Title: The Dark Enguiry
Author: Deanna Raybourn
Release: June 2011
Genre: Historical Romance/Detective
Séances, murder and gypsies – this one has it all! Whether you are a fan of Deanna Raybourn’s Lady Julia series or not, this romantic adventure set in Victorian England is a masterful classic tale of mystery and murder in the “who-done-it” manner. The very security of England is at stake and it will take all of Lady Julia’s wiles and her husband Nicholas Brisbane’s shrewd knowledge to get to the bottom of it.
This is the fifth book in the series and if you thought that the romance between Lady Julia and her handsome husband would cool after the nuptials think again! There are points in the book where they can barely keep their hands to themselves, which is of course one of the charms of this series. If you started with the first book in the series, Silent in the Grave, then you will be pleased to know that many of the characters we have come to love are back in this return to England with still more adventure and romance.
Julia’s crazy family are in full force when the two love birds return from their honeymoon in Egypt and India to discover that Julia’s brother Bellmont has been caught in a blackmail scheme by an old mistress. Things get complicated quickly (when don’t they in these books?) and soon we are at a séance at The Ghost Club. Although it is Nicholas’s help that Bellmont wants, you know that in no time at all Julia is in it up to her ears. It seems to happen whether Nicholas want her to help or not.
Julia’s sense of adventure continues to bedevil Nicholas, as much as his protectiveness of her causes Julia to push her own boundaries further and further. A trip to a camp of gypsies gives us one of the most charming (and from the reviews, most popular) scenes in the book as it rings back old days and old memories to Nicholas and gives us a bit more of a peek into what makes our man of mystery tick. Maybe someday soon we will hear the whole story, when Julia finally convinces him that to tell her will not send her away. We all know she is made of sterner stuff than that!
The twists and turns in The Dark Enquiry will keep you reading until the final page, and I can guarantee you that the ending will have your heart racing in fear and empathy for the plucky Lady Julia. The only down side is that you will come to the end of the story and so have to wait for Deanna Raybourn to bring us another chapter in the lives of these wonderful characters. And that is always too long a wait!