Guided tours of Bond, Holmes, and Lovecraft

I don’t know if it qualifies as a meme (or if the cool people are even still using that word), but Ken Hite started something nifty with his “Tour de Lovecraft” project. Hite read his way through H.P. Lovecraft’s stories and wrote up a short essay about each one—a combination of critical analysis and personal reflection. Although it started as a project on his blog, those essays have been published as a book (which I heartily recommend, should you ever decide to delve into Lovecraft yourself).

Now others have picked up that idea, following the same format with different authors:

  • Tour de Bond: Gareth-Michael Skarka reads through Ian Fleming’s 007 novels. Very interesting if, like me, you’ve seen many of the Bond films but never read the stories upon which they were (often very loosely, it seems) based.
  • Tour de Holmes: Eddy Webb gives the Sherlock Holmes tales a similar treatment.

Both are well worth following. There’s something very appealing about reading a fan’s overview of their favorite series—it’s not “Everything Ian Fleming wrote ROCKS!!!!” fanboy gushing, but something more like “Here are the points at which Fleming really shines; here’s where he tripped up; and here are the elements that made me fall in love with his work.”

I really enjoy this “tour” format. It works well with short and/or serial literature of the Lovecraft, Holmes, and Bond variety. I’ve considered undertaking a project like this myself, but am unsure if I’d be able to stick with it.

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3 Comments

  1. michele says:

    I can nag you to stick with it, if you want. That’s what wives are for, right?

  2. Eddy says:

    Thanks for the nod to the Tour de Holmes. Ken keyed into a great way to discuss literature, especially literature that is woefully misunderstood by current popular culture. Russell Bailley over at the Fantasy Heartbreaker blog is also consider a “Tour de Lankhmar.”

  3. Andy says:

    You’re welcome, Eddy. I really enjoy the Tour de Holmes entries.

    I’d love to read a similar treatment of Leiber. I’ll watch Russell’s blog in the hopes that he decides to do that. Thanks for the tip.

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