The Hound of the Baskervilles by Arthur Conan Doyle
Review,  Classics,  Mystery

The Hound of the Baskervilles by Arthur Conan Doyle – Best classic horror mystery

The Hound of the Baskervilles is impressive, engaging, atmospheric, and well-written classic horror mystery featuring the best detective duo of literature.

classic horror mystery

The Hound of the Baskervilles (Sherlock Holmes #5) by Arthur Conan Doyle

First published September 1, 1901

Read Date : August 16, 2023

Genre : Classis / Mystery

Pages : 196

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Previous Books in Series I Read –

A Study in Scarlet (Book 1)
The Sign of Four (Book 2)
The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes (Book 3)
The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes (Book 4)

Synopsis

‘The barren scene, the sense of loneliness, and the mystery and urgency of my task all struck a chill into my heart’

Could the sudden death of Sir Charles Baskerville have been caused by the gigantic ghostly hound that is said to have haunted his family for generations? Arch-rationalist Sherlock Holmes characteristically dismisses the theory as nonsense. And immersed in another case, he sends Watson to Devon to protect the Baskerville heir and observe the suspects close at hand. With its atmospheric setting on the ancient, wild moorland and its savage apparition, The Hound of the Baskervilles is one of the greatest crime novels ever written. Rationalism is pitted against the supernatural, good against evil, as Sherlock Holmes seeks to defeat a foe almost his equal.

Review

The Hound of the Baskervilles is Best classic horror mystery I read so far.

The Hound of the Baskervilles is an impressive classic horror mystery that starts with a supernatural case brought to Sherlock and Watson’s notice turns out to be more sinister and complex murder case with a villain worthy of Sherlock’s steel.

It was good to read my favorite detectives once again. Writing is beautiful, engaging, and atmospheric. There is a different format than other books in series. Here the story is told through Watson’s diary entries and reports he sent to Sherlock and Sherlock isn’t in the picture for half of the story as Sherlock sent Watson with their new client Henry Baskerville and stayed back in London for other cases.

Plot was really good. I loved the narrative of the case and little chase at the beginning. The devil hound, a family curse, the legend of the black sheep of the Baskerville family that started the curse, the mysterious death of Sir Charles Baskerville, and the danger to new heir Sir Henry Baskerville made the plot tense and interesting. The setting of Dartmoor, Devon is the center of the story and Watson’s account in his reports and diary creates a gloomy, ominous atmospheric vibe adding more tension to the mystery.

Watson was as amazingly loyal and supportive as in previous books. I liked how without Sherlock he tried to take action like Sherlock, always thinking what Sherlock would do. It shows how much he learned from Sherlock all this time. Sherlock was as always brilliant. I liked how he gave the element of surprise. I was expecting him to appear in Dartmoor at some point but not the way he did. His plan was fantastic.

I liked the moral dilemmas the characters faced about what to do with convict without risking or troubling other innocent people. There is theme of good vs evil and a layer of physical and mental abuse, maltreatment of animals, and women’s position in society.

The twists and turns were good. The mystery was unpredictable. I couldn’t guess the identity of the culprit until it was revealed nor could figure out the culprit made the devil hound real. I agree with many readers, I felt sorry for the hound. It was treated so poorly and detectives and other characters just showed fear than showing pity for the poor creature. It was amazing how Sherlock solved the mystery and how things were wrapped up with a satisfactory end.

This might not be the best case of Sherlock but I loved this solely for the setting and writing and if we look at when it was published it sure makes it one of the best classic horror mystery in that time period.

Overall, The Hound of the Baskervilles is impressive, engaging, atmospheric, and well-written classic horror mystery featuring the best detective duo of literature.

I recommend this if you like,
Classic horror mystery
Other SHerlock Holmes books
Atmospheric setting
spooky legend
family curse
detective mystery

My Favorite Quotes-

β€œThe world is full of obvious things which nobody by any chance ever observes.”

β€œEvil indeed is the man who has not one woman to mourn him.”

β€œThere is nothing more stimulating than a case where everything goes against you.”

β€œHe burst into one of his rare fits of laughter as he turned away from the picture. I have not heard him laugh often, and it has always boded ill to somebody.”

β€œThe past and the present are within my field of inquiry, but what a man may do in the future is a hard question to answer.”

“One cannot always have the success for which one hopes. An investigation needs facts and not legends or rumors.”

“Intense mental concentration has a curious way of blotting out what has passed.”

Book Links

Goodreads | Amazon.in | Amazon.com | Amazon.co.uk

Thank you for reading! Let’s chat..,

What do you think about the book and review?
What is your favorite horror mystery?

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Hi, I'm Yesha, an Indian book blogger. Avid and eclectic reader who loves to read with a cup of tea. Not born reader but I don't think I’m going to stop reading books in this life. β€œYou can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me.”

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