Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Review: My Love Of All That Is Bizarre: The Erotic Adventures Of Sherlock Holmes Edited By M. Christian

The editor provides a blessedly brief introduction, there is a rather superfluous foreword (called "forward" for reasons that escape me), and then the collection of 11 stories.For obvious reasons I will focus on the stories with prominent gay elements.

The Adventure of the Gentleman Travelers by Angela Caperton is a well book-ended story of the classic type where Holmes is paired with another prominent male character from the canon just as the Curious Case on Pomegranate Street (Zachery Jean) pairs him with a historical figure. L'Instinct Suffit by Kate Lear and The Turkish Bath by Violet Vernet are both very adept PWPs that nevertheless manage to tell us quite a lot about the author's version/vision of Holmes and Watson.

Of the rest with a more heterosexual or mixed focus I particularly enjoyed The Case of the Unnatural Natural Instinct (PM White) which is deftly written and a touch romantic without being in any way a romance--and The Curious Incident by M Christian for a clever story and the best homage to canon n the collection.  I was particularly bemused by The Picture of Oscar Wilde (Michael Kurland) which, while clever, has no erotic content (and also no Sherlock Holmes). Other stories in the collection make up for it by include very little but sex.

In general the stories are very diverse and some are marred by anachronisms and quirks as blatant as a tiny tracking mechanism that shows its position as a small red light on a map and a huge diamond referred to as "the Moonstone" (the name of a semi-precious feldspar). But likewise there is some apt use of Victorian notions of mesmerism and the proper treatment of female hysteria (which is perhaps a little over-used). Overall, a mixed bag but very enjoyable as much for the strange surprises as competently predictable tales.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

I'm a big fan of Michael Kurland's Moriarty series, and I was surprised when I saw that his Oscar Wilde story would be included in an erotic fiction anthology. It was originally written for the Strand Mystery Magazine, and I'm curious why it was reprinted in this format.

Emily Veinglory: said...

Hopefully not for the sake of including his name...(?)