THE BALD-HEADED TRUST. No sooner has Sherlock Holmes arrived in Plymouth for a short vacation than he finds himself in the middle of an unsolved crime – the Telegraph Murders. Two electrical engineers were found dead after completing a contract for the new Western Union telegraph office. Holmes’s very unusual helper in this case is an exceptionally pious but still attractive woman whois the proprietor of a Christian bookstore.Some evil genius is behind a scheme to rob shareholders of millions of pounds and is prepared to commit murder to make sure his diabolical plan works. Holmes, Watson and his new recruits must first deduce what is going on and then solve the crime. Readers who are sympathetic to devout Christian believers will enjoy seeing some saintly folks help the world’s greatest detective. Lovers of Sherlock Holmes mysteries will enjoy this new story, written today but as faithful as possible to the characters, heroes, villains, language, and setting of the original Sherlock Holmes. Buy now and enjoy.
Targeted Age Group:: adult
What Inspired You to Write Your Book?
As a Christian and as a fan of The Canon of original Sherlock Holmes stories, I thought that Christian readers would enjoy a mystery story in which a devout Christian family helped Sherlock Holmes solve a mystery.
How Did You Come up With Your Characters?
The characters of Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson are borrowed from the original stories by Arthur Conan Doyle. The husband and wife who own The Little Flock Christian Bookstore are modeled on many highly educated Christians I have had the privilege of knowing over the past several decades. The bad guys are borrowed from the news and other great detective stories.
“The proprietor," said Holmes, "was a youngish woman; I estimate in her late twenties. I can only describe her as plain but handsome. Tall and sturdy. She had the red hair of a Highland lass, but it was all bundled up into braids and wound about the top of her head. If ever it were to be let down and taken out of braids, I imagine it would extend well down past the small of her back. Her skin was pale, as is common to redheads, but her complexion flawless, rendering her blue eyes quite striking. Her countenance was rather perfectly balanced, but she made no effort at all to enhance it. She had not a speck of powder or paint upon her, no jewelry, and no colorful or stylish clothing such as you would normally see on an attractive young woman. Her plain white dress covered her from her neck to her wrists and indicated an obsessive modesty.
“Assuming her to no more than a sad Reformist Protestant who was their equivalent of a nun, I ignored her and perused the bookshelves. The shop had some excellent works by St. Augustine, an entire set of Calvin’s Institutes, the collected sermons of Dr. Spurgeon and a rather wide assortment of books by John Nelson Darby, Anthony Norris Groves, and George Mueller. Are you familiar with them?
“A very little,” I replied. “Are they not some of the leading lights of one of the puritanical sects of evangelicals?”
“Yes. Precisely. And their movement has had particular popularity here in Plymouth. I confess that my indulgence in some of the pleasant vices that they condemn would exclude me forever from their ranks, as became abundantly obvious when I sat in one of their chairs to look through a volume of biography and prepared to enjoy at least one pipe of fine tobacco.”
“Oh oh,” I interjected. “I gather the good Christian shop lady was not pleased with that prospect.”
“Not at all,” Holmes replied. “But her words both surprised and annoyed me. She said, ‘You do know, Mr. Sherlock Holmes, that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit and you would be a healthier man and a better detective if you ceased breathing poisons into it.’ Now, at first, I was a little annoyed, and not pleased with being deprived of the joy of tobacco. I also had some unkind thoughts about you, my dear friend, for publishing that story and giving me such notoriety that even shop ladies in Plymouth would recognize me. She continued giving me her little talking to and said, ‘You are quite welcome to stay and read, but we will not allow our premises to be fouled by tobacco smoke.’ Before I could think up some snide rejoinder, she then gave me a warm smile and proceeded to say, ‘Please forgive my forwardness, sir, but my curiosity will not permit me to refrain from asking you how it is that London’s famous detective is to be found in a Christian bookstore in Plymouth so early on a fall morning?’”
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