Lord John is in a difficult spot. His cousin Olivia is engaged to marry the Honorable Joseph Trevelyan, but he has just observed something of a rather personal nature that, if confirmed, might put an end to any talk of marital bliss. Determined to investigate further, Lord John is distracted when the Crown calls for his services. A comrade in arms has been slain, and to complicate matters, the victim may have been a traitor. Now Lord John has not one, but two puzzling mysteries to solve.
©2003 Diana Gabaldon; (P)2003 Recorded Books, LLC
"Gabaldon takes readers for a walk on the wild side....A compelling and unique period mystery for the author's legion of fans." (Kirkus Review)
I should say at once that Lord John Grey is my favorite character from the Outlander books. Here he gets an entire novel to himself. I enjoyed the book when I first read it, and liked it even better with Jeff Woodman's nicely nuanced reading. Granted, it may be a frustrating experience for Clare-and-Jamie fans, as they are barely mentioned here. Likewise, it might be a bit confusing for those who come to this book without having read the Outlander books at all, as they'll be wondering why Lord John keeps thinking about this Jamie character. But I've always liked John Grey best, so this is the perfect book for me - and I thoroughly enjoyed the period detail of some of the seamier parts of London.
400 miles went by without a notice. I really enjoyed the fleshing out of this character. I was somewhat relieved that John was not overly obsessesed with jamie, but had memories that were poignant.
I like Lord Grey when reading the Outlander series and this book only increased my liking. This genre is different from Outlander as it in NOT a romance novel. However, it sparkles with interesting information about 18th century sexual behavior that surprised me.
I love Diana Gabaldon's books. Read them all and can not wait to listen to the unabridged versions. Though not with the usual characters this book is a great story, well read. Combines history with detection, ... I find myself driving around the block, or running an extra mile to listen to this kind of stories.
I didn't dislike it, but I have to say it was pretty boring. John Gray's character was more multidimensional in the Outlander series, which is interesting, because there he was a more minor character. I was really disappointed that The Fiery Cross isn't available on Audible in its unabridged format. With that in mind, this was a decent enough Gabaldon fix.
Avid reader and audiobook listener; I love paranormal lit, mysteries, historical fiction, romance, Brit-crime novels and thrillers.
I tried to actually read this book when it was first published, but sadly, was unable to finish it due to boredom. I just didn't care about Lord John at the time. I only began to read this series for something to do while waiting for the next book in the "Outlander" series to be released. That said, I guess I care a little more about Lord John now, since he's became more of a major figure in the Outlander series. The audiobook version of "Private Matter" is better than the actual hard copy. Lord John can be funny, but is also rather snarky at times. He is a good amateur sleuth and Diana Gabaldon is a good mystery writer; however, I'm not all that much of a fan of the mystery genre, being more of an admirer of straight-forward historical fiction. If you want to fill out your knowledge of Jamie Fraser's character while he and Claire were separated for twenty years after Culloden, I recommend reading the Lord John series, especially "The Brotherhood of the Blade".
(NOTE: There is a review of "Lord John and the Hand of Devils" on Audible.com by one "D. McCoy" that I found quite helpful. This reviewer lists the proper order in which to read the Lord John novels/short stories since order is particularly important with this series. If you listen/read them out of order, you may find that you have more questions than answers. Also, I do recommend the Outlander series to readers of the Lord John series. It is MUCH longer, has many more interesting characters, and readers will discover Jamie Fraser, the love of Lord John's life and, IMHO, one of modern fiction's most compelling and enigmatic characters. Though he is straight and VERY married, he and Lord John do become quite bosom friends once they reach an "understanding". This says something to me about the likeability of Lord John and his overall sense of honor.)
After Jamie and Claire, I was sooo hungry for more I decided to listen to this. Nothing much of either one of them in this book. It gives a glimpse of what Lord John is about but ultimately if you want to listen it for the same reasons I did - don't!
Overall, I'd actually give it a 3 but since it is Gabaldon...
Hmmm, difficult. I love Diana Gabaldon. This work was not her best. Narrator did a fine job but the constant conversation and mystery plot does not start my engine. I never figured out why I care why this O'connell guy got murdered. I can't wait till her next Outlander series book comes out this fall, but Lord John will have to stick to the other series to be interesting.
The John Story is a massive deviation from the Outlander series / journey. The stories, although using the same names, really does not do the original stories justice. This should be advertised as a separate story completely, and not be leveraging the Outlander name. This may be your “cup of tea”, just know it is vastly different.
It had next to nothing to do with the Outlander series
I was not ready for the tone of the book. I have listened to the entire series 3 times. I think this is more a personal experience than anything the narrator contributed.
It was a bit of a mystery but I'll bet mystery lovers wouldn't rate this one very high. It doesn't have the appeal of the Outlander Series. I won't finish the series.
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