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Summary

It is the autumn of 1880, and Dr. John Watson has just returned from Afghanistan. Badly injured and desperate to forget a nightmarish expedition that left him doubting his sanity, Watson is close to destitution when he meets the extraordinary Sherlock Holmes, who is investigating a series of deaths in the Shadwell district of London. Several bodies have been found, the victims appearing to have starved to death over the course of several weeks, and yet they were reported alive and well mere days before. Moreover, there are disturbing reports of creeping shadows that inspire dread in any who stray too close. 

Holmes deduces a connection between the deaths and a sinister drug lord who is seeking to expand his criminal empire. Yet both he and Watson are soon forced to accept that there are forces at work far more powerful than they could ever have imagined. Forces that can be summoned, if one is brave - or mad - enough to dare …

©2016 James Lovegrove (P)2019 Blackstone Publishing

What listeners say about The Cthulhu Casebooks: Sherlock Holmes and the Shadwell Shadows

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

An enjoyable book

It was a nice and enjoyable mash up of two memorable story lines, just don't take it too seriously and its fun! Plus the narrator was a rather strong point, didn't feel bored listening through it and each character was easily distinct.

4 people found this helpful

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A Decent Start

I would say that, overall, it was a rather decent attempt at combining two much beloved works of literature. If you're a big fan of Sherlock and the Cthulu mythos then I'd say it's worth a listen, but be a bit open minded, characters won't act entirely like you'd expect or might even come away as a bad adaption. That said, the writing style is a good mimicry of Conan Doyle's and the integration of Lovecraft's cosmic horror doesn't feel heavy handed, although it does lack that inherent sense of dread you get with the original works. So in summation, a decent start. Interesting and not quite what I'd expected but made me want to get started on the next installment.

3 people found this helpful

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A lot of fun.

Generally speaking I really like this book. But you must take it I think comes. It is not a great literary work, it is a lot of fun and an enjoyable read.

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A good start and an enjoyable romp

A good book. A bit lightweight for a Cthulhu/Holmes mash up but perhaps more enjoyable for it (imagine Spielberg directing a Cthulhu/Holmes mashup film). It's not written like either Doyle or Lovecraft (the language is slightly 'off') and it is easy to find this distracting at the outset but take it for what it is and its a good book. The reader is good but he does have the habit of misprouncing a few words which, while not in every day language aren't particularly unusual so I am surprised it wasn't directed better: I would say 'a little imprecise at times' rather than 'sloppy'. The foreward from the author would have been better ommitted because he comes across as conceited and arrogant. Overall an enjoyable romp which owes something to Connan-Doyle, Lovecraft and Spielberg.

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    1 out of 5 stars

Promising start, then down hill.

Really had to force myself to listen through the silly bits. I'm afraid that kind of fiction is not for me and was a huge turn off for a big Holmes fan.

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  • Gustaf H
  • 23-01-20

Bad fanfiction.

This is nothing but a bad attemt at imitatating the style of the original Sherlock Holmes storys, and mixing them badly with Lovecraftian lore. Watson is made to look like a dimwitted brute in this and Sherlock is significantly dumber and slower than in the original stories. The auothor of this tries to write in Doyls style but fails. The story is rushed, Sherlock and Watson have just met yet they act like they are old friends, this storty would have benefited from not twisting the original stories and throwing them aside, instead a independent story should have been written, taking place in the gaps of the original stories, perhaps related to the happenings in them or after, playing of small details of the otiginal stories - perhaps there was a real demon hound in the baskerville case? perhaps it wans't the KKK but instead the Cthulhu cult? As it stands I think better things could come from a Sherlock/Lovecraft mix. The narrator isn't that good either, hit and miss when it comes to capturing the characters mood and personality.

32 people found this helpful

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  • CR
  • 02-06-20

I could not finish this book

The idea of this is intriguing and seems like a perfect fit for people who are fans of both Holmes and Lovecraft. Unfortunately, reality does not match expectation. The writing style is good and the author obviously talented, but the story falls down almost immediately. Maybe the the problem is that the genres are simply too different and attempting to combine them means that you get something that feels like neither. Personally, I felt like the way the official Holmes canon was handled as basically a giant lie set things off with a strangely sour note from the beginning and it just doesn't get better from there. Unfortunately, after a certain point, I simply could not continue.

