swissmarg: Mrs Hudson (Default)
[personal profile] swissmarg
Title: A Real Deal
Author: toyhto
Pairing: Sherlock Holmes/John Watson
Length: 10K
Rating: Mature
Warnings: Major character death
Verse: BBC
Author's summary: Please be real, he thought and pulled Sherlock closer.

Reccer's comments:  I’m honestly not sure whether I’m more horrified or comforted by the direction this fic went. It takes a huge detour off the beaten path and tries to answer the question: Is it better to have loved and lost, or never to have loved at all… or maybe there is a third option? One that will get under your skin and stick with you.
swissmarg: Mrs Hudson (Default)
[personal profile] swissmarg
Title: S4 AU (link goes to tumblr)
Author: johnlockiseternal
Pairing: Sherlock Holmes/John Watson
Length: 17 tumblr posts
Rating: Not rated, contains 1 NSFW gif
Warnings: None
Verse: BBC
Author's summary: AU where S4 doesn’t happen at all, Sherlock hallucinates everything after Mary shoots him.

Reccer's comments: I'm not sure if there's a name for this kind of thing, but this is a story told through gifs of the series (plus a couple from other sources), with the author inserting their own subtitles. It's kind of a cross between a vid and a fic. It's short and sweet, but manages to pack in the full range of emotion, from the stomach swoops of flirty texting, loin-tingling teases of a consummation many years in the making, to a heart-in-throat confrontation and the heartfelt sighs of a happy ending. And all rendered in slick, high quality gifs with in-character dialogue. It's cute, sassy, sweet, and just great fun.

Editing to add: There is now a 1:25-minute fanvid version.

[identity profile]
Title: Albion and the Woodsman
Author: Glenmore
Pairing: Sherlock/John
Length: 54,437 words
Rating: Not Rated (I would rate it Mature)
Warnings: None
Verse: Sherlock BBC

Author's summary: Post Series 3. Sherlock and John are devastated after Mary Morstan makes her final moves. Sherlock relapses at the crack house, John walks around the world ...and a lot happens in between. Parentlock, in the good way.

Reccer's comments: If you are the type of reader who, like me, generally avoids first-person storytelling, then do yourself a favor and make an exception for this one. It's one of those rare fics that successfully paints Sherlock Holmes as a devoted single parent. The story is in turns funny, heartbreaking, and heartwarming.

It is told from Sherlock's POV, and begins post-series 3. It starts out after Sherlock has been shot for a second time by Mary Watson, an event that leads to her arrest and to John needing to disappear for awhile in order to get his head together. He leaves for a year-long walkabout around the world, leaving Sherlock devastated and returning to drugs. Of course he cleans himself up, only to be confronted several months later by a pregnant stranger claiming that Sherlock is the father.

We get to watch Sherlock fall immediately in love with his son Albion, and then take to single fatherhood like a duck takes to water. As Sherlock grows into his new role, he continues to pine for John and wait for his eventual return. The way Sherlock refers to John in his absence by different epithets such as 'eleven jumpers Watson' and 'Three pairs of brogues Watson' kept me delighted and laughing throughout.

We are introduced to several OC’s, not the least of which is Albion himself. His nanny gives soldier!John a run for his money (once he returns), and even the mother who abandoned him manages to turn her life around and gain at least a smidgen of our respect.

There are struggles and lessons to be learned, not the least of which that 'happily ever after' does not mean what all the fairy-tales claim. Reality is much more complicated, but all the more rewarding because of it.

sneak preview )
[identity profile]
Title: Look west from London
Author: fahye
Pairing: Molly Hooper, Sherlock Holmes/John Watson
Length: 4500 words
Rating: Teen
Warnings: none
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Author's summary: There are almost no lies in the way that Molly presents herself, only omissions.

