A Study in Emerald

As you have probably guessed, I’m a reader. I read a lot. In addition to the daily Internet news, I’m currently reading “From the Earth To the Moon” by Jules Verne (great steampunk engineering), “A Tale of Two Cities” by Charles Dickens (powerful and poingiant), “Pride and Prejudice” by Jane Austen (pedantic and annoying), and “Gateway” by Fredrick Pohl (great old modern sci-fi). However, I put all of that aside when someone pointed out the short story “A Study in Emerald” by Neil Gaiman (thanks Summer!)

If you’re a fan of Gaiman’s writing (Neverwhere, Sandman, etc.) then you’re probably already interested in looking for this story. Gaiman is one of the best fantasy writers alive, and a personal favorite of mine. He’s also quite a fan of H.P. Lovecraft, which is what brings me to this post today.

<Spoiler Alert. Story elements are discussed here>

Imagine an alternate past, where the Great Old Ones have risen, taken dominance over mankind, and ruled them as benevolent dictators. Imagine further that Sherlock Holmes was called up to consult on the murder of a consort to the “Queen”. Further, imagine that it was all flawlessly rendered by a man who seemed to be channelling Conan Doyle directly. That is what the “Study in Emerald” is about.

<End Spoiler Alert />

“A Study in Emerald” won the 2004 Hugo Award for Best Short Story, and the 2005 Locus Award for Best Novelette.

The best part is, you can download it free as either a PDF file or as an Audiobook read by the author.

Enjoy.

P.S. If you’re hungry for more, why not check out his short story “I Cthulhu”

5 Responses to “A Study in Emerald”

  1. input_device says:

    firstly, STEAMPUNK YEAH! Difference Engine and Iron Council are my ICONS OF LORE.

    secondly, that short story was so awesome a game studio decided to create a PC adventure game based on it. look up Sherlock Holmes: the Awakened.

    and, surprisingly enough, it’s VERY fun, and what’s more, you can tell it was crafted with real love for Lovecraft and Doyle’s sleuth of sleuths. highly recommended.

  2. Annetta says:

    Thank you Thank you! I down loaded the PFD and the audio!
    What a fabulous story. I love Conan Doyle, Gaiman, And Lovecraft of course.
    I would love to see more stories in this setting…

    Anyway, great fan of yours. Calls for Cthuhlu are fabulous!
    Down with Xenu and Tom cruise, BTW.

    *waves*

  3. Dave Agnew says:

    Have you read any other Neil Gaiman Lovecraft stuff? ‘Shoggoths Old Peculiar’ in the collection of short stories ‘Smoke and Mirrors’ was great.

  4. Brand says:

    I knew that he’d written others, but I hadn’t heard of that one. Excuse me while I go look up ‘Smoke & Mirrors’.

  5. Mlknchz says:

    That story is included in a collection called “Shadows Over Baker Street”, which is several Lovecraft-tinged Holmes stories.

    The name “Sherry Vernet” was a nice touch.

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