Tuesday, August 2, 2011
Review: The Dark Enquiry, by Deanna Raybourn
Original date of publication: 2011
My edition: 2011 (Mira)
Why I decided to read: I’m a fan of the Lady Julia Grey series
How acquired my copy: Amazon pre-order, June 2011
I’m always nervous when I embark on reading another book in the Lady Julia Grey series. Will this one be as good as the last? Or, for that matter, the first? I think the appeal of the series lies in the interaction between Julia and Brisbane; I’m always worried that the spark between them won’t be there anymore.
Julia and Brisbane are back in London from their honeymoon, trying to juggle married life and Brisbane’s career as a secret enquiry agent. One of his new clients is Julia’s older brother Belmont, an MP and pillar of the community who’s the last person you’d expect to ask Brisbane for help. Julia, of course, insinuates herself into the case, and her and Brisbane’s enquiries lead them to the Ghost Club and a medium called Madame Seraphine. Murder, arson, blackmail, and grave robbing—these are all present in the case, and it’s a good one.
As usual, Lady Julia is engaging and funny, and her family is entertaining. It seems that several of her siblings or other family members have been involved in some of her cases (as in the case of Silent in the Sanctuary or Dark Road to Darjeeling). Belmont’s not one of the most interesting of Julia’s siblings, but it’s interesting to watch his case unfold. Character development is also strong, even in a series like this with characters I’ve come to know and love. As such, the series gets more and more interesting with each book. One of the strengths of the series is the relationship between Julia and Brisbane; when I read Dark Road to Darjeeling, I initially was worried that their marriage would mean an end to the romance; not so. It just keeps getting stronger and stronger. In all, this is a very strong addition to the Lady Julia Grey series. Can’t wait for more!