Reccer's comments: *deep breath* Okay. This is the most quietly horrifying and heartbreaking story in this fandom that I have ever managed to read and admire. I am generally a wimp, but this story is so perfectly crafted that I was willing to let it haunt me. A supernatural variation on the Reichenbach Fall in which Molly remains the key to arranging Sherlock's resurrection, though at a terrible price. Written with complexity, clarity, and stark emotion, this fic hits hard. The ending hurts, but the whole is darkly beautiful.
[identity profile]
Title: The Serpent's Gift
Author: [ profile] snarryfool / ancientreader
Pairing: Sherlock Holmes/John Watson
Length: 5,300 words
Rating: T
Warnings: none
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Author's summary: A wounded soldier dreams of the Wild Hunt. Written for the 2016 Spook Me! ficathon, for the creature prompt "beast."

Reccer's comments: Ancientreader writes such beautiful, polished prose that her works are always stunning compositions. This most recent fairy tale taps into old European legends to weave a series of lyrical, dream-like encounters that hold onto their atmosphere of mystery even while gradually escalating toward emotional clarity. John, wounded and feverish, finds himself at the border of an unknown road in a foreign reality, watching a demon hunt of hellhounds and dark riders as they pursue both beast and man. Being John, he instinctively and fearlessly intercedes. But what will it really take to save Sherlock from the hunt? A spell-binding Halloween fable.
[identity profile]
Title: The Shawl of Sherlock Holmes
Author: [ profile] luchia13
Pairing: Gen
Length: 2,000 words
Rating: PG
Warnings: none
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Author's summary: John's a Weaver, capable of channeling the abstract into fabric. After meeting Sherlock, his abilities are put to the test more than ever.

Reccer's comments: This is a beautiful and haunting magical realism fic that always carries the feeling of October for me. It's about a special kind of witchcraft woven with thread and intention, and the way John tries to heal and protect with sometimes reckless abandon. I love the way the story cleverly plays with details of the BBC series, like Sherlock's scarf and John's endless jumpers. Written in 2011 before the second series aired, it diverges quickly from what has since become canon, but it maintains a perfect, understated grasp of the main characters and the depth of their concern for each other. I love this fic for its prose, its imagination, and its delightful mixture of melancholy and warmth.
[identity profile]
Title: The Case of the Green Gown
Author: [ profile] splix
Pairing: Sherlock/John, John/Mary
Length: about 209,000 words
Rating: explicit
Warnings: graphic depictions of violence, torture
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Author's summary: ...Watson had at that time deserted me for a wife, the only selfish action which I can recall in our association. I was alone.
---Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, The Adventure of the Blanched Soldier

Reccer's comments: Wow, [ profile] splix has done it again! Enriched the Sherlock fandom with a marvellously clever story, literally hefty in almost every sense of the word.

Make sure you’ll have nothing important on for the next few days when you start reading this for you’ll be hooked and oblivious to the demands of reality. You’ll find yourself laughing and cheering, and grappling with the most horrendous angst, swearing and recovering from punches that go straight for the solar plexus and sobbing. Oh, there’s so much delicious bittersweet sobbing in this fic.

Then there’s the great characterisation throughout. All the well-known players completely IC there’s a whole array of fascinating OC’s. As usual everything is written in that exquisite language that’s this author’s special trademark.

Apart from an incredibly tightly plotted casefic that contains more than enough intrigue to fill at least two seasons of Sherlock this is a wonderfully crafted psychological study of the human condition and all those feelings that shape us into what we are: love, friendship, grief, greed, jealousy. Greatness and despicable flaws, both are shown in every character. And throughout it all both Holmes brothers suffer so nobly. After all, no one is better aware than they are that caring isn’t an advantage.

After the havoc Moftiss wreaked with S3 this fic helped me to recover my love for Sherlock the series, even long before Moftiss made it all better again with TAB. Everyone who has got huge problems with Mary should read this fic just to admire the nuanced approach to her personage. In this fic I often loathed her, despised her and really, really didn’t like her but throughout [ profile] splix managed to make me sympathise with her plight. After all, Sherlock returning from the dead wasn’t exactly what she had bargained for.

But what’s the fic about? That I’m not going to tell for I don’t want to spoil your fun. Just start reading like I did and be mesmerised and enchanted like I was. You won’t be disappointed.

