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Lord John and the Brotherhood of the Blade (Lord John Grey #2)

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3.81 of 5 stars 3.81  ·  rating details  ·  13,053 ratings  ·  593 reviews
In her much-anticipated new novel, the New York Times bestselling author of the Outlander saga brings back one of her most compelling characters: Lord John Grey--soldier, gentleman, and no mean hand with a blade. Here Diana Gabaldon brilliantly weaves together the strands of Lord John's secret and public lives--a shattering family mystery, a love affair with potentially di ...more
Hardcover, 494 pages
Published August 28th 2007 by Delacorte Press (first published 2007)
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Community Reviews

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Isis
Dec 04, 2013 Isis rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: slash fans, particularly of Sharpe and Age of Sail fandoms
Recommended to Isis by: Raven
I dithered about this. I feel a little odd giving a guilty-pleasure just-for-fun book like this five stars, but when I compare it to what I have recently given four, well, I have no choice. Because I loved this so very, very much.

This is the kind of book I want to write, the kind of book I wish there was a whole lot more of. It's basically slash fanfic for her Outlander series, I gather, and it seems that whichever you read first, you prefer. (And oddly, the bits that involve Jamie Fraser are my
...more
Res
The one where Lord John's mother remarries, which sets in motion new dangers, new revelations about his father's disgrace and death, and a relationship with an attractive new stepbrother.

I like Lord John a great deal, but I don't like Lord John books very much. Partly this is just a book/reader mismatch. I don't enjoy mysteries, so I'm reading these particular mysteries for the character stuff and the historical-milieu stuff, which is like someone who doesn't like romance reading romantic-suspe
...more
Kelly
I enjoyed this book very much. Lord John is an engaging, interesting character -- and he doesn't spend a whole lot of time in this book mooning over Jamie Fraser! This is set right after the death of Geneva Dunsany in the Outlander timeline, but the meat of the book is a mystery in Lord John's own family, and John's love affair with an attractive young man. Gabaldon writes men very well -- we get enough emotional revelation to let us cnnect with the characters, but they are most definitely men.

T
...more
Tatiana
Feb 02, 2010 Tatiana rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Lord John fans
I still don't understand why Gabaldon's Lord John books are not more popular than they are. Is the "gayness" of the main character really such a huge turn-off? Because I can't find any other reason to dislike these books. To me, "Lord John and the Brotherhood of the Blade" is another great historical novel, full of subtle wit and humor, details of 18th century London society and entertaining descriptions of military living during the Seven Year War, along with a nice mystery (this time directly ...more
Jane
Lord John, who emerged from the Outlander series as a separate series of novels, has a few problems on his plate. For one thing, he's in love with his new stepbrother. For another, the bitter feelings surrounding his father's death are still very much alive after a period of several years, and his brother Hal won't bear his father's title. Then there's the matter of the pages from his father's missing journal that keep turning up. . . On top of which, as a professional soldier Lord John generall ...more
Kimberly
I read this book after finishing Gabaldon's A Breath of Snow and Ashes. Thank goodness I found out it was out as it restored my faith in Gabaldon's skill as a writer and storyteller.

The plot mixes an important "whodunit" as well as insight into John's personal life as a man and a soldier. The pacing and story were spot on and refreshing after the near 1000 pages of meandering in ABOSAS.

I've always been fond of the character of Lord John -- even when he's painted as the bad guy. But this book t
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Surreysmum
I dropped away from Diana Gabaldon's main (hetero) romance series after the second or third book, mostly because het romance isn't my thing, and possibly because she shifted the locale to the Americas, while my own initial interest was because of the Scottish setting. ("Outlander", the first book, owes a certain amount to an old favourite of mine, "The Flight of the Heron", though they are certainly very different in tone, detail and degree of graphic sex!)

Anyway, Lord John, a minor character in
...more
Chance Lee
The back of Lord John and the Brotherhood of the Blade goes into detail about the plot: the death of Lord John's father was surrounded in scandal and secrecy, and one of those secrets has resurfaced, forcing the family to confront the past. This plot drives most of the story's action, but the back of the book relegates the /emotional/ drive of the story to a mere few words, "a love affair with potentially disastrous consequences."

This "love affair" is Lord John's relationship with his soon-to-be
...more
Marcie
I've put off thinking about this one because I was so disappointed in it. At times, I downright hated it. Who the hell was this main character? I thought I knew, thought he was smarter, braver, funnier, more urbane than depicted here.

1st Problem: We get to know his older brother much better here -- at the expense of camera time usually spent on his funny and insightful sidekicks Col. Harry Quarry and valet Tom. I didn't care for the focus on petulant sibling issues. I prefer Lord John in a light
...more
sage
warning: spoilers follow!


