Tuesday, June 21, 2011
The Dark Enquiry, by Deanna Raybourn
Lady Julia and Brisbane have taken up residence in London, and we get a glimpse into what life is like for residents as Lady Julia is working on yet another recipe for black powder, after several failed batches. Aquinas cannot keep staff because of the strange comings and goings, and Lady Julia is still trying to work her way into Brisbane's life by being his partner in investigations. Lady Julia's enthusiasm for all things related to Brisbane's business leads her to worm her way into cases by means of not telling her husband until she is need of rescue. In fact, the entire book is full of Brisbane trying to keep Lady Julia out of harms way while she is assisting him with a case involving a medium with possible links to espionage. As the novel unravels, you see a different side of the Brisbane's; the side that shows just how devoted they truly are to each other. Brisbane cannot live without Lady Julia, and his visions begin early on with a sensation of being suffocated, which comes to shocking reality towards the end. His visions are connected to his emotions towards his wife, and these visions he is unable to fight and numb with medicines. Lady Julia is just as devoted, and her entrance into her husband's investigation stems from her worry that he is in trouble. All this not love, however, as Brisbane shows his anger more than once at Lady Julia's actions and puts his foot down. There is still the tug of war about Lady Julia's place in his investigations and her safety, but the passion they have for each other is proudly displayed even if it's not written in detail. Their love for each other can be felt.
The story itself involves espionage and a cast of secondary characters that as always in a Raybourn novel, have interesting back stories and complete the plot. I was very happy to have more Plum in this book, for he is my favorite brother, and of course, Lady Portia and her new addition are present. This book will lead you through a roller coaster of emotions, and I went from sitting on the edge of my seat, to laughing, to having to set the book down and cry my eyes out. (you'll know when you get to that part) If you are a fan of mystery/suspense, and like it with a dose of Victorianism, you will want to pick up this book regardless if you've read the entire series. Oh, and it's a must have for fans. Brisbane only gets more swoon worthy as the series goes on, and this book is no exception.