05 September 2014

Review: The Sign of Four by Arthur Conan Doyle

Trade paperback, 129 pages
Published 2001 (originally 1890)
Acquired July 2014
Read August 2014
The Sign of Four
by Arthur Conan Doyle

Though it has its inescapably Sherlockian moments (the Baker Street Irregulars, Holmes's various disguises, and so on), this is definitely duller than most of the short stories I've read, nor is it even as strong as A Study in Scarlet. Doyle will go on to perfect the formula, but he's not quite there yet, and the "romance" feels completely tacked on. I hate those chapters which are just characters explaining backstory to each other.


  1. I disagree, I quite liked the backstories to each of the characters. You are right that the romance is out of place and the story would do better without it.
    Really though, you found it dull!

    1. Really! (I mean, I think so; it's been over three years now.) I haven't read BASKERVILLES yet so my opinion may change, but thus far I find the Holmes shorts vastly superior to the novels.