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The Mandala of Sherlock Holmes: The Adventures of the Great Detective in India and Tibet [Paperback]

Jamyang , Jamyang Norbu
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Jan 2003
In 1891, the public was horrified to learn that Sherlock Holmes had perished in a deadly struggle with the archcriminal Professor Moriarty at the Reichenbach Falls. Then, to their amazement, he reappeared two years later, informing the stunned Watson: 'I travelled for two years in Tibet, therefore, and amused myself by visiting Lhasa' Nothing has been known of those two missing years until Jamyang Norbu's discovery, in a rusting tin dispatch box in Darjeeling, of a flat packet carefully wrapped in waxed paper and neatly tied with stout twine. When opened the packet revealed Hurree Chunder Mookerjee's own account of his travels with Sherlock Holmes. Now, for the first time, we learn of Sherlock Holmes's brush with the Great Game, with Colonel Creighton, Lurgan Sahib and the world of Kim. We follow him north across the hot and dusty plains of India to Simla, summer capital of the British Raj, and over the high passes to the vast emptiness of the Tibetan plateau. In the medieval splendour that is Lhasa, intrigue and black treachery stalk the shadows, and in the remote and icy fastnesses of the Trans-Himalayas good and evil battle for ascendancy. As Patrick French has written, 'Read this, and your view of the great detective will never the same again.'
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 280 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC; First Printing edition (Jan 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1582343284
  • ISBN-13: 978-1582343280
  • Product Dimensions: 20.3 x 16 x 2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,116,248 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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A total success ... If you are a fan of the detective, you must read it. (Daily Express)

'The Mandala of Sherlock Holmes' is a witty fast-paced piece of entertainment of which Arthur Conan Doyle might have been proud. (Times Literary Supplement)

This book is brilliant... If you are a fan of the detective, you must read it (Daily Express) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Book Description

In 1891, the public was horrified to learn that Sherlock Holmes had perished in a deadly struggle with Moriarty at the Reichenbach Falls. Then, to their amazement, he reappeared two years later, having travelled for two years in Tibet. This is the story of the great detective's travels. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A Winning Effort Stumbles Badly At the End 8 Oct 2001
Most people who know a little about Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes series know that at one point Doyle got sick of the detective series and killed off his star character, only to be forced into "resurrecting" him after a two year absence. Here, in one of the many, many, many, modern takes on the Holmes series, eminent Tibetan author Norbu details Holmes adventures incognito in India and Tibet during those two years. The role of Dr. Watson (both as bumbling sidekick and chronicler) is here assumed by Hurree Chandar Mookerjee, a Bengali spy lifted from yet another work of fiction, Rudyard Kipling's "Kim" (and just to be totally clear, he was based on a real Indian who spied for the British!). The adventures initially consist of a plot by the henchmen of Holmes' now-dead nemesis, Moriarity, to avenge their leader's death. Holmes ends up hiding out and getting the notion to make a pilgrimage to Lhasa to meet the Dalai Lama-something strictly forbidden for Westerners. This leads to the second main adventure, which involves helping the young 13th Dalai Lama (a man critical to real-life modern Tibetan history) evade the deadly machinations of the powerful Manchu Imperial agents in Lhasa.
Norbu should first and foremost be commended for being able to almost perfectly capture the correct period speech for each character (there is a lengthy glossary at the back for all the Hinustani phrases and period slang). I say" almost" because I found Hurree's speech to be just a little too over the top, even for the type of educated servant of the Empire he is-it's just a shade too forced at times. Norbu has also captured the period perfectly and manages to seamlessly insert his own agenda by portraying early Chinese imperialism in Tibet.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A James Bond story with a serious twist 27 Dec 2000
By A Customer
When you buy this book, make sure you have a free evening or weekend in front of you. Once started you cannot stop. The book demonstrates how the world is shrinking. Who would have imagined that a Tibetan would be able to write, perfectly, a book in the style of Conan Doyle. It is so realistic that I started to wonder if it was indeed a late discovered manuscript. Even though nothing is sacrificed for the excitement of the story the books imparts useful and interesting information about Buddhism, Shambala, the Dalai Lama, Tibet and its occupation by China. The story is an excellent script for a movie. It will rival the James Bond movies for excitement but with a serious twist.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Sherlock Holmes in Tibet 18 Nov 2000
By A Customer
In many respects, this is a fabulously entertaining book. In fact, it is one of those novels that are read in a day and finished with a sense of regret - a feeling that the novel has finished too soon. In that sense, this book is a complete success. It could barely be otherwise - filling in as it does the tantalising "missing years" of Sherlock Holmes: in between his tumble with Moriarty and his sudden appearance from the abyss as a bookseller to a startled Watson when Sir Arthur gave in to public pressure. So Holmes, in this "pastiche", makes his way to India and then to Tibet, in the company of a sidekick who will be superbly familiar to readers of Kipling. And what a "ripping yarn" it is too, and free from the necessity of emulating the deceptively unique voice of Watson, the author does a tremendous job. To relate any of the events would be to spoil the plot. To Holmes purists, there are one or two gaffes (from time to time he needs the odd concept explained, which in Conan Doyle's vision he would easily have known), but overall the narrative zips along with familiarity and style. Of course, to worry about canonical inaccuracies would be to miss one of the essential themes of this work: adopting Sherlock Holmes into a pro-Tibetan mindset makes the book such an argument for the freedom of Tibet and means more to so many more people than any Richard Gere fronted documentary. After all, Holmes is the epitome of civilisation and natural fairness, and his realisation of Tibetan buddhist essence is the ultimate in popular support. All in all, this is a fine book.
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