Reading progress update: I've read 11 out of 192 pages.

Arthur Conan Doyle: Beyond Sherlock Holmes - Andrew Norman

This is not off to a good start.

 

The Preface seems to say that Norman's focus in this biography will be to explore what motivated a reasonable, logical fellow to believe in spiritualism and fairies.

 

I was hoping for a relatively objective biography that would explore different areas of ACD's life - he was an interesting person!

 

And then I got the last paragraph of the Preface!

"My investigations led me to conclude that Doyle's father had suffered not only from alcoholism and epilepsy, as has previously been described, but more importantly from a serious mental illness. Not only that, but this illness was itself a hereditable disease, in other words, one which Charles may have handed down to his son via the genes. Suddenly I realised that I now had an opportunity to solve what I consider to be the ultimate mystery, that of the bizarre and extraordinary nature of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle himself."

This is just bad. And this is the Preface!!!

 

This may end up being one of the fastest DNF's in the history of my reading (although, nothing will beat the English translation of Olivier Todd's biography of Albert Camus that sucked so much that I had to abandon it at the Translator's Note.)