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Ann K. McClellan

Sherlock’s World

Fan Fiction and the Reimagining of BBC’s Sherlock

University of Iowa Press 2018

New Books in Arts & LettersNew Books in CommunicationsNew Books in Literary StudiesNew Books in Politics & SocietyNew Books in Popular CultureNew Books in SociologyNew Books Network November 25, 2019 Rebekah Buchanan

In Sherlock’s World: Fan Fiction and the Reimagining of BBC’s Sherlock (University of Iowa Press, 2018), Ann K. McClellan explores fan fiction inspired by...

In Sherlock’s World: Fan Fiction and the Reimagining of BBC’s Sherlock (University of Iowa Press, 2018), Ann K. McClellan explores fan fiction inspired by one of the most-watch BBC series in history. Even after 130 years, Sherlock Holmes is still one of the most popular detectives ever to appear in print and on the screen. The recent BBC series Sherlock, set in modern-day London, brings Sherlock, John Watson, and other characters and events from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s nineteenth-century London to a new group of fans. The series has inspired a large fan following across the globe, and with it fan fiction that continues to reimagine the characters beyond their lives in London.

McClellan examines the series through the lenses of fan fiction studies, genre studies, and world building. Grounding the recent series and fandom in the larger historical fandom culture of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s popular detective, McClellan deftly presents how fan culture has evolved throughout the past century. Focusing on fan fiction, Sherlock’s World presents the ways that fans both change the canon as well as establish its position as the source text for their work. McClellan focuses on slash, world building, alternate universe, and real person fiction fan fiction as ways to explore how fans have pushed the boundaries of genre, character, canon, and reality.


Rebekah Buchanan is an Associate Professor of English at Western Illinois University. She researches zines, zine writers and the influence of music subcultures and fandom on writers and narratives. She is the author of Writing a Riot: Riot Grrrl Zines and Feminist Rhetorics (Peter Lang, 2018). You can find more about her on her website, follow her on Twitter @rj_buchanan or email her at rj-buchanan@wiu.edu.