Synopsis: "Let the wicket 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.
Prepared to accept that Edward's death was due to a long standing physical infirmity, Julia is outraged when Brisbane visits and suggests that Sir Edward has been murdered. It is a reaction she comes to regret when she discovers the damning paper for herself, and realizes the truth.
Determined to bring her husband's murderer to justice, Julia engages the enigmatic Brisbane to help her investigate Edward's demise. Dismissing his warnings that the investigation will be difficult, if not impossible, Julia presses forward, following a trail of clues that lead her to even more unpleasant truths, and ever closer to a killer who waits expectantly for her arrival.
My Review: This was my second reading of Silent in the Grave, and I was a little worried that perhaps it wouldn't live up to my remembered expectations. I don't really know why I worried about this, because I've loved every other book written by Deanna Raybourn, and this book is just as lovely the second time around as it was the first.
There were a lot of details I didn't necessarily remember were in this particular book - some discoveries feel like they came later in the series, so it was wonderful to read it and reacquaint myself with the origin of Lady Julia's story. The changes you get to see in Julia from the beginning of this book to the point the series is at now are just lovely. I adore seeing Julia grow to the point where she embraces her "Marchness", she really becomes the woman she was always meant to be.
One of the things I love about rereading a book is seeing details I felt like I had missed originally, and one of the things that really struck me in this read is how much I love the March family. I wish I had some of them as my own relatives! The relationship between Julia and her brother Valerius is so loving and engaging - I wanted Val to leap off the page and come be my own brother! As the series progresses, we get to see more of Julia's siblings, but this is such a lovely introduction that I want to know them all.I don't think I can ever speak highly enough of this book, I simply adore it. This quickly became one of my favorite series from the start, and I think any lover of historical fiction would enjoy it. You've got a setting in Victorian times, mystery, romance, a gorgeous leading man in Nicholas Brisbane...what more could you ask for! And can I just say that this book is totally the reason I want a raven as a pet?
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