“I approached this book thinking I knew every story in it. I was wrong, there are a lot of Holmes stories! While it is undoubtedly true that some of them are worthy classics in the suspense telling genre, and the two main characters have rightfully become the stuff of legend, it is equally true that not all of them are up to scratch. "The crawling man" in particular hinges on a "fact" that is so contrary to what Sherlock Holmes is all about that the tale degrades into sub-par science fiction.
A couple of things are repeated throughout the whole canon which can be offsetting to the modern reader, I am alluding to the obvious racism (rearing its ugly head whenever people of non-western origin is introduced), male chauvinism (women are almost always weak, vulnerable and in need of male guidance) and the general condescending tone when describing "the lower classes". Although a fair assessment has to take in consideration that these tales of suspension was written more than a century ago, it can get rather grating.
With the above caveats duly noted this is still gripping stuff and much of its charm remains intact. The world building and odd couple partnership of Holmes and Watson that Doyle excels in is a pleasure to behold and sometimes outshines the actual criminal plots of the novel in my opinion. ”
mattiazinfo wrote this review Saturday, March 20, 2010.