Highly, highly recommended!
[identity profile]
Author: theshopislocal
Pairing: Sherlock/John, John/OMC, John/Mary
Length: 31,750 words
Rating: Mature
Warnings: Canon-typical violence
Verse: Sherlock BBC

Author's summary: He turns back round then and looks down at me, eyes curious. “Your name, W.S.S. Holmes.” That’s not my name. “Is it Walter? Or Wilbur? Maybe something really awful like, er,” he smiles wryly, “Willoughby? Winchester?”

I feel my face go blank as my body numbs over. “Scott,” I say, voice devoid of emotion. “My name is Scott.”

Reccer's comments: Wow does this story pack a punch. It has a unique writing style that I haven't run across before that is very effective and emotionally harrowing. Filled with clever twists, it'll keep you guessing as to what is what (and who is who) until the very last chapter. Out of all of the outstanding fics to come out of the most recent round of Holmestice, this is one of the most memorable for me.

It's a bit difficult giving a rec for this without giving too much away, but I will do my best. The story takes place post-Reichenbach, and is not series 3 compliant. It has all of the angst one comes to expect from such a fic, along with offering its own unique twist to it. Someone is kidnapped off the streets of London - someone who the kidnapper thinks is the 'deceased' Sherlock Holmes. The story is told in first person, mostly from the kidnapped person's perspective. The narrative is non-linear, so we also see scenes from Mycroft's POV as he and Sherlock plot to bring down Sebastian Moran. Mary also has a role here, albeit offscreen.

The scenes between the kidnapped person and the kidnapper are at the crux of the story, emotionally intense and done in such a clever way that I was not completely convinced of the identify of either one of them until the grand reveal. The emotion coupled with heartstopping action left me on the edge of my seat the entire time. This is the type of story that I live for, and that will remain with me for a long time.

A possible trigger warning: there is a death of an unborn child, although it does take place offscreen.

Here is an excerpt from the very beginning of the story to give you a taste of the experience you are in for:

Sneak Peek )
[identity profile]
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.
[identity profile]
Title: Game Theory
Author: 7PercentSolution
Pairing: none
Length: approx. 246,800 words
Rating: Teenage
Warnings: attempted rape/non-con
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Author's summary: Set between The Great Game and The Scandal in Belgravia, both Sherlock and John have to deal with the collateral emotional damage that comes after Moriarty's pool-side revelation that their relationship was a weakness that could, and would, be exploited. Mycroft Holmes meddles, as usual, and it all goes to hell rather quickly.

Reccer's comments: You’ll need to accept the author’s clever arguments for her explanation for Sherlock’s often appalling behaviour but if you’re willing to accept that this series will have you in for hours of glorious reading.

The author’s take on the characters is flawless, her exploit of and explanations for the constant sibling warfare very convincing and the often gripping angst is relieved by bouts of welcome humour and wonderfully warm friendshippy feels. The dialogue is spot on.

Told from John’s POV the author manages to convey that constant sense of wonder and admiration that pervaded ASiP, TBB and TGG so gloriously. Meet Sherlock Holmes, marvel extraordinaire and weep for him. Even though he’ll scorn you for it.

Revealing anything of the plot would be a huge spoiler that would take away all your fun. You’ll just have to read this wonderful fic yourself to find out how clever it is. Really, the author could give Moftiss a run for their money.
[identity profile]
Title: Where is my chair? & Where is my scarf?
Artist: trururu-matthew
Pairing: Sherlock/John
Length: 2 pages
Rating: G & NC-17
Warnings: None
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Author's summary:
)))) [<---These are Russian smilies... took me a while to figure them out, lol]

Reccer's comments:
I'm posting a pair of comic strips by the same author this time, since they are both very short. The first, Where is my chair? is an adorably angsty hurt/comfort tale set after TSOT. And Where is my scarf? is naughty, silly, and sweet. The artist is Russian and a translation for the first comic is included in the artist's comments below the image. This guy has a wonderful, and frequently dirty, sense of humour, as well as a very mature and elegant cartooning style. I'm particularly fond of his Sheriarty!

