Monday, 23 February 2015

Book Review: The Lighter Side of Sherlock Holmes

Are you depressed? Are you missing Sherlock Holmes? Are you pining for an adventure? MX has the perfect cure for you: The Lighter Side of Sherlock Holmes - a fantastic collection of Sherlockian art that will leave you in stitches!
 
Oh yes, it is that good. And very, very clever.
 
I had the pleasure of meeting Mr Glenn Schatell in New York last month at the BSI Cocktail Reception. Glenn showed me his book - a compilation of Sherlock Holmes cartoons by his father, Mr Norman Schatell. Now, regular readers of the Baker Street Journal, the Sherlock Holmes Journal, the Serpentine Muse and several other Sherlockian publications would no doubt be already familiar with the works of Mr Schatell...but for those who are not, Glenn has painstakingly compiled this utterly delightful treat. I say "treat" because there is something in it for each and every Sherlockian/Holmesian - no matter your age, temperament or style of humour!
 
The cover itself is a fantastic prelude to the humour that runs through the book:
 
 
 
I have spent many hours in the last few weeks giggling in the back of a cab after long (and often tiresome) workdays over the Kindle version of "The Lighter Side of Sherlock Holmes", which I bought as soon as I was back in India. I am sure my sanity was questioned - but who cares, it was too good to resist! The hardcopy turned up a couple of days back - even better! Just look at these:
 


 
 
Humour aside, the cartoons are also diabolically clever. Many, many times I would look at one, smile and come back to it after a few more pages - only to reach for the canon to figure out a reference (Google, too, at times). And when I figured out some all by myself...ah, well - it's a matter of great pride, ain't it? There are very few things in life better than clever humour. Here's the proof:
 


 


Almost three hundred pages of sheer delight! What more could a Sherlockian possibly want? This is an absolute "must-have" book for all of us. Let's end with my favourite: