“Sherlock Holmes and the Remaining Improbable” is a fantastic love letter to Conan Doyle’s original works, and a wonderful representation of literature’s most inimitable detective . . .

“I fairly flew through this book, slowing down only to savor the story for a little longer. It’s extremely well written and the main players match my memories of the originals while at the same time growing and developing as only the best characters can. The additional characters (there must be suspects, after all) are all fantastic, quirky without being over the top. The mystery itself was fantastic. It wasn’t forced, the final solution made perfect sense in response to the clues, and it was very clever.” Witty and Sarcastic Book Club Reviews

What’s it about?

The game is not afoot. The Better-Every-Day world of 1895 is gone, even hard to recall as WWI ends. From his rural home, Holmes no longer provokes Scotland Yard’s envy or his landlady’s impatience, but neither is he content with the study of bees. August 1920 finds him filling out entry papers at a nearly defunct psychiatric clinic on the Normandy coast. England’s new Dangerous Drugs Act declares his cocaine use illegal and he aims to quit entirely. Confronted by a question as to his “treatment goal,” Holmes hesitates, aware that his real goal far exceeds the capacity of any clinic. His scribbled response, “no more solutions, but true resolution,” seems more a vow than a goal to his psychiatrist, Pierre Joubert. The doctor is right. Like a tiny explosion unaccountably shifting a far-reaching landscape, the simple words churn desperate action and interlocking mystery into the lives of Holmes’ friends and enemies both.

“A huge imagination . . . Think all this (given the blurb) sounds like psychological dissertation? Well it isn’t, and it doesn’t read that way. Susanne Dutton seems to almost live this story, and she makes we readers do the same.” Our Town Book Reviews

“There is plenty of mystery and suspense to keep the pages turning as Holmes and Watson work their case. The characters are all truly well thought out and developed. I would recommend Sherlock Holmes and the Remaining Improbable to all fans of Holmes and Watson.” The Avid Reader Reviews

Sherlock fans looking for a unique story about their beloved hero should check this out!

Susanne M. Dutton is a Philadelphian writing fiction and poetry. She’s the one who hid during high school gym, produced an alternative newspaper and exchanged notes in Tolkien’s Elfish language with her few friends. While earning her B.A. in English, she drove a shabby Ford Falcon with a changing array of homemade bumper strips:  Art for Art’s Sake, Forgive Us Our Trespasses, Free Bosie from the Scorn of History. Later, her interests in myth and depth psychology led to graduate and postgraduate degrees in counseling. 

Nowadays, having outlived her mortgage and her professional counseling life, she aims herself at her desk most days; where she tangles with whatever story she can’t get out of her head.

For ebook or print:

https://www.propertiuspress.com/our-bookstore/Sherlock-Holmes-and-the-Remaining-Improbable-by-Susanne-Dutton-p310417036

OR

For paperback:

https://www.amazon.com/Sherlock-Holmes-Remaining-Improbable-Susanne/dp/1678075310/ref=sr_1_3

Thank you!

Holmes on “How to Live” VS. Watson on “How to Live with Holmes”

“Mr. Holmes, at age 167, what basic life advice can you offer?”

1) Your brain has only so much space. Be on guard against unnecessary information. I refuse to know about the solar system, for instance.  

2) Romantic relationships only drain your energy for better things. I mean it. Don’t even pretend to indulge such a thing unless you are disguised and or it’s necessary to solve a crime. If you have to convince yourself of this, you are lost already.  It goes without saying that you can and should love your queen—from a safe distance.

3) Dogs are more likely to be reliable. Rent one if you need one.

4) Never draw easy conclusions. Don’t assume. Check it out. The so-called “obvious truth” or “what people say” is nonsense. You must gather the facts yourself. Until you have assembled those facts you are only gathering data. Leave it at that, unless you want to be as inept as Scotland Yard.

5) Live alone, unless you can’t afford it. If you must “share rooms,” choose an easy-going person unlike yourself, one who is likely to be useful to you.

6) As an afterthought to #2. If your logical brain goes wonky and insists on a relationship with a soon-to-be-married opera diva from New Jersey, limit yourself to witnessing her wedding–in disguise.  Afterward, you may allow yourself to retain a photograph of the woman. Do not buy, steal, or purchase the photograph.  As the lady had a last maidenly fling (or a dance, anyway) with a king too ashamed of her to marry her, that gentleman has a photo he will let you have if you ask politely.

“And you, Doctor Watson?”

1) If you share rooms with a stranger who takes dangerous drugs when he’s bored, adores the queen, and sets up toxic chemistry experiments in the one common room you share, adapt as best you can.

2) If that same fellow claims to be the one and only consulting detective in London (population 6.7 million in 1896), humor him.

3) Agree to help your detective on his cases and write them up. You will share in his success. Some of his glory will be mistaken for yours and you will find yourself meeting attractive, grateful women.

4) If you find yourself marrying any of these women, be sure it’s well known what happened to each of them before you marry again. Otherwise, history–and millions of Sherlockians–will wonder. These people pay exaggerated attention, so be specific to avoid confusion. Ditto for your vague, wandering war wounds.

The game is not afoot. The Better-Every-Day world of 1895 is gone, even hard to recall as WWI ends. From his rural home, Holmes no longer provokes Scotland Yard’s envy or his landlady’s impatience, but neither is he content with the study of bees. August 1920 finds him filling out entry papers at a nearly defunct psychiatric clinic on the Normandy coast. England’s new Dangerous Drugs Act declares his cocaine use illegal and he aims to quit entirely. Confronted by a question as to his “treatment goal,” Holmes hesitates, aware that his real goal far exceeds the capacity of any clinic. His scribbled response, “no more solutions, but true resolution,” seems more a vow than a goal to his psychiatrist, Pierre Joubert. The doctor is right. Like a tiny explosion unaccountably shifting a far-reaching landscape, the simple words churn desperate action and interlocking mystery into the lives of Holmes’ friends and enemies both.

ebook/print link:

https://www.propertiuspress.com/our-bookstore/Sherlock-Holmes-and-the-Remaining-Improbable-by-Susanne-Dutton-p310417036

or print link:

https://www.amazon.com/Sherlock-Holmes-Remaining-Improbable-Susanne/dp/1678075310/ref=sr_1_3

Susanne M. Dutton is a Philadelphian writing fiction and poetry. She’s the one who hid during high school gym, produced an alternative newspaper and exchanged notes in Tolkien’s Elfish language with her few friends. While earning her B.A. in English, she drove a shabby Ford Falcon with a changing array of homemade bumper strips:  Art for Art’s Sake, Forgive Us Our Trespasses, Free Bosie from the Scorn of History. Later, her interests in myth and depth psychology led to graduate and postgraduate degrees in counseling. 

Nowadays, having outlived her mortgage and her professional counseling life, she aims herself at her desk most days; where she tangles with whatever story she can’t get out of her head.

“Can’t Believe How Fast I Finished it Up! $17.95, Please.”

Photo by Jordan Benton on Pexels.com

Writers and Word Counts (Just my thoughts)

For me, the question is more about pace than numbers. “Sherlock Holmes and the Remaining Improbable”– and its research–took three years, but I did write and publish two other long short stories, as well as poems, in that time. I have been a member of three excellent writers’ groups, The Muse Center in Norfolk, Virginia, Charlotte Writers in Charlotte, North Carolina, and Kelly Writers House at U Penn in Philadelphia. Writers talk about word counts, of course. My way is to find the pace that suits you, rather like letting your horse adapt the right pace for that horse’s health, the rider, and the particular journey. Experiment. If my horse has a steep hill to climb, slower is only right. Are fast dances better than slow dances? Are sculptures in soft materials better than those in slow, hard-to-work stone? The danger in either too fast or too slow is that the pace might defeat the story and the writer. If I were to write only a couple paragraphs a day, I’d lose any sense of my characters and their challenges. It might be like stringing out a message to a friend, a few phrases a day.

I can’t imagine wearing a button saying either, “This novel took me ten years. It must be worth at least $17.95, paperback,” or “I’m amazed how quickly I finished this up! $17.95, please.” 

Links Below!

The game is not afoot. The Better-Every-Day world of 1895 is gone, even hard to recall as WWI ends. From his rural cottage, Holmes no longer provokes Scotland Yard’s envy or his landlady’s impatience, but neither is he content with the study of bees. August 1920 finds him filling out entry papers at a nearly defunct psychiatric clinic on the Normandy coast. England’s new Dangerous Drugs Act declares his cocaine use illegal and he aims to quit entirely. Confronted by a question as to his “treatment goal,” Holmes hesitates, aware that his real goal far exceeds the capacity of any clinic. His scribbled response, “no more solutions, but one true resolution,” seems more a vow than a goal to his psychiatrist, Pierre Joubert. The doctor is right. Like a tiny explosion unaccountably shifting a far-reaching landscape, the simple words churn desperate action and interlocking mystery into the lives of Holmes’ friends and enemies both.

Susanne Dutton is a Philadelphian writing fiction and poetry. She’s the one who hid during high school gym, produced an alternative newspaper and exchanged notes in Tolkien’s Elfish language with her few friends. While earning her B.A. in English, she drove a shabby Ford Falcon with a changing array of homemade bumper strips:  Art for Art’s Sake, Forgive Us Our Trespasses, Free Bosie from the Scorn of History. Later, her interests in myth and depth psychology led to graduate and postgraduate degrees in counseling. 

Nowadays, having outlived her mortgage and her professional counseling life, she aims herself at her desk most days; where she tangles with whatever story she can’t get out of her head.

Born in Des Moines, Iowa, Susanne grew up in the SF Bay Area, has two grown children, and lives with her husband in an old Philadelphia house, built of the stones dug from the ground where it sits. 

https://www.propertiuspress.com/our-bookstore/Sherlock-Holmes-and-the-Remaining-Improbable-by-Susanne-Dutton-p310417036

https://www.amazon.com/dp/1678075310/ref=cm_sw_r_fa_dp_J3EJWBA5ASJJ2KCJCYR3?fbclid=IwAR3cmhWfllK0UaaT4WHbjZGXnBuhTvnyJ74clHMcAu3_d5voz9mGCU2hLYw

A Woman’s Handwriting? Is there such a thing? Holmes and Lestrade Argue.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Holmes smiled thinly at Lestrade, and set aside the lavender-scented letter with it’s swooping, swirling message.

He said, “Come now, Inspector. Think. I’ll grant you it reads like blackmail, but you have no reason to put it down to a woman. You know as well as I do. One can do wonders with other people’s expectations.”

Pall Mall Gazette Advertisement, December 1893

He flipped open the latest Gazette and pointed to an advertisement. “Goodness knows what this Prof. Muller would do if I applied for a specialist in the lady-civil-servant hand.”

Answer: No such thing!

Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

An expert agrees:

Wrong question,” says Barnard Collier on Quora. “The right one may be: Why can’t we distinguish between male and female handwriting?

Our company www.graphologyconsulting.com has for almost a quarter century collected, analyzed, and evaluated the handwriting of more than 130,000 medical doctors and nurses worldwide, plus an equal number of people from various professions and walks of life, and among many financial classes, and if there was or is, at present, a way to pin

point the difference on a gender-based scale, we haven’t found it. Nor has any other expert biometric graphologist, and pattern recognition tests may enjoy a 6 to 4 chance of deducing gender from pixel-levelscans and associated algorithms.

Sherlock Holmes and the Remaining Improbable* by Susanne Dutton

The game is not afoot. The Better-Every-Day world of 1895 is gone, even hard to recall as WWI ends. From his rural cottage, Sherlock Holmes no longer provokes Scotland Yard’s envy or his landlady’s impatience, but neither is he content with the study of bees. August 1920 finds Holmes filling out entry papers at a nearly defunct psychiatric clinic on the Normandy coast. England’s new Dangerous Drugs Act declares his cocaine use illegal and he aims to quit entirely. Confronted by a question as to his “treatment goal,” Holmes hesitates, aware that his real goal far exceeds the capacity of any clinic. His scribbled response, “no more solutions, but one true resolution,” seems more a vow than a goal to his psychiatrist, Pierre Joubert. The doctor is right. Like a tiny explosion unaccountably shifting a far-reaching landscape, the simple words churn desperate action and interlocking mystery into the lives of Holmes’ friends and enemies both.

Preorder Link: * https://www.propertiuspress.com/our-bookstore/Sherlock-Holmes-and-the-Remaining-Improbable-by-Susanne-Dutton-p310417036

Meanwhile, at a (somewhat rundown) clinic, the detective meets with his shrink…

December 1893 London Illustrated News Advertisement

From Sherlock Holmes’ Initial Session, Le Dieppe Clinic, Normandy 25/August/1920 “With little thought, M. Holmes continued to self-medicate, not daily, but frequently, ‘as necessary,’ throughout his youth, especially aged thirteen to sixteen. He recalls his ever-ready Toothache Drops (cocaine) as a favourite. Even then, he perceived these products as medicines that one used to ‘get through’ what one must. He is unsure when ‘getting through’ began to apply to daily life.”       P. Joubert, Medical Director

—“Sherlock Holmes and the Remaining Improbable”  by Susanne Dutton, coming soon from Propertius Press