Where is my chair? (G)

Where is my scarf? (NC-17)

(P.S. I just renamed my account so it matches my other screennames. Same person!)
verdant_fire: (shr: it's all fine)
[personal profile] verdant_fire
Title: History, Repeating Itself
Author: gyzym
Pairing: Sherlock/John, Mycroft/Irene
Length: 45489 words
Rating: Mature
Verse: BBC
Author's summary: John Watson is a med student, a war veteran, and, by and large, a fairly sensible person. He had every chance to run.

Reccer's comments: Perhaps fittingly for Leap Day, this fic is a bit of an odd one, but I've never forgotten it.  Though it's tagged as RDJ-verse, I think it's really more of an original fic based on ACD's characters than it is any established verse, but it's fantastic writing no matter how you categorize it.  This is a sort of Unilock, with John and Sherlock meeting as post-grads and moving in together while Sherlock does a lot of chemistry and gets in over his head, both professionally and romantically.  Mycroft and Irene are also great in this, even though, again, they're not really the ACD characters but an original version of them.  John's long-suffering affection and pining over his manic, stoner, genius Sherlock is really well-written, and Sherlock is both endearing and exasperating (and also instigates one of the best Johnlock clubbing scenes I've read).  It's an engaging and unique take on them and their relationship.
[identity profile]
Title: Alpha-Alpha Etiquette
Author: berlynn_wohl
Pairing: Sherlock/John
Length: 5771 words
Rating: Explicit
Warnings: None
Verse: BBC
Author's summary: “I can’t control it,” Sherlock said. “Just hold your hand still, and it will let you go.”

Reccer's comments: From 2012, early Sherlock omegaverse. The one with the tentacle.

A snappy, efficient, dense and colorful romp. No one writes tentacles or road rash or John and Sherlock quite like berlynn_wohl.
[identity profile]
Title: Order of Operations
Author: patternofdefiance
Pairing: Gen, pre-slash Sherlock/John
Length: 2,839 words
Rating: Teen
Warnings: none
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Author's summary:
Emergency lights flicker on.
Never a good sign.
John opens his eyes. Smoke, hazy air, smells sour, concrete dust. Not the desert. City. Insurgent bombings. Civilians. Casualties.

Reccer's comments: Sherlock and John are trapped in an elevator after a terrorist attack at Mycroft’s building. I don't feel like i'm giving anything away when I say they make it out, but not without some heartstopping moments. (ETA: No one dies in this!) The intensity is sky high as Sherlock and John fight to escape and the author does not hold back in showing us just how precarious their situation is, physically and emotionally. Each of them is almost primal in how they make the other's escape their main priority. It's a thrilling read with a great heaping dose of hurt/comfort in the end.

The author has tagged this both gen and pre-slash, so you could read this with either intense friendship or slash goggles on. Either way, it's not a disappointment. This is a fantastic look at Sherlock and John's deep friendship and just how much they really mean to each other. I will never get tired of coming back to this story.
swissmarg: Mrs Hudson (Molly)
[personal profile] swissmarg

Title: Sherlock: The Story of Redbeard
Music Title & Artist: None (voiceovers and background soundtracks only)
Vidder: beautifullytragic6
Pairing or Character: Sherlock Holmes, 'the other one', additional cast (Gen)
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Link: Vidder's announcement on tumblr
Vidder's Summary: This was partly inspired by a tumblr post I read the other day! The gist is that "Redbeard" is in fact Mycroft and Sherlock's older brother.

