10 of 11 people found the following review helpful.
A large portion of this review consists of my comments from my review of Issue No.5 of the “Sherlock Holmes Mystery Magazine.” My complaint with that issue remains the same with this one: Stories by Carla Coupe, which have appeared in the last three issues, are simply rewrites of old 1940′s radio shows, and in two of those stories, no credit at all is given to the original authors, giving the reader the impression that Ms. Coupe is coming up with these stories on her own.
As I said in my previous review, I am always glad to find anything that contains traditional Sherlock Holmes pastiches, and this volume is no exception. I would encourage the editor to stop including non-Holmes material altogether, and just print original new Holmes and Watson adventures – as many as he can find – in every issue.
In this issue, Ms. Coupe’s contribution, “The Book of Tobit,” was actually originally written by Dennis Green and Anthony Boucher, and broadcast on radio on March 26, 1945, with Basil Rathbone as Holmes. In fact, this was the first script written jointly by Green and Boucher. In this issue, there is no credit given at all to either of the original authors, and there is no mention made that this was originally a radio story. The broadcast is readily available online, either for free or to purchase. The original script is online, for those who care to search for it. Also, the original script has already been rewritten into a short story, included in “The Forgotten Adventures of Sherlock Holmes” by H. Paul Jeffers. This is one of two collections of old Holmes radio broadcast scripts that have been converted into prose stories, both giving full credit to the original authors.
In Issue No.4, Ms. Coupe presented her first rewritten radio story, “The Elusive Emerald”, in which she did give loose credit to the original authors. Ms. Coupe’s contribution to Issue No.5 was “The Adventure of the Haunted Bagpipes”. This was the first time that she gave no credit to the actual original author of this work. In the case of “The Haunted Bagpipes,” Ms. Coupe took both the title and plot of the old radio show and simply rewrote it as prose under her own name. The original script of this story was written by Edith Meiser. It was first broadcast on October 29, 1936 with Richard Gordan as Holmes, and rebroadcast on February 17, 1947 with Tom Conway as Holmes. The Conway version is available for free download, or for sale from a number of vendors. “The Haunted Bagpipes” was also adapted from Meiser’s script as a comic by Frank Giacola – see “The Black Death” in Malibu’s “Sherlock Holmes: Book 1″ ISBN-13: 978-0944735152 – so the story is available in several forms other than Ms. Coupe’s latest version. Sometimes in her version, Ms. Coupe makes a character name change and even alters the end of the story, but there is no denying the original sources.
It would be fine if Ms. Coupe would just acknowledge what she was doing, rather than pretending by omission that this is original material, as created by Carla Coupe. As mentioned earlier, other old Holmes radio shows from the 1930′s and 1940′s have already been rewritten very well as prose and published in book form, both in “The Lost Adventures of Sherlock Holmes” by Ken Greenwald, and more recently in the previously mentioned “The Forgotten Adventures of Sherlock Holmes” by H. Paul Jeffers. At least those gentlemen had the honesty to show the true source of their tales.
As I said in my review for Issue No.5, it is my opinion that Ms. Coupe can go ahead and rewrite all of the remaining radio scripts that still remain untouched by Greenwald and Jeffers. She does a fine job. Mr. Kaye, please put her to work on it today. I’ll buy it as soon as she publishes it, as would many other Holmes fanatics. But at least have her state where she found her inspiration . . . .
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful.
(*) Introductory passages by ‘Dr. Watson’ and the editor Marvin Kaye [the absence of Mrs. Hudson was a relief actually].
1. “The Rare Mexican Sherlock Holmes Series” by Gary Lovisi: a brief piece that establishes how widespread the appeal of Sherlock Holmes is. We may expect the author to cast his net elsewhere as well, since it is a fact that the canon commands respect in even more exotic locale than Mexico.
2. “Remembering Edward D. Hoch and His Sherlock Holmes Stories” by Len Moffatt: for anybody who might like to pursue Hoch’s fiction concerning Dr. Sam Hawthorne: Diagnosis: Impossible : The Problems of Dr. Sam Hawthorne.
3. “Screen of the Crime: Baker Street on a Budget” by Lenny Picker: once again, the author has managed to pickle my interest (and hopefully others’ as well) about a new series that has so far not received attention that it deserves. A highly enjoyable read.
4. “The Autumn of Terror: Sherlock Holmes Investigates Jack the Ripper” by M. J. Elliott: Readers of Sherlock Holmes of Baker Street, the Life of the World’s First Consulting Detective. as well as countless others have always been vexed with the issue of the greatest fictional hero of Victorian London (and the world) pursuing the greatest contemporary villain. This article takes a look at some of the attempts that have been made on paper & screen to this effect. An informative piece, but for more on the same topic: [...]
1) “A Memo from Inspector Lestrade”: in place of Mrs. Hudson’s column, this surprisingly effective and well-told pastiche enlivens the magazine, after the somewhat rigorous non-fiction preceding it.
2) “The Curse of Bridges Falls” by William E. Chambers: a very good story, and I hope that Mr. Chambers would keep on gracing the pages of the subsequent volumes with such high-quality pastiches in future.
3) “Let Them Eat Cake” by Jean Paiva: Marvin Kaye keeps on printing this late author’s works, and keeps on dragging the quality of the magazine down again & again. How this “story” managed to become print-worthy is a mystery that should be keenly investigated, and the perpetrators suitably dealt with.
4) “The Little Blue Dog” by Marc Bilgrey: a juvenile piece of writing, but readable, and actually involves a mystery (childishly simple).
5) “The Bank Job” by Steve Hagood: another simple mystery, but readable.
6) “Silent Victim” (novel excerpt), by C.E. Lawrence: gives the game away in the “preface” itself, but some readers may like to read the entire novel to arrive at the solution, and thus may be taken as a good maneuver aimed at publicity.
7) “The Book of Tobit” by Carla Coupe: a very good pastiche. According to another reviewer it is allegedly built upon one of the stories in the lost & lamented radio series of Sherlockian adventures penned by Anthony Boucher, and if it is true then the whole incident is indeed very-very unfortunate.
CLASSIC REPRINT: “The Reigate Squires” by Arthur Conan Doyle: a classic, and needs no words on my part about it.
POETRY: “The Shadow Train” by Mike Allen: Difficult to comment upon.
The editor has solicited submissions for the magazine. I would like to beg him to exercise some actual editorial discretion in terms of picking up the material for printing, rather than entertaining hastily made commitments. Also, I would like to request the editor to try to reprint some of the non-fiction works that are presently languishing in obscure Sherlockian magazines across the world, as a homage to those indefatigable scholars, and also to enhance the quality of this magazine.