The Chronological Sherlock Holmes Challenge

12/29/16 edit: Full schedule here.

Two years ago, I started on a rereading of the Sherlock Holmes series, with the intent of reading the stories in the approximate order that they occur in Holmes’s lifetime.  I didn’t get very far, but I never abandoned the concept.  It’s been about ten years since I first read the complete Sherlock Holmes, and he is my favorite fictional character.  It’s time to get serious about this overdue challenge!

So – I’m revamping it in under the wordy title of “The Chronological Sherlock Holmes Challenge,” 2017-2018 edition.  This is a 16-month mission to read all 56 short stories and the four novels.  Of course, the series could be easily read in half a year, but I want to take my time, blog about each tale, and leave room for other reading, too.  If anyone wants to join, I’d love to share the discussion!

The idea is:

  • Read the stories in the order found on this Sherlock Holmes Timeline…with one exception.  I really can’t agree on having any stories come between “The Final Problem” and “The Empty House,” despite whatever date Watson wrote that comes between them.  Instead, I’ll read “Wisteria Lodge” and “Three Gables” after “The Empty House.”
  • The pace will be one short story per week, and then three weeks per novel when a novel is encountered.  Though novels and short stories may overlap, I will read consecutively: as soon as a novel is listed on the timeline, I’ll complete the whole novel before moving on to the next short. This is a fairly relaxed schedule, and it fits neatly into 16 months.
  • If you wish to join in but use a different schedule, feel free!  Once you start reading this series, it’s very, very hard to set aside…

And now, to wait (impatiently) till January.  😉

More buttons, because I can’t get enough of Sidney Paget’s illustrations:

24 thoughts on “The Chronological Sherlock Holmes Challenge

  1. Oh, so cool. I am paralyzed to make any commitments for next year at this time, aside from one, but this is another challenge I will ponder. I want to read SH very much.

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  2. I know the feeling – I'm trying not to overcommit for 2017, too! At least the SH series is very much a page turner, and I'm hoping this pace will be easy enough in case any catch up is needed. 🙂

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  3. Oooo, this challenge is so tempting. I wasn't planning on reading Sherlock but you may have changed my mind. :-)On another note, I'm glad to see you back blogging again! I've missed your presence and being introduced to a number of great and unique reads.

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  4. I have a collection of Sherlock short stories (I've only read the Scarlett Woman) and I've read Valley of Fear/The Hound of the Baskervilles so I might join you when you get up to the short stories in my collection I haven't read. Good luck with this challenge it sounds amazing!

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  5. Cool, I hope you will be able to join in! SH is a wonderful series in that you can enjoy reading it in practically any order. The first time I read it, I didn't even know about A Study in Scarlet, the Casebook series, etc…it was a pleasant surprise to discover them later!

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  6. I've been looking for a reading challenge for 2017 and this one is perfect! It even overlaps with my \”spend nothing on myself in December\” challenge because the complete series was free for Kindle. It's a win-win! 🙂

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  7. I'm so in! Sherlock Holmes is my favorite literary character–my dog is even named Sherlock :)http://thebookkeepersapprentice.blogspot.com/2016/11/2017-reading-challenges.html

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  8. I'm totally going to join in! I've set up a page here (and added the timetable, I hope that's okay! It's mainly so I know how to pace myself) 🙂 I love the Sherlock Holmes stories, looking forward to re-reading (and reading some for the first time!)https://fleetingwhimsies.com/chronological-sherlock-holmes-challenge/

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