Reccer's Comments: Sorry for posting 2 recs in one day but I just watched this and cannot wait to share it! To put a twist on an old saying, I think this vidder could probably make a video of a phone book and I’d beg for more. This is far from a phone book, though. This is a gut-wrenching, high-tension, expertly edited work of art that in all honesty is probably better than whatever the writers on the real show will do with Redbeard. This is based on a fan theory (you can see it here, by @wellthengameover) that in itself is highly seductive and that’s what makes this fanvid even more exceptional for me, because the creator has basically brought someone else’s vision to life, gone out and found footage from several other sources – including Amanda Abbington in Cuffs, which is super awesome and the first time I’ve seen Cuffs used in a Sherlock fanvid – and made it one step closer to reality. Even if it turns out that Redbeard really was just a dog, and is never mentioned again, that doesn’t matter because we have this, we have the entire story here, and it is beautiful and emotional and real.

[identity profile]
Title: Beneath These Skies
Author: bendingsignpost
Pairing: Sherlock Holmes, John Watson, Molly Hooper, Bill Murray, Mike Stamford; gen
Length: 37,000 words
Rating: M (for violence and themes)
Warnings: references to past rape, trafficking, and torture, depictions of attempted genocide
Verse: Sherlock BBC, fusion with Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance/Radiant Dawn
Author's summary: An ex-soldier-turned-healer, a priest, and an unhorsed knight flee for their lives after the invasion of their homeland. John didn't expect the road to safety to be easy, but the addition of a petite mage and a scowling former prisoner to their small band opens his eyes to horrors beyond imagining.

Reccer's comments: Bendingsignpost is one of my favorite BBC Sherlock authors. He excels at layered world-building, subtle characterization, well-paced reveals, and powerful prose. His John POV is among the best in the fandom, in my opinion, and I particularly appreciate the way he keeps the characters' emotional expressions trimmed down and indirect without reducing their profundity.

Though basically all his stories are widely read, in comparison to his other works this one has been relatively overlooked. I imagine there may be several reasons for this. It is gen. It is a fusion with a video game universe. And it has some serious warnings attached. But, although it is at times a grim story that deals with very dark subjects, pretty much all of the most disturbing themes are dealt with indirectly through implication and we only glimpse the aftermath. I found it much less harrowing to read than I had initially feared. The elements taken from the video game are a constellation of magical creatures and a political setup for war; to me it simply read like magical realism and my unfamiliarity with "Fire Emblem" was no obstacle at all to my immersion into the story, the political, natural, and supernatural contours of which Ben sketches with great skill.

A romance in the context of this story would have been inappropriate given the level of trauma Sherlock is dealing with, but the power of the relationship he forms with John is striking -- their mutual trust grows quickly, they work well improvising together in the midst of danger, and they wind up protecting each other and making sacrifices to save each other in ways that pay tribute to the depth of their connection. In addition to the lovely character work done on its two protagonists, this story reaches further to examine the ambiguities of warfare, where basically decent people can find themselves in the ranks of an army bent on atrocity, and where even justified battles for self-defense can descend into indiscriminate slaughter. A compelling, imaginative, well-grounded story that leavens its sadness with touches of humor and the healing that comes through friendship and loyalty.
[identity profile]
Title: Everybody Knows
Author: Susan
Pairing: Sherlock/John
Length: 44488 words
Rating: Explicit
Warnings: None
Verse: Sherlock BBC

Author's summary: As if John and Sherlock don't have enough problems already (that whole Sherlock getting shot by Mary thing), now there's a cold case detective from Canada snooping around asking questions about Moriarty.

Kate took her time, wanting to give him time to get settled. When she returned, John had cleared away the tea and Sherlock was sitting in the leather chair wearing sweat pants and a faded white t-shirt under a blue silk bathrobe.

She didn’t know men still wore silk bathrobes.

Thinner than his pictures, paler too. All cheekbones and unruly dark hair. Blue eyes dulled by the pain meds. Needs to shave. Bare feet. Holds one arm against his chest. Like he’s literally trying to hold himself together. Is he aware that he’s doing that?

Reccer's comments: Apologies for my absence this month, time has gotten away from me! I offer up this story by the same author who gave us the brilliant Skip Code. It takes place during HLV and beyond, mostly during that missing gap between Sherlock being shot and Christmas at the Holmes's. It manages to be a Series 3 fix-it fic while also remaining completely canon compliant. It's a testament to the author's skill that they manage to do this in a believable and satisfying manner.

