Chapter 115 – the rant

1 04 2009

Tom is pretty hardcore.

Anyone who throws a sai and keeps a dagger in hand clearly doesn’t have much common sense, but the crazy guy is fond of that dagger.  He’s also a nasty piece of work, but I suspect that was obvious.

I think it’s important that Tom has found an ally, at least for now.  This week he’s been subjected to far too much trauma for one person.


I’ve been reading a lot of Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes mysteries of late.  I think I’m addicted.

I’m hopeless at figuring out who the culprit was, but then Sherlock Holmes stories aren’t really that kind of mystery, anyway.  And I did manage to work out three of them correctly: The Hound of the Baskervilles, The Empty House and The Norwood Builder.  Also, I guessed which organisation was responsible for The Five Orange Pips long before Holmes (an evil organisation from the southern United States with the initials K.K.K.  Hmm, I wonder who that could be…), although I think I had the advantage of historical hindsight.

I really admire mystery authors.  I think there’s a specific type of intelligence that’s required to write a good mystery story.  You need to not only plan everything out beforehand, but also provide enough clues that the reader can work it out, and present them in such a way that it won’t be too obvious.

I was also glad to note that the original Dr. Watson is a lot cooler and more believable than the bumbling incompetant that is so often depicted in popular culture.  I’m guessing that image is the result of derivative authors failing to make Holmes sufficiently smart, and compromising by making Watson stupid.  Poor Watson.




3 responses

1 04 2009

i love mysteries but i have yet to read a sherlock holmes! 😳 have you tried agatha christie? i’ve read almost all she’s written, they’re awesome.

2 04 2009

I don’t know what a sai is, but, wow, a shillelagh? Not a common weapon where I live! I’ll trust that you spelled it correctly, too. It does sound good that Tom has found a companion in his misery, which, I hope, is short lived. 😦
My local telly has been re-running the Sherlock series starring Jeremy Brett, from the 80’s. It’s dated because of the time it’s set, of course, but also because the series is 20 years old. It gives it a sort of ethereal quality. Have you seen them? Brett is my favorite on-screen Holmes, although he does go on at times. You are so right about Dr. Watson, and he does not entirely escape this treatment in this series, either.
Those are good ones you mentioned! 🙂 Did you figure out “The Speckled Band”?

2 04 2009

@ sulz: Well, I recommend you give the Sherlock Holmes stories a try; they’re pretty awesome, too. I started with A Study in Scarlet, which isn’t the best, but it’s a good starting point.

As far as Agatha Christie goes, I’ve only read And Then There Were None, which I enjoyed. If that’s typical of Christie, her writing style is quite different from Doyle’s, although they’re both very good.

@ museditions: A sai is like a large dagger with two prongs and a central shaft instead of a blade. Think Raphael from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

I realise the shillelagh was an unusual choice of weapon, but the guards in an earlier chapter were wielding a carving fork and a Winchester Model 1894 rifle, so they’re not conventionally equipped.

♫ There were snakes in Ireland, not many years ago / St. Patrick saw the vermin all a-crawling / But with his shillelagh he hit ’em on the head / And he drove them ‘cross the other side of Jordan! ♪

I haven’t seen that series you mentioned. I will have to keep an eye out for it. The Speckled Band had me utterly stumped! That one was creepy!

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