Created by Neurobellum Productions

Presenting a beautiful new edition of Arthur Conan Doyle's first Sherlock Holmes novel lushly illustrated by artist Vincent Mallie.

Latest Updates from Our Project:

Finished product picture flood! Plus: Backerkit orders locking this weekend!
4 days ago – Thu, Mar 23, 2023 at 04:35:38 PM

Hey, everyone!

Happy Thursday! We know it has been several weeks since our last update, but that's not for lack of progress... in fact, we just received finished advance copies of a bunch of stuff from the printer this week! We cannot contain our excitement over how beautiful everything has turned out...! 😃

Are you ready for a flood of actual finished product pix...? Strap yourselves in! Here we go...!

The bundle of linen cardstock stretch goal prints (polybagged)
Close up on the detail and linen texture of the prints.
The foil bookmarks included with the "Sleuth" bundle.
The two bookplates ("Gold lot" first 500 and bw plate for the rest). NOT SHOWN: Silver "original backer" bookplate. (We're still waiting for those advances to arrive.)
The stretch goal postcard pack
The field journal included in the "Sleuth" bundle.

Let's not forget the book itself...

Beautiful endpapers
silky ribbon bookmark

And the pièce de résistance... THE SLIPCASE SET!

Rather than jump to photos, how about an "unboxing" video first? This is how they will arrive in your order: shrink-wrapped with corner protectors --

Okay, now for photos...

Lush linen texture and brilliant gold foil...
Let's not overlook the bright yellow slipcase liner...

The "+spacer" upgrade slipcase will be identical except instead of a copy of ARSENE LUPIN, there will be a slice of Styrofoam occupying that space and an "original backer" bookplate inside the shrinkwrap. Here's a photo from the factory (we haven't received a copy yet):

The other "Sleuth" bundle items are being printed and procured now, as are the stretch goal coins. Once we have photos of prototypes, we'll be sure to share those here.

Currently, we expect to have everything in-hand by the 2nd or 3rd week of May. Barring any obstacles, we should then be able to start shipping within just a couple of weeks of that. So right now, we're feeling relatively confident that shipping will begin by the end of May/early-June. Pretty close to on-time as-promised! 😊 

To that end --

We will be locking Backerkit orders this weekend!

Tomorrow evening, at around 5pm, we will press the "Lock Orders" button in Backerkit which will a) send out reminders to those (180) of you who still haven't filled out your surveys, b) send out a final reminder to everyone else who has filled out their survey, and c) start a 48-hour countdown to the automatic locking of orders.

What that means is if you wish to make any final adjustments to your order (final add-ons, address changes, or payment method), please do so before Sunday!  Any changes after that will need to be made manually and with special permissions so as not to mess up any of the fulfillment preparation.

There will be another final "Address Lock" date closer to shipping, so if that is all you need to adjust, we  should be able to make that change for you. But the "Order Lock" deadline is so that we can finalize item quantities and start final planning.

With orders locked on Sunday, Credit Cards will be charged on Monday.  Please, for the love of mercy, if you have any questions about a balance due or charge that is made, contact us here on Kickstarter and we would be happy to answer any questions.  We will be online all day Saturday and Sunday, so hopefully we can reply to you quickly. (If you are confused by something and jump directly to challenging the charge with your bank, it starts a lengthy inquiry process that puts your order in suspended hiatus, so please, let's try to avoid that misunderstanding... )

If the payment method you originally entered into your survey fails, Backerkit will reach out to let you know to please address the problem. They will keep trying daily until they are able to complete the order. (And we can only include your order with the fulfillment data once it is complete.)

Looking ahead...

We expect to have Digital Rewards ready in mid-April, and, as mentioned, shipping ready to begin by the end of May. We are looking at some new shipping efficiencies with this campaign (and all future campaigns moving forward), so we're hoping that everyone will have their stuff promptly once shipping has begun. That includes all International Backers. We know that some of our previous campaigns from last year involved a painfully long wait for overseas backers, but we have been looking at alternate strategies that we hope will mean everyone getting their packages within just a few weeks of each other. After 24 successful campaigns, we're excited to put some of the many lessons we've learned over the years into improving the experience for everyone. We have several very cool projects lined up for the months ahead, and we would love for everyone to feel confident enough to follow us along for each adventure! 😊

Thanks everyone! More news to come soon!

Back at the desk and things are coming together!
about 1 month ago – Wed, Feb 15, 2023 at 05:56:36 PM

Hey everyone!

We are back from FIBD, the big comic festival in Angouleme, France, and while I would like to say we are rested up and back in shape, I think I've already forgotten what relaxing felt like... 😜 The last two weeks have been a blur getting caught up again from our week-long absence, but a lot of exciting things have been happening since. Not only did we find a bunch of FANTASTIC new titles at the show that we hope to publish this year (offers are already made, fingers crossed...), but other exciting developments have popped up since our return. We can't talk about some of those things just yet, but we CAN share the pre-press proofs that we received this week for the HOLMES/LUPIN items currently in production!

We received a wet proof of the slipcase wrapping (the sheet of printed paper wrapped around the slipcase box boards). A "wet proof" refers to a test print that it is made on actual target paper stock with final special processes, in this case, the textured linen graining and gold foil stamping applied to the matte laminate. Here's how the actual printed sheets might look before being wrapped and glued to the box boards:

(Don't mind the wrinkles -- those are from being sent halfway around the world in a soft envelope.)

