David Grann, The New Yorker staffer and author of “The Lost city of Z” has launched his second book.
The blazing flames on the book cover seem to be the doors that lead the reader to those personal hells which some people live in their ordinary lives. The book is a collection of 12 narrative journalism stories.
Each story represents a wagon in a roller coaster that takes the reader into an emotional ride. The author descends from the climax of crimes into the deep minds of those who, driven by unexplainable forces, are committed to live on the edge of society and justice.
Grann, who has worked for major newspapers and magazines, has previously published each story independently. The stories are full of exciting and intriguing details. His language is simple and forceful. His narrative is challenging and inviting.
The book begins with the murder of Richard Green whose existence revolved around the life and work of Conan Doyle’s creation, Sherlock Holmes. Making it more difficult for the reader to recognize fiction from reality, this story presents a fascinating world of mystery and crime.
Characters are obsessed with things that aren’t common. For instance, a marine biologist who is determined to find a gigantic ocean creature; or an actor who performs in people’s most painful scenarios -their real lives.
Grann brings the characters from different parts of the world Australia, France, America, England. The author not only tells their story, he meets with every single one, interviews family members, victims and tracks those involved making the narrative rich and bright.
The author uses Watson’s words to say that fiction can never outdo real life. “If we could fly out of that window hand in hand over over this great city gently remove the roofs and peep in at the queer things which are going on……it would make all fiction most stale and unprofitable.”
“The Devil & Sherlock Holmes” engages the reader into an adventure that for most is quite calm—real life behind the eyes of criminals, cons, odd workers, heroes, victims, and ordinary people living extraordinary circumstances.
Released by Vintage books, the book is sold at $15.95 at major bookstores.