Title: The Valley of Fear.
Author: Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.
Genre: Fiction, literature, mystery, detective fiction.
Publication Date: 1915.
Summary: The mystery begins with a coded warning of imminent danger, drawing the illustrious Sherlock Holmes and the faithful Dr. Watson to a secluded English country home. A trail of bewildering clues - raincoats, dumbbells, a missing wedding ring — leads to sleuthing in the finest Holmesian tradition and the gripping backstory of a secret society that maintains its stranglehold on the community with a series of violent crimes in the American West.
My rating: 9/10.
♥ He brightened and rubbed his thin hands together as he listened to the meagre but remarkable details. A long series of sterile weeks lay behind us, and here at last there was a fitting object for those remarkable powers which, like all special gifts, become irksome to their owner when they are not in use. That razor brain blunted and rusted with inaction.
♥ “Then, with your permission, we will leave it at that, Mr. Mac. The temptation to form premature theories upon insufficient data is the bane of our profession.”
♥ “I have worked with Mr. Holmes before,” said Inspector MacDonald. “He plays the game.”
“My own idea of the game, at any rate,” said Holmes, with a smile.
♥ Three centuries have flowed past the old Manor House, centuries of births and of homecomings, of country dances and of the meetings of fox hunters. Strange that now in its old age this dark business should have cast its shadows upon the venerable walls! And yet those strange, piqued roofs and quaint, overhung gables were a fitting covering to grim and terrible intrigue. As I looked at the deep-set windows and the long sweep of the dull-coloured, water-lapped front, I felt that no more fitting scene could be set for such a tragedy.
♥ I was already asleep when I was partly awakened by his entrance.
“Well, Holmes,” I murmured, “have you found anything out?”
He stood beside me in silence, his candle in his hand. Then the tall, lean figure inclined towards me. “I say, Watson,” he whispered, “would you be afraid to sleep in the same room with a lunatic, a man with softening of the brain, an idiot whose mind has lost its grip?”
“Not in the least,” I answered in astonishment.
“Ah, that’s lucky,” he said, and not another word would he utter that night.
♥ “Follow your heart, acushla! ‘Tis a safer guide than any promise…”
♥ “I expect we all do our duty same as we see it; but we can’t all see it the same.”
♥ We all sat in silence for some minutes while those fateful eyes still strained to pierce the veil.