The Sign of the Four

Ian Edginton, Author, Arthur Conan Doyle, Author, I. N. J. Culbard, Illustrator
Arthur Conan Doyle, Ian Edginton, and I.N.J. Culbard, Sterling, $14.95 trade paper (136p) ISBN 978-1-4027-8003-5
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Adaptations of Doyle's Sherlock Holmes adventures have been mounted in virtually every medium short of nude interpretive dance and have varied widely in quality, but this version of the second Holmes novel is outstanding. Reuniting the creative team that previously adapted The Hound of the Baskervilles and A Study in Scarlet, this volume features all of the hallmarks of the original prose. and the visual translation is rich with Victorian period atmosphere. Culbard's animation background is evident in the clean and deceptively simple artwork. The adaptation also does justice to the complicated plot involving a secret born during the Indian Rebellion in 1857.The narrative is also notable in the Holmes oeuvre for featuring Watson confronting Holmes about the detective's cocaine habit (which Holmes claims keeps his mind sharp when his daily life becomes a bore), and the introduction of Mary Morstan, a client who comes to mean a great deal to Dr. Watson. A real treat in every way. (Mar.)
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