The doujinshi is self published and around 116 pages in graphic novel form. The volume is nicely presented, but I’ve been a nerd and kept it in a comic bag as the cover is reasonably soft card.
The story is essentially unchanged from the original novel, but the accompanying art work is Yayoi Nekos own unique vision. She has portrayed Holmes and Watson as having a warm and obviously sexual relationship and while there is a decided lack of gratuitous sex in the novel, it fits perfectly within the bounds of the story and the time period. Definitely more shounen-ai than hard core yaoi. The emotion and sensuality that is expressed through the panels mean that you don’t particularly miss far flung bodily fluids and the eroticism that is conveyed is incredibly sensual, whilst still leaving some details to the imagination.
The backgrounds, cityscapes and interiors are particularly cool and this attention to detail makes the story more robust and rich. I really like the characters faces and the artists ability with expression. So much of the story is conveyed not just with deft attention to body and position, but subtle facial expression and gestures. Her characters are distinct with crisp facial characteristics, and I must say this makes Holmes all the more vivid as she has captured his clever, sharp features perfectly. Watson is lithe and rather handsome, but his features seemed softer than the austereness of Holmes. There is a great blend of action and more erotic moments and the pacing of the story through the panels is tight.
I think what I found really cool is the whole re-interpretation of a classic novel. While the artist does already have a well turned story to work with, it is her own interpretation of events, sense of humor and beautiful artwork that makes this come alive. This was an excellent read and has become one of my favorite purchases this year.