Sunday, June 21, 2009
Silent in the Grave by Deanna Raybourn
"Let the wicked be ashamed, and let them be silent in the grave." These ominous words, slashed from the pages of a book of Psalms, are the last threat that the darling of London society, Sir Edward Grey, receives from his killer. Before he can show them to Nicholas Brisbane, the private inquiry agent he has retained for his protection, Sir Edward collapses and dies at his London home, in the presence of his wife, Julia, and a roomful of dinner guests.
"To say that I met Nicholas Brisbane over my husband's dead body is not entirely accurate. Edward, it should be noted, was still twitching upon the floor."
And so begins the delightful novel, Silent in the Grave, by Deanna Raybourn.
A truly enjoyable book which kept me engaged from the first two sentences of the book (hooks you right from the start) until the last page (lots of twisty turns in the plot and a few surprises that I didn't see coming). While the book is in essence a Victorian murder mystery, the formal working relationship between Lady Julia Grey and Nicholas Brisbane takes an interesting turn and she is attracted to the mysterious Brisbane... but discovers that he has a dark and dangerous side to his personality. Is he battling a physical illness, a psychological warfare, or something even more sinister? We are given a few insights into Brisbane's life and past, but there is still much to learn about this interesting character. A wonderful mixture of period details, a good bit of detective work, and scandalous revelations in the prim and proper London home of Lady Julia.
Also by Deanna Raybourn: Silent in the Sanctuary, Silent on the Moor