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Publisher's Summary

This compelling biography examines the extraordinary life and strange contrasts of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, the struggling provincial doctor who became the most popular storyteller of his age when he created Sherlock Holmes. From his youthful exploits aboard a whaling ship to his often stormy friendships with such figures as Harry Houdini and George Bernard Shaw, Conan Doyle lived a life as gripping as any of his adventures.

Exhaustively researched and elegantly written, Teller of Tales sets aside many myths and misconceptions to present a vivid portrait of the man behind the legend of Baker Street, with a particular emphasis on the Psychic Crusade that dominated his final years, the work that Conan Doyle himself felt to be "the most important thing in the world".

©1999 Daniel Stashower; (P)2001 Books on Tape, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"[An] excellent biography of the man who created Sherlock Holmes - and who would like to have been remembered for a great deal more. "(The New York Times Book)
"A gripping sympathetic bio that proves that Doyle was anything but elementary." (Entertainment Weekly)
"An appealing and much-needed biography of the man who created one of literature's renowned eccentrics." (The Wall Street Journal)

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  • Overall

A lively, enjoyable look at Conan Doyle

While I knew the rough facts about Doyle's life, I found a great many new bits of information in this biography, and came away with a greater appreciation of Doyle's body of work - though still very puzzled about his inability to be objective about the spiritualism movement. The book is full of wonderful anecdotes, and describes many of Doyle's less-well-known works in ways that made me want to dash out and read them. Narrator Robert Whitfield (aka Simon Vance) does a marvelous job here. Recommended.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Sympathetic biography

I would recommend this to anyone interested in Conan Doyle, his work, or the history of the turn of the previous century. Well written and sympathetic. A case could be made that it is a little too sympathetic, but if it was not so Conan Doyle could easily be portrayed as a nut case. As it is, the latter portion of his life is more comfortable to listen to. His wit is well displayed which also makes for a good read.

Richard Matthews as usual does a stellar job. It is, however, a little un-nerving to hear Felix Leiter (the American CIA agent in Casino Royal) as the voice of the American newspapers. Perhaps he borrowed the voice from Simon Vance or Robert Whitfield.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Stan
  • WindhoekNamibia
  • 02-06-10

Enjoyable, personal human history on Conan Doyle

A well-presented audio-biography showing Conan Doyle's pioneering history as writer. This should be of interest to a wide variety of readers/listeners and would-be authors - esp.those in the field of specific, clear observation in detection.