign of the Four (1890), also called The Sign of Four. Set in 1887, The Sign of the Four has a complex plot involving service in East India Company, the Indian Rebellion of 1857, a stolen treasure, and a secret pact among four convicts ("the Four" of the title) and two corrupt prison guards. It presents the detective's drug habit and humanizes. It also introduces Doctor Watson's future wife, Mary Morstan.
In December 1893, in order to dedicate more of his time to more "important" works—his historical novels— Conan Doyle had Holmes and Professor Moriarty apparently plunge to their deaths together down the Reichenbach Falls in the story "The Final Problem.” The public was having none of it, however, and there was an outpouring of support for bringing Sherlock Holmes back, leading Conan Doyle to write a new story in 1901, The Hound of the Baskervilles.
One of the most famous and popular Sherlock Holmes stories, The Hound of the Baskervilles is the third of four crime novels about the famous detective written by Conan Doyle, and it tells the story of an attempted murder inspired by the legend of a fearsome, diabolical hound.
The Valley of Fear is the final Sherlock Holmes novel written by Conan Doyle, first published in the Strand Magazine between September 1914 and May 1915. The first book edition was published in New York on 27 February 1915. Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson receive a letter from an informant who is known by the pseudonym Fred Porlock. The letter is written in a numeric code, and Holmes realizes that the numbers refer to words in a book , by page and column, and the detectives set out to find out what the code says.
This edition of Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes Novels is specially formatted with a Table of Contents and includes images of Conan Doyle, Sherlock Holmes, and scenes from the novels.
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About the Author
A prolific author of books, short stories, poetry, and more, the Scottish writer Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (1859-1930) is best known for the creation of one of literature’s most vivid and enduring characters: Sherlock Holmes. Through detailed observation, vast knowledge, and brilliant deduction, Holmes and his trusted friend, Dr. Watson, step into the swirling fog of Victorian London to rescue the innocent, confound the guilty, and solve the most perplexing puzzles known to literature.
Date of Birth:May 22, 1859
Date of Death:July 7, 1930
Place of Birth:Edinburgh, Scotland
Place of Death:Crowborough, Sussex, England
Education:Edinburgh University, B.M., 1881; M.D., 1885