16 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 25-11-19

Sherlock and Space Gods

James Lovegrove is a fantastic writer after reading his Godpunk series I had to jump on this bandwagon Dennis Kleinman is a great narrator the story does start off a bit slow bringing you up to speed in the Sherlock history but once it gets into the Eldritch you can't help but wonder what will happen next if you like Sherlock Holmes dealing with the being from HP Lovecraft mind you are in for a treat

8 people found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • Kevin
  • 16-01-20

Wow. What an awful book.

The beauty of Sherlock Holmes novels is that Sherlock takes the easily observed phenomena we see every day and makes accurate inferences and deductions. This book kills that image of Holmes. Basically, after going on an acid trip, Holmes’ eyes are opened to the real nature of the universe. His previous seductive techniques are useless. The rest of the novel he is just applying alchemy to bullets, etc, to defeat monsters. Not a Sherlock book. Big waste of time.

24 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Dr. Mc.
  • 27-08-20

Predictable plot, filled with anachronisms

Unlike Matt Ruff's "Lovecraft Country," the plot of this book is completely predictable after you get about halfway through. Also, the author doesn't even seem to try to avoid anachronisms. Phrases like "mission accomplished" and "put on your thinking cap Watson" abound.

6 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Michael
  • 03-07-20

It Was Ok

I'm a fan of Sherlock and have heard/read all of the original ones and thought this would be a nice twist to the stories. That being said I didn't care for the way this story Retcon's the original stories. I would have perfered this as a whole new untold story, with new enemies that blended in with the original. But that is only my opinion and I'm glad I did listen to the whole thing but I wouldn't give it a re-listen.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Brody Morris
  • 22-07-20

A fantastic departure of the classic

I think this book encapsulates the very stuff of creativity I crave more than anything else, the regular turned supernatural. Take a familiar classic and bend the rules to create something new and all together ELDRITCH, as it were. If you wanted Sherlock bathed in weird fiction, this undoubtedly serves it up in a manner that, to me at least, is fine dining at the core.

4 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • joshua
  • 22-07-20

Enjoyable

Short and fun story with writing that mirrors both authors that it's based on.

4 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 06-01-20

Great Read

I very much enjoyed this book. It was Imaginative , Tightly written, A worthwhile read.

3 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Stefan Filipovits
  • 21-11-19

It’s not Kim Newman or Neil Gaiman...but it is undeniably fun.

Anyone who’s ever read my reviews in the past knows that when it comes to crossover fiction I think Kim Newman is the gold standard. It’s because of him that I even know what “crossover fiction” or “character mash-ups” are. It’s because of this admiration for Newman’s work that I have an insatiable appetite for any stories even remotely like it. Theodora Goss’s Athena Club Series (good), Neil Gaiman’s A Study in Emerald (better), and Kim Newman’s Anno Dracula Series and Professor Moriarty: The Hound of the D’urbervilles (best) still remain the holy trinity of the genre in my humble opinion. And while neither of the previously mentioned books are in any danger of being replaced by Lovegrove’s Holmes/Cthulhu monster-mash, I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t fun. As a Holmes pastiche it’s pretty good. He’s nailed the tropes, characters, and literary style. Non-canon Holmes stories often seem like they can only be dry, tedious and dull or silly, non-sensical, and absurd (Looking at you Sherlock Holmes and the Servents Of Hell. The Sherlock Holmes/Hellraiser crossover.). Lovegrove strikes a good balance. It’s a good mix between cold clinical detective work and supernatural horror and he articulates Lovecraft’s existential dread rather well. It’s also a rather fast-paced book, it weaves familiar characters and nods to both the Holmes canon and the Cthulhu Mythos as well as can be expected without seeming clunky or inauthentic. While I wouldn’t put Lovegrove on the Mount Rushmore of crossover fiction authors I can honestly say that this was a fun pastiche and I look forward to the sequels.

21 people found this helpful