I think this is definitely the best of the Lord John books so far. I'm really delighted to see a mainstream bestseller write a vividly sexual queer romance. Heaven knows we've seen Lord John show enough repressed desire, but it's lovely to see him with a lover and in more explicit detail than I expected.

The mystery plot was a bit more convoluted than I considered necessary, especially since I'd completely forgotten who the villain was by the time he arrived at the end --
...more
Andrea
Feb 24, 2015 Andrea rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Fans of historical fiction/mystery, fans of Diana Gabaldon
"The seagulls on the Tiber call all night, and call your name.
"Ave!" they cry.
"Ave."


ETA, 2/24/15: Brotherhood of the Blade was just as excellent the second time around. Great mystery, charm, wit and snark from the entire Grey family, sadness, and drama. This is a wonderful series that I recommend to historical fiction readers and (certain) fans of the Outlander series. If you can, listen to the audio version. Jeff Woodman is a treasure.

Original Review
I so love this series. You get action, my
...more
Dawn
Unfortunately, the Lord John series is not nearly as satisfying as Gabaldon's Outlander series. I do love Lord John Grey as a main character but the plot-lines are rather difficult to follow and there are entirely too many characters to keep track of. As the second book in this series, I was disappointed in the lack of continuity between this book and the first in the series, Lord John and the Private Matter. The only similarity between them was Lord John as the main character. Not that I have t ...more
Artemiz
Lord John and the Brotherhood of the Blade is another wonderful example of Diana Gabaldon's writing.

This time Grey doesn't have to solve some criminal mystery but the mystery of his father death. And besides doing his best to understand why his father did allegedly committed suicide and was a Jacobite and rumors made him also be an sodomite, he meets once again his half brother Percy Wainwright and now the Outlander series readers can find out why he is very reserved and untrustworthy toward him
...more
Matt
Gabaldon moves the Lord John series forward in this wonderful novel, which opens in 1758, as the Seven Years War continues pulling Britain into the fray, now fighting for Prussia. Lord John and his brother, Hal, enjoy life as soldiers. When the discussion turns to the death of their father, both begin to remember the events that led to that fateful day. Seventeen years earlier, Lord John's father, the Duke of Pardloe, died from a pistol shot and accusations of being a Jacobite sympathiser swirli ...more
Joana

** 4 stars**

"Dead is dead, Major," he said quietly. "It is not a romantic notion. And whatever my own feelings in the matter, my family would not prefer my death to my dishonor. While there is anyone alive with a claim upon my protection, my life is not my own."


It'a hard to pinpoint why I enjoy this series so much although I miss Jamie and Claire terrible. The thing is, John truly is such a fascinating character, that give us an unique view of the military life and of a life of a gay man in t
...more
Barbara ★
I really enjoy the Lord John tales by Gabaldon. They have absolutely nothing to do with her Outlander series even if Lord John is a minor character from it. The Lord John tales follow Lord John on his exploits with the Royal English Army (or whatever the hell its called). Of course, you also enjoy his day to day endeavors while he is on temporary leave and between war engagements.

This particular novel shuttles back and forth between the mystery of his fathers murder 15 years ago and his new step
...more
Mary
Diana Gabaldon never fails to deliver a well-researched and well-written novel. Lord John and the Brotherhood of the Blade is no exception.

While this is an enjoyable installment that gives us further background into John's family and personal history, something was missing for me. I didn't feel the same attachment to the characters and there were very few scenes that left me with 'the feelings' that Diana usually conveys through her writing. There were a few lighthearted moments - John's cousin
...more
Leilani
I read the first couple of Outlander books about a decade ago, so I only retain a few foggy memories of them. Contrary to some of the other reviews, I enjoyed this book even without any detailed knowledge of the main series. The historical research felt strong and detailed; the characters felt appealing but not anachronistically modern; and the settings were vividly drawn - I felt like I was really in all those cold rooms with rain beating at the windows.

The story alternates between Lord John's
...more
Mary
From what I have read of the Lord John Series so far (Lord John and the Hellfire Club, Lord John and the Succubus, and Lord John and the Private Matter), I would say that Lord John and the Brotherhood of the Blade is the best of the bunch*. I think DG's strength lies in her character development and emotional connections, and I don't think she was able to do that as well in her shorter stories. Though still probably a "short story" by DG standards, this particular novel was a little longer than ...more
Emily
Since I stayed up until 4:30 this morning finishing this, I'd say it deserves 5 stars. I love Lord John. Lord John and the Private Matter was enjoyable, but I thought this one was even better, with more complications-family scandal, mystery, war and a new relationship keep John's story buzzing along, and showing him in these various situations really gives insight into his character that isn't there in the Outlander books, where he is eventually an important character, but still not the main one ...more
Blaine
There were moments when I thouight... thwarted again? But, all in all, I loved this book, flaws and all :)

Lord John is a very compelling character to read (and yes, the snippets of Jamie were absolutely wonderful, though very bittersweet)

Already started the next book, can't seem to stop.
Erica Anderson
I know it's heretical, but I actually like the Lord John books better than the Outlander series.

