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The Return of Sherlock Holmes is a collection of 13 Sherlock Holmes stories, originally published in 1903-1904, by Arthur Conan Doyle. The book was first published on 7 March 1905 by Georges Newnes, Ltd and in a Colonial edition by Longmans. 30,000 copies were made of the initial print run. The US edition by McClure, Phillips & Co. added another 28,000 copies to the run.
This was the first Holmes collection since 1893, when Holmes had "died" in "The Adventure of the Final Problem". Having published The Hound of the Baskervilles in 1901–1902 (although setting it before Holmes' death) Doyle came under intense pressure to revive his famous character.
This collection contains stories set from 1894, giving Holmes the period from 1891-94 to explain - "The Great Hiatus" has been the subject of intense speculation and analysis by Sherlockian enthusiasts. Also of note is Watson's statement at the end of the cycle that Holmes has retired, and forbids him to publish any more stories. (Wikipedia)
Those for whom the Oxford University Press edition (1993) was not the final word on the canon won't want to miss the latest volume in the Sherlock Holmes Reference Library, The Return of Sherlock Holmes, by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and edited by Leslie S. Klinger. As David Stuart Davies notes in his introduction, Klinger provides annotations at once "scholarly, instructive and enlightening," as well as chronologies for the individual stories and a bibliography of secondary works.