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Fic Rec: Variance

Title: Variance
Author: Bitenomnom
Pairing: Sherlock Holmes/John Watson
Length: 800 words
Rating: not rated, I would say G
Warnings: none
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Author's summary:
“It’s actually two point nine.”
“What?”
“Meters. That you stay from me, all the time. Well—since you punched me, anyway.”
“Oh. I hadn’t really put that much thought into it.”
“How very homoscedastic of you.”

Reccer's comments: This is a charming and clever little ficlet, one of my favorites from the author's Mathematical Proof series. I love the idea behind these stories: the author, being enrolled in several graduate-level mathematics courses, decided to use the math concepts she recorded in her daily notes as prompts for Johnlock fic. She wrote the stories to illustrate the abstract concepts she was studying in fun and creative ways, and it just makes me feel kind of great about fandom? I so admire the wonderfully varied talents that our authors possess, and the way they can bring this imaginative thing that they love into unexpected parts of their life and work. This series always puts a smile on my face. So here's a delightful drabble for your busy Friday. And if you feel like it, there are 49 others in the series, with a great variety of tones and styles, that you can also explore. (Ratings and warnings vary from fic to fic, so remember to check the tags.)

fic rec: Your Want is Bigger Than You

Title: Your Want is Bigger Than You
Author: PhoenixFalls
Pairing: Ms. Hudson/Joan Watson, Ms. Hudson/OC
Length: 6000
Rating: Gen
Warnings: N/A
Verse: Elementary
Author's summary: Marthe has been keeping secrets from Joan. Joan never would have guessed this.

Reccer's comments: A thoughtful exploration of Joan's friendship with Ms Hudson (Marthe), set soon after the end of season 2. Here, Joan isn't alone to process the aftermath of her kidnapping and Sherlock's absence, and while she suspects Sherlock asked Marthe to spy on her while he was away, their friendship quickly becomes their own. Joan confronts some of her own misguided thinking about Marthe and her work as a muse. She eventually meets Marthe's new partner, Manami, who has a beautifully insightful perspective on the nature of relationships, possessiveness, and sharing (in addition to an utterly unexpected personal history that I won't spoil but is so perfectly delightful it's the reason to read this fic).
Title: I said 'dangerous,' and here you are
Artist: beatrixkiddo on tumblr
Pairing: Gen
Rating: G
Warnings: none
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Author's summary: I said 'dangerous,' and here you are.

Reccer's comments: A lot of the art I rec tends toward realism, but this is something different and wonderful. It's in some ways a simple image, but it brilliantly catches the essence of Sherlock and John's relationship. A painting set in stark silhouettes, it shows John's shadow running through the dark and mysterious wood inside of Sherlock. A haunting and beautiful piece.

Fic Rec: The Case of the Fleeing Frenchman

Title: The Case of the Fleeing Frenchman
Author: PenelopeWaits
Pairing: Sherlock Holmes/John Watson, past Sherlock Holmes/OMC
Length: 26,000 words
Rating: E
Warnings: period-typical homophobia and anti-Semitism (the story begins in 19th century France)
Verse: Sherlock BBC, crossover with the myth of the Flying Dutchman and specifically Wagner's opera on the subject
Author's summary: Captain James Watson and his son John have been protecting each other and their beloved Harriet for years. Where will true safety reside when a handsome sailing ship and her haunted captain arrive and he makes a shadowy proposal? This is a crossover with the myth of the Flying Dutchman. John is Senta.

Reccer's comments: I have no familiarity with the Flying Dutchman myth or opera, but it turned out to be a perfect fit with the Sherlock characters. Reminiscent of both Beauty and the Beast & Brigadoon, with ghostly, century-spanning piracy and self-sabotaging love thrown in, this tale is a delight! The author has done a marvelous job of capturing the feel of a small seaside town and the risky lives of fishermen, and they have drawn each of the characters with depth, mixed motives, and originality. Particularly complex is Harry, whose secrets we gradually uncover but who keeps managing to surprise. The John of this story never went to war, but he and Sherlock help each other to win their oldest battles nonetheless.

Sexy, exciting, with heart-felt pining and beautiful action sequences that capture the wonder and danger of sail, this is a gem that I hope you will enjoy as much as I did!

(Editing to add: for those worried about the warnings, or about Wagner, I should add that the author wrote this fic in critique of Wagner's racist attitudes and changed the original story in order to make the injustice of those views a central theme).
Title: The Adventure of the Expert Cracksman
Author: marycrawford
Pairing: gen
Length: 7,000 words
Rating: G
Warnings: none
Verse: ACD Books
Author's summary: Who was Sherlock Holmes before he met Watson?

