Sherlock Holmes's observation to Dr Watson at the start of A Case of Identity is certainly borne out by the twelve short stories in this collection, characterised by the originality and inventiveness that has made Conan Doyle a household name.
The familiar sanctuary of 221B Baker Street is regularly invaded by a procession of puzzled clients with bizarre problems to solve.
Holmes's cases include a young engineer who arrives with one of his thumbs cut off at the root; a governess who has been offered a tempting salary provided she dresses in the exact manner specified by her employers; and a visit from a frightened young woman whose sister has inexplicably died from fear and nervous shock.
These and other seemingly intractable puzzles are solved by Sherlock Holmes's inimitable blend of intellectual analysis and inspired deduction.
Like the faithful Watson, in these stories the reader can enjoy their position at the centre of events, and admire the master of detection at work.