Famous for creating the inimitable Sherlock Holmes, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's own life was as fascinating as any of his crime stories. Yet the fictional detective overshadowed Conan Doyle's other achievements, from serving as a medic in the Boer War to pioneering skiing. In many ways the typical British gentleman - bluff, patriotic and sporty - Conan Doyle was not afraid of controversy, whether campaigning against atrocities in the Congo, for reform of the Divorce Law or against miscarriages of justice. Perhaps most surprising was his obsession with spiritualism and the paranormal. What led the creator of the practical, scientific Holmes to spend years trying to reach the 'other side'? Daniel Stashower's award-winning biography presents a rounded portrait of the complexities and contradictions of this extraordinary genius.