Reccer's comments: In one of the original Doyle stories, "The Abbey Grange," Holmes confesses to Watson that he sometimes feels he has done more real harm by discovering a criminal than the criminal had ever done by his crime. He says that he has learned to be cautious of too blindly following the law at the cost of his own conscience. It's a wonderful little moment in the stories that implies important, unseen history in Holmes's early crime-fighting days.

This fic fills in that backstory. It gives us a glimpse of a young man, bored and lonely yet determined to make his way as a self-invented consulting detective, who ventures into the society of London thieves. He means only to learn, but he finds himself more emotionally involved in the lives of these criminals than he ever meant to be. He makes certain choices about who to turn over to the law, and who to pass over, and experience teaches him some painful lessons about the consequences both of mistaken severity and of mistaken lenience. The fic acknowledges the harshness of the Victorian justice system, which issued punishments that were in some cases vastly disproportionate to crimes (particularly property crimes). At the same time, it points out the dangers of turning a blind eye to the law for personal motives.

An intriguing character study and an adventure all in one.

Art rec: Someone cleverer than you

Title: Someone cleverer than you
Artist: milkchaos
Pairing: Mycroft Holmes, gen
Rating: G
Warnings: none
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Author's summary: finished a doodle I started on yesterday to calm myself down tbh - and thank you all once again!!

Reccer's comments: Milkchaos has an interesting, mottled style of watercolor, combining gentle, washed-out color and soft lines with very skilled and realistic portraiture. They've done interesting takes on many Sherlock characters, but this painting of Mycroft is my favorite. I love his expression, the slight twist to his mouth, the shadows on his face and chin, and the sharp clarity of his eyes in an otherwise subtly blurred body. It captures a lot about the character, I think.

fic rec: And Silver In Our Lungs

Title: And Silver In Our Lungs
Author: paperclipbitch
Pairing: Irene Adler/Sherlock Holmes, Jamie Moriarty/Sherlock Holmes
Length: 1500
Rating: author said T; I'd call it M for description of sex
Warnings: N/A
Verse: Elementary
Author's summary: The London rain falls like an inevitability, and Irene Adler is waiting for her lover.

Reccer's comments: Um at this point, do I need to warn for season-one spoilers in the comments? I suppose to be safe I'll slip this under a read more. If anyone seeing this hasn't watched s1 and is still unspoiled, I recommend staying that way until you finish it.
Read more...Collapse )
Title: i'm half-doomed, and you're semi-sweet (what a match)
Author: everybodylies
Pairing: Sherlock/Irene, Sherlock/Joan
Length: 6900
Rating: Gen
Warnings: N/A
Verse: Elementary
Author's summary:
The love story of Sherlock Holmes and Joan Watson.

It takes years.

Reccer's comments: Written halfway through season one, this fic is an inadvertent AU in its vision of the course of the relationship between Holmes and Watson, how Irene Adler fits in, and how Moriarty is defeated. There are a few unplanned delights for the reader familiar with all four seasons of the show (as of the time of this rec), from a client's stray comment at the start, "Jamie? Murder somebody?" to the repeated exploration of the ways Joan chooses time and again to stay and Sherlock's shaky efforts to have faith that she will continue to do just that.

mods: can we have a tag for character: holmes' father? [in this case it's not the same as character: Morland Holmes (Elementary), but that tag might be needed eventually too.]

Fic Rec: Cameo

Title: Cameo
Author: what_alchemy
Pairing: Sherlock Holmes/John Watson
Length: 8,300 words
Rating: T
Warnings: period-typical homophobia, some of which is internalized
Verse: ACD
Author's summary: Holmes and Watson become embroiled in a case Scotland Yard refuses to acknowledge. A soulmate AU.

Reccer's comments: I adore magical realism fics set in the ACD universe. Rare though they are, this story shows just how poignant and lovely they can be. It offers an inventive and particularly Victorian variation on the soulmate trope, with the silhouette of one's beloved appearing in a cameo frame imprinted on the skin. This makes it more difficult to hide one's orientation from the prejudices of society, and a violent criminal is taking advantage of that. Holmes and Watson are on the case. But, at its heart, this fic is about years of devoted pining at last finding their tender reward.

Vid Rec: The Bedroom Hymns

Title: The Bedroom Hymns
Music Title & Artist: "Bedroom Hymns" by Florence + the Machine
Vidder: thisismycalling on LJ, gabygal7 on YouTube
Pairing or Character: Sherlock Holmes/John Watson; Sherlock Holmes, John Watson (the vidder says it can be taken as gen or slash)
Verse: Ritchie films
Link: Link to the announcement post on LJ -- (to play the vid, click on the links provided to youtube or mediafire)

Reccer's Comments: The title makes this sound steamy, but it's really more of an action vid with underlying emotion, much like the films themselves. It's wonderfully well-edited and fast paced. As for the music, the sound of this particular band really captures the percussive, wild energy of the Ritchie films. And I love what the vidder has done with some of the lyrics, comparing the ways that Holmes and Watson make sacrifices for one another ("I did this for you") and intercutting the many ways they come together, flesh and blood, in a battle, in a ballroom, and in moments of death and rebirth.