I think Gabaldon must be channeling Grey, straight from Georgian England, because his voice is so authentic. Gabaldon's trademark historical detail is laced throughout, including an absolutely amazing scene involving leeches. [Incidentally, if you're a writer, I recommend you read this scene carefully. It's brilliantly done.] Here's an excerpt:

******

... Hal replied, bending over the table to peer at
...more
Barb
While there are things that I liked about this story overall I found it rather disappointing and not up to the same standard as most of the other work I've read by Diana Gabaldon (not including 'the Fiery Cross').

I've always liked Lord John and I liked that his romantic life was in the spotlight in this story but unfortunately there were too many particulars about the love interest and their relationship that just didn't lay well. The mystery portion of the story was a bit on the ridiculous side
...more
George
First impressions: no idea she wrote this (sort of thing)! I was pleasantly surprised, after taking a risk on a $4 nice hardcover copy, some vague inklings in re the jacket notes, and generally pleasant memory of her Outlander series, to find that this was - subject matter wise - right up my alley, if you take my meaning (cough). So, about two paragraphs in, I realised my mistake. Or hers. She must have written this entire thing while under the effects of some mentally-debilitating drug. That's ...more
Jamie
This book is set in 1758, immediately after the death of Geneva Dunsany and the birth of her son William, events that were described in the novel Voyager. It's pretty good; better than the first Lord John novel.

Lord John has a romantic fling in this one, but it was hard to enjoy it when I was so worried about him getting caught. This book vividly portrays 18th century homophobia, and indeed the mystery is concerned with a suspected Jacobite "Sodomite" plot that may have something to do with the
...more
Toni FGMAMTC
This was the best LJG book that I've read so far. I found out so much about his family relationships and his father's death. Also, he finally had somewhat of a relationship for a bit. I'm a big fan of M/M, but for those that aren't, it wasn't that graphic. I love how he pines for Jamie, but I feel sympathy for him also on that account. JAMMF does make an appearance in this book. That's always a plus. LJG always has so many live changing decisions to make and so many mysteries to solve. And his a ...more
EvaS
I’m a big fan of Lord John, so I enjoyed this book. I can only describe it as a mystery with a dash of lust. I loved getting a glimpse into his life and his interaction with Percy, Hal & Jamie (it was enlightening after reading Outlander & getting Jamie Fraser’s take on things). The only part I did not enjoy was the military jargon and the descriptions of the battle & army… just not something I’m interested in. Diana does include a lot of military details & scenes in her other bo ...more
Becky
This is the second of the Lord John Grey novels. It takes place about six months after the first. Lord John's regiment is about to leave London for the Seven Years' War in Germany, and his mother is remarrying. This spurs events that lead to John trying to clear the name of his late father, the disgraced Duke of Pardloe. The mystery angle of the book was eclipsed by its more personal elements, giving us a much more deeper view of John's life as a career soldier and a closeted, but active, homose ...more
Laura
This was my first Lord John book, and I'm not a huge fan, although I woudl read more of the series. I had mixed hopes because I'm a huge fan of the Outlander series and Lord John showed some promise as a character in those. But the most interesting parts of this book were thoseinvolving characters that appear in the Outlander series. The book does shed light on the relationship between Jamie Fraser and Lord John, and introduces a few characters who appear later in the Outlander series.

The plot d
...more
Annie
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
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Diana Jean Gabaldon Watkins grew up in Flagstaff, Arizona and is of Mexican-American and English descent. She has earned three degrees: a B.S. in Zoology, a M.S. in Marine Biology, and a Ph.D in Ecology.

She currently lives in Scottsdale, Arizona .
More about Diana Gabaldon...

Other Books in the Series

Lord John Grey (7 books)
  • Lord John and the Private Matter (Lord John Grey, #1)
  • Lord John and the Succubus (Lord John Grey, #1.5)
  • Lord John and the Haunted Soldier (Lord John Grey, #2.5)
  • Warriors
  • The Scottish Prisoner (Lord John Grey, #3)
  • Down These Strange Streets
Outlander (Outlander, #1) Dragonfly in Amber (Outlander, #2) Voyager (Outlander, #3) Drums of Autumn (Outlander, #4) The Fiery Cross (Outlander, #5)

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