This story is set apart from other fix-it fics by the inclusion of a fascinating female OC, Kate, a character who has her own relationship issues that she's juggling as she gets caught up in a cold case that somehow has to do with Moriarty. We mostly see the Sherlock and John relationship through her eyes, when she shows up at 221B to interview Sherlock - who is still recovering from the gunshot wound that Mary gave him.

There are so many twists and turns in this story; every time clues seem to point in a certain direction, new evidence pops up that indicates something else entirely. How Moriarty and Mary are linked, if there even is a link... if Mary's baby is John's or someone else's... and Kate has her own personal mystery she's trying to solve at the same time. And through it all, John's love for Sherlock is obvious and yet he's still emotionally tied to the idea of wife/marriage/baby.

A brilliant read!
[identity profile]
Title: A Point Subtly Made
Author: iguana_dog
Pairing: Sherlock Holmes/John Watson
Length: 6,386
Rating: R
Warnings: none
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Author's summary: John can't help noticing that Sherlock has gotten decidedly more 'handsy' over the period of time they've known one another, and he wonders whether this might mean something and Sherlock is simply too shy to come out and say it. But, Sherlock, shy? No, that's surely a foolish idea, isn't it?
Reccer's comments: I don't always read fics hosted on LJ, but when I do they are awesome. The relationship and characterizations shown in this story are achingly real. We see John and Sherlock in times of quiet, excitement, and near death, and their responses are very true to character, I think. In additon to that, the sequence of events feels very natural; I love the way each piece of the story flows into the next.
[identity profile]
Title: Coins on my Eyes
Author: indybaggins
Pairing: Sherlock/John, Sherlock & Mycroft
Length: 35,000
Rating: M
Warnings: Graphic depictions of violence
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Author's summary: 'Sherlock spent nights lying awake, listening to the rustling of John’s hands on the bedcovers. The dull thumps of John’s head against the headboard. The rhythmic grinding of his teeth. The soft, hungry sounds of his mouth and throat.'

There is an unknown infection rapidly spreading through London, fear, unspoken love, dead who cannot die... and a way for them to come back. Post-zombie AU!

Reccer's comments:

This fic was one of the highlights of my summer. The writing is stellar, the characterizations nuanced, the relationships breath-taking, the moral conundrums complex, and the setting horrifying. The story shifts perspective between its main characters as it follows the devastating progress of an incurable disease. Mycroft's perspective is insightfully rendered as he adopts ruthless measures to stem the spread of the plague while at the same time reluctantly supporting Sherlock's attempts to cure John after he seems long lost to infection.

This story portrays the deeply generous love between Sherlock and John, and Sherlock and Mycroft, without ever slipping into sentimentality. Its central characters move and breathe with extraordinary detail and emotional integrity. The intense crises they each face bring out the core qualities of their personalities. I think it's an amazing piece of work.

(Possible warnings: this fic deals with end of life issues and caregiving for debilitated loved ones; it portrays suicidal ideation and mentions suicide and euthanasia; it also contains some imagery that is reminiscent of the Holocaust.)
[identity profile]
Title: Seek Out the Unworthy
Author: squire
Pairing: none
Length: approx. 44,100 words
Rating: teen and up
Warnings: none
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Author's summary: Set after the events of His Last Vow - but this time, the plane carrying Sherlock off to Eastern Europe never turned around, and John's life is very different as a result.

Reccer's comments: A fast and furious thriller that will keep you perched on the edge of your seat while reading.

John and Mary are firmly settled in suburban life. Every now and then John worries faintly because Sherlock has completely disappeared from the radar. Mycroft, as ever, is extremely unhelpful.

Then John’s life takes an unexpected turn and in less than twenty-four hours he finds himself on the continent, running for his life together with Mary. They end up in Eastern Europe and there he finds Sherlock, horribly changed and apparently having sold his soul to Moriarty, or worse…

With the Holmes brothers however, nothing ever is what it seems to be.


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