The experience of collaboration will prove traumatic for both Fletcher Robinson and Conan Doyle. And when the result of their labours, The Hound of the Baskervilles, is finally published, it will be credited to one author alone.
Based on real events, The Baskerville Legacy is a creeper in its own right: a thrilling, frequently terrifying exploration of friendship and rivalry, love and lust, ambition and the limits of talent.
It provides a glimpse of the chilling Edwardian taste for spiritualism and the occult.
It takes us from the clattering heart of Edwardian London to the eerie stillness of ancient West Country moorland, where a treacherous mire might swallow a man in seconds -
- Format: Hardback
- Pages: 172 pages
- Publisher: Short Books Ltd
- Publication Date: 01/09/2011
- Category: Historical fiction
- ISBN: 9781907595462
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Review by Michael.Rimmer
I like to get something Holmesian each Christmas, and this was 2011's offering.<br/><br/>Being a fictionalised account of the collaboration between Arthur Conan Doyle and Bertram Fletcher Robinson on <b>The Hound of the Baskervilles</b>, I did wonder as I read through quite how much was real and how much fiction. Fortunately, O'Connell provides an Afterword in which all is clarified.<br/><br/>So, an interesting book, which gets better in its second half, when Doyle and Robinson are scouting locations for <i>The Hound</i> in Dartmoor, Robinson's childhood home, and when the creative and personal tensions between them start to surface.<br/><br/>I liked the section dealing with Doyle's (lamentable) dabbling in Spiritualism, and his gullibility and self-deceit as presented in this book seems to be true to the accounts I've read in a couple of biographies.<br/><br/>O'Connell has made Robinson into an interestingly flawed character, which he states in the Afterword is probably far from the truth, but which carries the story forward.<br/><br/>A relatively quick read in a nicely bound volume.