The linen texture is very nice, and if you've held any of our previous titles that have used such textured graining, you'll agree that it adds a really premium tactile quality to the production. And you know us -- we're all about premium quality. 😉

While these images above may appear a bit "fluid" (ne "wrinkled"), the final wrapped and cured boxes will be SWEET. We hope to receive advance finished copies around mid-March which we will of course share here with excitement and pride. 😊

Along with the slipcase wrap wet proof, they sent a sampling of the gilding that will be applied to the page edges of the HOLMES books. The pix below show the ink color and density of the gilding that will be applied, but this sample has been applied to a smaller sheath of pages; the actual book itself is thicker.

This color tone will match the cover and spine colors very nicely.

Last but not least, they included "plotter's proofs" of several of the bonus and ancillary "Sleuth bundle" items. "Plotters Proofs" are basic inkjet productions meant to confirm the proper size and assembly of a printed item. These are not on the final paper stock, nor are they color-accurate, but they are the first (well, second, actually) stage in the proofing process.

Postcards, bookmark, bookplates, art prints, and journal cover shown.

These may not be the most exciting pics, but they show that progress is definitely being made...! In a few weeks, you'll see a dizzy degree of difference!

That's all for now. As mentioned above, we hope to have some finished items to show in the next 3-4 weeks, but until then, we'll keep on cranking along!

(Above video from a toy store window in Angouleme...)

Brief check in + MEZKAL
2 months ago – Fri, Jan 20, 2023 at 11:32:15 AM

Hello, everyone!

Happy Friday -- we don't really have anything new to report, but wanted to touch base briefly to let you know that things are rolling along as anticipated and are looking good. The printers have completed proofing all of the files and will begin production as soon as they reopen after Chinese New Year.

We also wanted to let you know that we will be traveling next week, so we may be unable or slow to respond to any comments, questions, or messages. We will try our best to stay in touch, but can't guarantee our connectivity on the road. We will be in Angouleme, France, for this year's FIBD ("Festival International de la Bande Dessinee"), a huge comic convention that we have attended for the past 10 years (minus the last two due to COVID). We are looking forward to seeing old friends, publishing partners, and authors. We will even have our own small display table in the Rights Tent this year, so that will be exciting. If you are, by chance, planning to attend and can get into the Rights Tent, stop by and say hi! 😊

In the meantime, if you haven't already, we'd love for you to check out our newest campaign for MEZKAL and CONVOY that launched on Tuesday. We’d love for everyone to please check it out! It is a pair of beautifully gritty and explosive noir/SF tales by Kevan Stevens and Jef that we’ve been excited to share for quite a while…

Thanks, everyone! More news to come!

Backerkit surveys away! Watch your inboxes!
3 months ago – Sat, Jan 07, 2023 at 08:20:37 PM

Happy Friday, everyone!

Just a quick update to let you know that the rest of the Backerkit surveys have been sent! Please watch for an email from "" (I think) to your Kickstarter-associated email address. If you haven't received it in the next 12 hours or so, please check your spam folder. If you still haven't received it by Monday, message us here on Kickstarter and we'll send you your unique link directly. 

As mentioned in the previous update, we will leave the Backerkit open until March 17th (or thereabouts). You will be free to make any changes to your order until then: add to or modify your order, change the delivery address, update payment information, etc.  We will not actually charge Credit Cards until the orders are locked on that date

One benefit of using Backerkit is if you unfortunately missed Kickstarter's collection phase and weren't able to complete your pledge on Kickstarter, you should still get a Backerkit survey invitation which will provide an opportunity to complete your payment there. If you have any questions or concerns, message us and we'll do our best to answer them.

The print files have all been approved by the author and licensor, and the printer is running preflight proofing now! We'll keep you all posted along the way and share any interesting production photos as they come in. The turkey is in the oven... now we wait for it to cook! 😊

Thanks, again! More to come!

Backerkit approved, Smoke Test started!
3 months ago – Wed, Jan 04, 2023 at 09:33:43 PM

Happy New Year, everyone!

We hope you had a wonderful holiday and are settling into what will be an awesome 2023. We're readjusting to being back at the desk after some extended holiday travel, catching up on a ton of business and email that piled up in our absence. We apologize to anyone who had pressing questions while we were out -- we tried to monitor the inbox as best as we could, but you know how crazy the holidays can be, especially when traveling...😵

One of the things we had hoped to be able to report from the road was the status of the Backerkit Surveys -- our goal before leaving was to have it approved by Backerkit in time to launch on Dec 30th, but that plan admittedly did not take their own holiday schedule into account. They (understandably) were closed for quite a bit of that week, so getting their feedback and approval to launch took longer than expected. There was also a bit of confusion on their part as to how the +slipcase upgrade add-ons worked, so that took an extra bit to get sorted. But having said that, they gave it the green light this morning, and smoke test surveys have gone out!

For those new to the process, the smoke test is a "soft launch" of the surveys that are sent to a random ~5% of the total backer list to make sure that there are no confusing questions or bugs to be addressed. Assuming that the test run goes smoothly, we'll send the rest of the surveys within the next 24-48 hours. Backerkit recommends waiting until ~75% of the smoke test surveys have been completed before sending out the rest, so if you are one of those 128 randomly chosen few, please try to complete yours promptly! 👍

If you are not one of the smoke test backers, fear not -- your survey will likely go out before Friday (assuming no critical technical issues pop up).

Backerkit will stay open until we lock orders in mid-March (estimated March 17th), so you will be able to make any adjustments to your order until then, including address and payment information.  Credit Cards will not be charged until the orders are locked. Shipping is on track to begin in mid-May, so think about where you will be at that time when entering your delivery address. (And if you don't know for sure, don't worry -- there will be ample opportunities to update that info up to a week before Quartermaster actually starts shipping.)

That's all for now. Thanks again for your wonderful support!