Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Book Review: Silent in the Grave by Deanna Raybourn

"Silent in the Grave" by Deanna Raybourn
Lady Julia Grey #1
First published in 2007
509 pages
My rating: 4.5 out of 5

I love Deanna Raybourn's Veronica Speedwell series, and recently reading the second installment inspired me to finally pick up "Silent in the Grave," the first book in Raybourn's other historical mystery series. And I have to say, despite its length -- over 500 pages! -- I blew through the first Lady Julia Grey book in just over two days. I simply could not put this book down!

Set in 1886 London, the central puzzle is the suspicious death of Julia's young husband, who collapses in the middle of a party and perishes shortly after. Julia quietly enlists the help of private investigator Nicholas Brisbane -- mysterious, temperamental and darkly handsome.

A lot of time was spent bringing to life the setting and the characters -- a somewhat quirky cast -- and less on the actual sleuthing than I expected, but I found that I actually really enjoyed that. I never once found myself saying, "Gosh, just get me back to the mystery already!" In fact, I was utterly engrossed in the story: the detecting, the hint of romantic tension, the intelligent protagonist. I really liked Lady Julia, flaws and all.

The writing itself was good, and the story obviously kept me flying through the pages, but there were just a few things that held me back from awarding the book 5 stars. For one thing, Brisbane was a little too Holmesian for me -- nothing against Sherlock whatsover, but his character felt slightly derivative. And when the answer to the mystery was finally revealed, it just felt a bit gimmicky to me. That is not to say I didn't love this book -- I devoured it! And it's been a while since I've been this excited to pick up the next book in a series; lucky for me, there are four other books and a few novellas just waiting for me to get my hands on them!


  1. This review is great! I just followed your blog! Mind checking out my latest review on "The Book Thief"? It can be found here: https://armchairbythefire.blogspot.com/ 😃 Thanks!

  2. Nice review! I love it when the setting comes to life, as well as the characters :)
    Hope you get to read the rest of the series soon!

    Amy @ A Magical World Of Words

  3. I sped through this as well when I read it, and then read the whole series in about three days flat :D


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