The Devil and Sherlock Holmes

The Devil and Sherlock Holmes

Tales of Murder, Madness, and Obsession

Book - 2010
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Collection of the journalist's articles previously published in varous periodicals. Whether he's reporting on the infiltration of the murderous Aryan Brotherhood into the U.S. prison system, tracking down a con artist in Europe, or riding with a scientist hunting the elusive giant squid, David Grann revels in telling stories that explore the nature of obsession. Each of the stories in this collection reveals a hidden and often dangerous world, pivoting around the gravitational pull of obsession and the captivating personalities of those caught in its grip. There is the world's foremost expert on Sherlock Holmes, found dead in mysterious circumstances; an arson sleuth trying to prove that a man about to be executed is innocent; and sandhogs racing to complete the dangerous job of building New York City's water tunnels before the old system collapses. Throughout, Grann's accounts display the power--and often the willful perversity--of the human spirit, a mosaic of ambition, madness, passion, and folly.--From publisher description.
Publisher: New York : Doubleday, 2010
Edition: 1st ed
Description: xi, 338 p. ; 25 cm
ISBN: 9780385517928
0385517920
Branch Call Number: 364.1523 Gra

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SPPL_János Mar 15, 2018

This collection of articles, mostly for "The New Yorker", are tied together only by a theme of obsession and David Grann's nose for incredible stories. The mysterious strangulation of a Sherlock Holmes scholar, an amnesiac firefighter haunted by whether heroism or cowardice led to his survival at the World Trade Center, a murder in Poland whose only clue is a disturbing postmodern novel, a marine biologist hunting for giant squid larvae, a con artist who just wants to be loved, and several more tales are expertly told.

b
BlueHippo
Jun 21, 2017

I really enjoyed this book. IT's a great summer read because it's a collection of shorter, independent articles. While the overall theme is crime, the stories range from tales of deeds by individuals to tales of gangs and brotherhoods. I found some more interesting than others, but that's to be expected in any compilation. Each was wonderfully written though, and taken together, it makes for a great book!

corybant May 05, 2011

Each short story takes on a life of as it own as the people become obsessed with something in their lives or trapped by it. I will admit that I felt the first story was a bit slow, but the stories evolve even though the characters are propelled not by choice but compulsion.

It is an incredible compilation of true stories on subjects like Sherlock Holmes, fire forensics, architeuthis, and 9/11.

I listened to this as an audiobook on long car trips back and forth between Canada. It is perfect for listening to.

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