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The Hound of the Baskervilles - A Review

January 19, 2021

The Hound of the Baskervilles is widely acclaimed to be one of the best, if not the best Sherlock Holmes story ever written. It has been said to be one of the best detective stories ever published. After hearing such lofty praise, I checked it out, pulled up the Audible version on my phone, and cracked open the cover of my text version. This review will be split up into multiple sections by the way, for convenience of course. 

Basic Review
Underwhelming. I've read multiple Sherlock Holmes stories and I can't see how this story is any different than the others. Each of those stories had some exciting landscape or unique origin story. One of my favorites gave a huge backstory of the villain while simultaneously unveiling a desert landscape and a great pilgrimage. The villain has to escape the pilgrims that saved his life while he was in the desert and then killed his loved one.  The villain swears revenge. 

In "the Hound of the Baskervilles" the setting was just disgusting smoggy 1800's London, and disgusting swampy 1800's English countryside. The villain's backstory was okay, the big surprise was that he used to be a school teacher. Wooooooo, evil school teacher...don't let him get to close Sherlock, he might fail you...woooooooo...
One part of the story that was interesting was Sherlock was seriously concerned that "the Hound of the Baskervilles" was supernatural, and his common sense and superstition fought for control of his decision. There was a pretty scary twist at the end but this is the basic review, which means no spoilers!

Characters (Spoilers)
  • Sherlock: You know, for a Sherlock Holmes book, this had very little Sherlock in it! For half the book he isn't even in the main setting! Like what the heck! It was like Iron Man 3, that had almost no Iron Man in it! Other than that, you can't say a lot about Sherlock, he's just as smart as he ever was and solves stuff in no time.
  • Watson: Watson is tasked with travelling to the mysterious Baskerville hall and sending letters back to Sherlock about what happens there and most of the story is from his point of view. He's also the same as ever, the sense of reason in the story.
  • Stapleton: Stapleton is the primary antagonist of the story and he's pretty interesting. He seems to be a psycho path and craves the Baskerville estate. He himself is a Baskerville through distant relations and sets off murdering the Baskerville family heirs to get the estate. He is an interesting antagonist, even if he is revealed to be the villain too early in my opinion and his backstory is pretty lame. He's smart enough to harness the local people's fear of a mystical dog and use it to make his murders seem supernatural.
  • Sir Henry Baskerville: There's not much to say about Henry. He's the owner of the Baskerville estate and he's the target of Stapleton's next murder. He's fair-headed and polite, and he likes Stapleton's sister.

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