Fic Rec: Mineralogy in Slow Motion

Title: Mineralogy in Slow Motion
Author: Entanglednow
Pairing: Gen
Length: 8,000 words
Rating: G
Warnings: none
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Author's summary: All John wants is somewhere to spend the next few months, while he's blind as a bat. Just the next few months. The doctors were optimistic.

Reccer's comments: Entanglednow was certainly one of the very first authors - if not THE first - I ever read in the Sherlock fandom, and I continue to be impressed with the wonderful and offbeat stories they write. Their work is always skillful, creative, and intriguing. This story introduces us to a version of Sherlock who comes with new secrets attached, secrets which some readers will surely guess quite early on while others will be surprised when the reveal comes. I won't say anything to spoil it, only that this is very much an AU and that Sherlock is, as usual, the real mystery. And John, although blind, sees everything that really matters.

fic rec: a thousand roads

Title: a thousand roads
Author: Medie
Pairing: Gen
Length: 750 words
Rating: Gen
Warnings: N/A
Verse: Elementary
Author's summary: Mille viae ducunt homines per saecula Romam (A thousand roads lead men forever to Rome) - this is just the latest one by which Watson meets Sherlock.

Reccer's comments: One of the things I envy most about Sherlock BBC fic is the sheer abundance of AUs, alternate origins, and all sorts of reimaginings based on the version of the characters and stories presented in that show. Elementary has very little of that, partly due to having significantly less fic in general. My sense is that even normalizing by volume, there's still more of this sort of play in BBC fic, though I haven't ever tried to calculate it or figure out why. That said, there is one pocket where a version of this alternate Elementary can be found: the fic written before the show actually aired.

This story is the earliest one posted to AO3 for Elementary, shortly after the announcement that CBS had ordered the pilot and the only thing known was that it took place in New York and Lucy Liu was cast as Watson. It offers a Joan Watson who was born in London, transplanted to New York as a child, and grew up to join the Marines in part as a way to pay for her medical education. From there it moves quickly through the trials of injury and financial hardship and ends at the beginning, the first meeting between Dr. Watson and a somewhat-worse-for-wear Sherlock Holmes.

Art Rec: Not your housekeeper, dear!

Title: Not your housekeeper, dear!
Artist: wisesnail
Pairing: Gen
Rating: G
Warnings: none
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Author's summary: “Not your housekeeper, dear!” <3 I love Una Stubbs’ Mrs Hudson!

Reccer's comments: This is such a wonderful portrait of Mrs. Hudson. I love the bright pinks and reds and purples streaming up and around her, and that near-smile peeking out as she rests her head on her hand in a relaxed, insouciant pose. Her bright spirit, warmth, and humor shine through here.

Fic Rec: Obscurity

Title: Obscurity
Author: UrbanHymnal
Pairing: Sherlock/John
Length: 7,700 words
Rating: T
Warnings: none
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Author's summary: Because words were magic, because they only would come out when they had the right feel and sound, he couldn’t say simple things like: Dad, leave Harry alone for once or Hey, Amy, do you fancy coming out to dinner with me?

Reccer's comments: In this story, John Watson can only speak in the form of quotation; his only words are those drawn from books he has read that have meant something important to him. While a lovely example of magical realism, this is also close enough to real speech disabilities to carry the ring of authenticity. John's banked anger, his frustration at being dismissed as unintelligent because he cannot easily express his thoughts, his resentment at a world that makes no time for him, are powerfully and persuasively realized. In Sherlock, he finally finds someone who learns to bridge the communicative and emotional gap -- someone who sees him for who he is.

On another level, the story is a celebration of books and of the way we sometimes find our own thoughts or feelings revealed through other people's words. The fic makes use of quotes from a number of well-known works of literature, some of which I recognized and some of which I didn't (the author gives a list of attributions at the end of the story). John's patchwork method of communication is often quite beautiful, and several passages between him and Sherlock are uniquely romantic.

This is a story that I have come back to repeatedly over the last few years. When I first read it, I didn't know that my child would have a speech disability reminiscent of John's. Now that I do know, this fic is even more special to me. I love its celebration of language and silence, reading and listening, translation and learning, and all the amazing people who occupy unusual spaces in the realms of expression.

Here we go gathering nuts in May

Welcome to our reccers for May, rachelindeed and amindamazed. We look forward to your recs.

Thanks to our April reccers: tripleransom and dioscureantwins! You did a great job.

Sign-ups are open for reccers for June, or any later month. You only need to make four recs a month, for works created for any version of Sherlock Holmes, as fic, art, vids, podfic, or meta.  Sign up here!  Info and Guidelines here.  We want to keep this community active for as long as volunteers are interested in making recs.

