Isn't Sir Henry just charming and awesome? And has any character ever been described as "pugnacious" who does not turn out to be delightful? And determined. Though I have to wonder... Sir Henry says "[t]here is no devil in hell, Mr. Holmes, and there is no man upon earth who can prevent me from going to the home of my own people" (p. 600). And yet he's been living in Canada all this time? Hmm.
We get to see Holmes fail at something here. Have I ever mentioned that I love that the canon Holmes is fallible? He doesn't always solve the case, he doesn't always capture the villain. He doesn't always catch his quarry. And when he fails, he's so hard on himself. Makes him feel so real and human! Here's our Possible Discussion Question: Do you think there's a reason Doyle has Holmes fail here, other than to keep us from learning the identity of the bearded gentleman?
"I seem to have walked right into the thick of a dime novel" (p. 598).
"I think anything out of the ordinary routine of life well worth reporting" (p. 598).