The Dark Enquiry
By Deanna Raybourn
First, I have a confession. I did something I never do — I read a book out of order in a series. OK, so not a big, earth shattering confession but I felt I needed to say that for readers of this series. I’ve heard fabulous things about the Lady Julia Grey novels and have been meaning to read one for a long time. So when I saw this one on NetGalley I requested it and proceeded to read with abandon. Yes, abandon people.
I feel I should warn of spoilers since this is a series so here you have it but since I haven’t read any of the previous books, I can’t be sure that’s an accurate statement.
Lady Julia Grey is now back in London navigating and negotiating her marriage to Brisbane. While the two are very much in love, it’s Julia’s insistence on being a true and full partner in Brisbane’s life, which includes his work as an investigator and private detective, that’s causing a small wrinkle in their otherwise happy marriage. He balks but she insists, and being Julia, she wins. Brisbane does everything to keep her out of his latest case, including building her a photography studio as a distraction, but Julia manages to not only get involved but also nearly get herself killed in the process.
This book was so entertaining and if they’re all like this, I want to read them all now. Julia and Brisbane are a great couple and for as annoying as she can be, Julia’s delightful. Obviously, there’s much I missed in regard to the relationship but I didn’t feel lost which is a testament to Raybourn’s. She gives you enough to go on and lets you fill in the rest, which in a series I don’t mind and was perfectly at home with here.
There’s one more thing I need to mention — I didn’t care who the killer was. Remember, a mystery is at the heart of this story, and I don’t usually pick up mysteries because I mostly spend my time trying to figure out who did it without paying attention to characters or plot. Here, I didn’t even care who did it and I didn’t read ahead which is HUGE for me. A first actually. Maybe I finally found the right mix for me when it comes to a mystery; I need ghosts and really great characters. Also, the romance is good. I must say this because I’m pretty sure from reading this one installment that many readers are invested in this relationship too.
I probably don’t have to say this but I will anyway — I plan to go back and read the four previous books in this series. If this one was any indication of the goodness I will be experiencing, I will be a very happy reader.
I downloaded an advanced review copy of this book from NetGalley.