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Art rec: Anniversary

Title: Anniversary
Artist: numberthescars
Pairing: none
Rating: G
Warnings: none
Verse: Granada

Reccer's comments: This is more than just one picture - it's more like a series of illustrations with a story attached. It will load slowly; give it time, so you can see and appreciate the whole thing as it unfolds before you. It's poignant and sad and it illustrates the relationships between Holmes and Watson (and Mary) in the Granada series perfectly. It's really lovely!

Fic Rec: Tea In the Sahara

Title: Tea In The Sahara
Author: fleetwood_mouse
Pairing: Mary Morstan/John Watson, Mary Morstan/John Watson/Sherlock Holmes
Length: 13,400
Rating: None given R?
Warnings: none
Verse: Ritchie Films

Author's summary: Mary Morstan sees more than she is given credit for, and she has been watching for a long time. This is the story of how she gets John Watson to stop waiting and take what he wants: Sherlock Holmes.

Reccer's comments: I sense a theme in my recs for this month. I didn't love Mary in the films, but I love what fanficcers have done with her. She's just the sort of smart, tough, and funny kind of woman Watson would have fallen for (and Holmes, too!). She is no pliable Victorian lady in this fic as she schemes to get the three of them together. The dialog is great, the voices perfectly in character. It's a definite treat.
It was posted in 2 parts on Holmistice and there's no link for part 2 - just go back up to the top and hit 'next day', or read it on the AO3 here: Tea in the Sahara

Fic Rec : The Glass Half Full

Title: The Glass Half Full http://archiveofourown.org/works/1115835
Author: garonne
Pairing: Watson/Mary, Holmes/Watson
Length: 2500 words
Rating: G
Warnings: none
Verse: ACD Books

Author's summary: Nothing but unspoken words and unspent passions, declarations never made and caresses never given.
Holmes and Mary Watson have an after-dinner conversation about Watson.

Reccer's comments: This is a 'small' fic, but one in which a great deal goes on, despite the constrained setting. It's beautifully and economically written. There is no action, no train rides, no clients falling headlong on the carpet; even Watson is absent for most of it. It only covers a little space of time, just an after-dinner conversation between Holmes and Mary Watson. Not much is really said, but afterwards they understand each other a great deal better. Nothing is resolved, the ending is bittersweet; as the author says, with "unspoken words and unspent passions". Of course, we know as the characters do not, that there will be a resolution eventually - and one that they do not expect and cannot anticipate, which serves to make their situation all the more poignant.
Title: The Glass Half Full http://archiveofourown.org/works/1115835
Author: garonne
Pairing: Watson/Mary, Holmes/Watson
Length: 2500 words
Rating: G
Warnings: none
Verse: ACD Books

Author's summary: Nothing but unspoken words and unspent passions, declarations never made and caresses never given.
Holmes and Mary Watson have an after-dinner conversation about Watson.

Reccer's comments: This is a 'small' fic, but one in which a great deal goes on, despite the constrained setting. There is no action, no train rides, no clients falling headlong on the carpet; even Watson is absent for most of it. It only covers a little space of time, just an after-dinner conversation between Holmes and Mary Watson. Not much is really said, but afterwards they understand each other a great deal better. Nothing is resolved, the ending is bittersweet; as the author says, with "unspoken words and unspent passions". But of course, we know as the characters do not, that there will be a resolution eventually - and one that they do not expect and cannot anticipate, which serves to make their situation all the more poignant.

Fic Rec: Things On Fire, Things That Fall

Title: Things on Fire, Things that Fall
Author: verilyvexed
Pairing: Holmes/Watson
Length: 17,995
Rating: R
Warnings: none
Verse: Ritchie films
Author's summary: "We have visitors, Watson. Two of them. Women, unless I am mistaken, and one of them is wearing either new shoes or very uncomfortable old ones."
(That's a rather dreadful summary, isn't it? My apologies. Watson gets dragged into assisting with a case, then later gets dragged out of the Thames. No, that's not quite right either. Erm... there's banter, arguing, injuries, and awkward confessions over a dead body.
Reccer's comments: This fic is absolutely the most perfect movieverse settiing I've ever read. The dialog is fantastically spot on. You simply cannot read it without seeing Jude Law and RDJ speaking the lines. They bicker, they kiss. Watson is tied up in a warehouse by the docks. Holmes rescues him. As the warehouse burns, they jump out a window into the Thames. Finally the case is solved in a highly satisfactory fashion. The story unfolds exactly like a movie script. Even Mary, although she doesn't actually appear in the story, acts in perfect accord with her movieverse character. What more could you ask for?
If you liked the movies, you will love this one.
Also on the AO3 http://archiveofourown.org/works/253880

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