Professor Moriarty: The Hound of the D’Urbervilles by Kim Newman

I just finished The Hound of the D’Urbervilles by Kim Newman and here follows the review.

The Book
If you imagine the twisted twins of Sherlock Holmes and John Watson you get James Moriarty and Sebastian “Basher” Moran. This is a collection of short stories about Moriarty and Moran. Moriarty is a consulting criminal who runs an organization called the Firm, where people from around the world can come and ask for help. Moran works as a hit man. Moriarty does all the brain work and Moran smashes the heads in. There are seven stories and the titles are all puns of Sherlock Holmes titles, which is fun. People from the Holmes/Watson universe show up, like Irene Adler. The book chronicles their lives for about 10-20 years, the same as John and Sherlock, it starts when they begin living together, and it ends with Reichenbach.

I really loved it. I thought it was hilarious. Moran has the role of Watson in this book, he writes a diary of his life with Moriarty, so we get his thoughts and ideas and he is a completely awful human being. I love him so much. He basically hates everyone. Every foreigner, he hates women, he hates Americans, Natives, especially Belgians, but most of all he hates white men. I love him. Moran is a fairly well educated man. He went to Eton and then joined the army, then he was discharged at some point and became a big game hunter. He then joins the good Professor in his empire of crime. He is rude, he is odious, he thinks he knows best, he’s a misogynist tool, and he is very well written, which is just so great. Also, all the chapter starts with him basically going: “this is what I will write about, and I hate all of it and all the people involved.”

The Professor is creepy, and very Sherlock Holmes-like, but sort of the evil version. He doesn’t really like the science of deduction, and prefers doing research and working hard. He is ruthless, but he usually uses Moran for skull bashing. He can kill though, with pretty much anything. He has this project with wasps, where he releases them on the population, or more specifically children, to see how they react, I guess? It’s very creepy.

I liked how Sherlock Holmes was referred to. He is constantly called the Thin Man, and Moriarty despises him, but also gives him pretty much no credit, which I liked. I really love Sherlock Holmes by the way, but I fucking loved that Moriarty hated him so much. Yes, this is a bit odd, but I loved it. I like Newman’s style and writing. It’s very reminiscent of Sherlock Holmes, so that’s good. 

I also liked the prologue. It is about a lady scholar, in 2011, who is called into a bank called Box Brothers, which features in Moran’s stories as well. They have found a manuscript, by a certain Sebastian Moran, and the manager wants to know if it’s authentic. And the scholar relates the stories in the manuscript. I really liked it, because the book purports to be real, and the little prologue sort of grounds it in reality, it makes it seem more real, I guess.


It was a lot of fun, and I liked it. I now want to read more of Kim Newman’s Anno Dracula books, which are also great.