By day, Drs. Eugene and Daniel Friedman tend to their pediatric practice, Park Pediatrics on Jericho Turnpike in Floral Park, and when they are not, the father-son duo has published their first book together, The Strange Case of Dr. Doyle: The Journey Into Madness & Mayhem, SquareOne Publishers’ first “true crime” nonfiction title.
“Ever since I was a little boy, I have loved mysteries,” said Daniel, sharing that some of his first book adventures were the Hardy Boys and Encyclopedia Brown series, and the his first Sherlock Holmes story, by Arthur Doyle, when he was about 14 years old.
Daniel said that it was in his third year of medical school when he read Doyle’s thesis in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA). “I couldn’t believe how brilliant he was considering he was only about 24 years old when he wrote it.” Daniel was the same age at the time that he read the thesis and he remembers thinking, “I could never come up with that no matter how smart, I didn’t know anyone that smart.”
He remembers then only three years later, while he was studying for his pediatric board exams,
Three years later, Daniel remembers reading about the Piltdown hoax, the discovery of the “missing link” in 1953 by British scientists. It was deemed that Doyle orchestrated the hoax.
“He was crazy; I had to know more about him,” said Daniel. “I didn’t want to read more about other people’s studies; I wanted to do my own research about Doyle now.”
Doyle’s genius prodded Daniel to want to learn more about the man and his work.
“This is the most fascinating biography of all time; it’s all different from what I have always read [about Doyle] in the past,” said Daniel.
The book research began. He contacted Scotland Yard, Birmingham Police, the University of Edinburgh Medical School, Stonyhurst College and people in Portsmouth.
“Our first book was very exciting,” said Eugene, 71. “[Daniel] is great investigator and he has a great ability to collect facts and put it all together.”
He said his son “put things in really good order and made it easy for me to co-write,” but not before sharing that the duo is already cultivating other ideas for something really creative.
From The Publisher
“London. 1905. A procession of well-attired gentlemen and ladies are clearly out of place among the stalls and pushcarts of the Whitechapel District. As the group makes its way through the crowded streets, the tour guide stops now and then to point out various places where the mutilated bodies of the women had been found. Although the murders occurred 22 years prior, the man leading the group seems to know every detail and aspect of each slaying. Of those things he does not know, he offers freely his own insightful conjecture. This is, however, no average tour of brutal acts. It is a close look at infamous serial killer Jack the Ripper’s trail of blood. And the man leading the group is none other than Sir Arthur Conan Doyle famous creator of fictional character Sherlock Holmes, the world’s greatest detective.
“In The Strange Case of Dr. Doyle, we learn what draws one famous Englishman to another in ways that are as fascinating as they are shocking. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle actually led a tour group to the sites of the Whitechapel Murders.
“While we do not have an existing description of that tour, the Friedmans have pieced together Doyle’s own words to create a riveting account of his publicly stated beliefs on each of these horrific murders. As Doyle takes the group on his tour, the reader learns about the victims and the way each died. The authors have also included new pieces of evidence to understand better the murderer known to history only as Jack the Ripper.
“Interspersed throughout the tour is the Friedmans’ unique and well-researched account of the life of the young Conan Doyle, which was shrouded in more mystery than any of his own works of fiction. The authors have uncovered facts about which few, if any, Doyle biographers have ever been aware. Doyle was able to reinvent himself so fully through his own writings that few recognized the more disturbing elements that were cut out of his own life story. What these two authors have uncovered in their investigation of Jack the Ripper and Sir Arthur will no doubt spark passion and debate among Sherlockians for years to come. The Strange Case of Dr. Doyle proves once again that truth elementary as it may be is always stranger than fiction.”
Eugene Friedman, MD, received his BA from New York University and his medical degree from New York Medical College. He was chief resident in pediatrics at New York Medical College and later served as assistant chief of pediatrics at Martin Army Hospital at Fort Benning, GA.
Eugene has been in private practice for more than 30 years. He has held multiple leadership positions in organized medicine and has devoted himself to the education of future physicians. He is an avid gardener and a translator of late-19th century French poetry. He and his wife, Sheryl, live in Dix Hills and have five children and 13 grandchildren.
Daniel L. Friedman, MD, received his BA from Stony Brook University, and his medical degree from St. George’s School of Medicine. He is currently a practicing pediatrician in Floral Park and is also an active member of the Cohen Children’s Medical Center, where he sits on the voluntary staff advisory committee.
In addition to being an amateur sleuth, Daniel spends his spare time playing guitar for the Friedman Brothers Band. He lives in Miller Place with his wife Elena and their three children, Amanda, David and Andrew.
The Friedmans will be available at Book Revue at 313 New York Ave. in Huntington on Wednesday, April 8, at 7 p.m. for a book talk and signing. The book is also available for purchase through Alibris.com, Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble and Chegg.com.