Sorry to spoil it for you, but Sherlock Holmes, it turns out, is NOT dead.
Dun dun dunnnnn.
We start off this collection with the discussion of a mystery unfolding and Watson deciding to give it a go on his own and in the process, he stumbles upon an old man and accidentally knocks over the books and parcels he’s carrying. When the old man calls on him the next day, it turns out it was Sherlock Holmes in disguise!
The timeline of Holmes is bizarre and probably breaks rules. So this book takes place after the end of The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, and also after the novels leading up I think The Hound of the Baskervilles, and well after the events of the Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes. But now we’re back to a kind of Holmes in the present.
It’s from 1905.
Now, the collection itself is significantly stronger than The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes, and probably the equal to The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes in over all quality. I don’t think any of the stories has the same star quality of say “A Scandal in Bohemia,” or “The Red-Headed League” or “The Speckled Band” but over all they are quite good. And it does have “The Dancing Men” which is a great book about ciphers.
Ultimately I think it comes down to will. It seems that Arthur Conan Doyle’s heart is just back in it in a way that it wasn’t for The Memoirs. Also that book felt cheap as well, and this one just doesn’t.