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Silent in the Grave (Lady Julia Grey #1)

3.93 of 5 stars 3.93  ·  rating details  ·  11,749 ratings  ·  1,475 reviews
"Let the wicked be ashamed, and let them be silent in the grave."

These ominous words are the last threat that 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, he collapses and dies at his London home, in the presence of his wife, Julia, and a roomful of din
Paperback, 435 pages
Published January 2010 by MIRA Books (first published January 1st 2006)
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Jun 27, 2010 Hannah rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Hannah by: Hanneybean
Obviously this book has far more admirers then detractors, (if the ratings are any indication), but I'm damned if I know why.

As far as I can analyse, you might like this book if you enjoy:

1. A surly and charmless hero masquerading as a grade C Sherlock Holmes clone.

2. Forced chemistry (or rather no chemistry) between said surly/charmless hero and an equally vapid "oh-I'm-so-stupid-but-I'm-so-adorable-because-the-writer-tells-you-so" heroine.

3. A 435 page mystery where the actual detection takes
Meredith Galman
Everybody loves a good international man of mystery, but private enquiry agent Nicholas Brisbane is Just Too Much: he's a prizefighter! he's a violin virtuoso! he's a duke's grandnephew! he's a half-blood Rom AND a psychic (and a floor wax, and a dessert topping . . . .)! Lady Julia Grey -- although at times stupid and inconsistent -- is a more interesting character, because she's believably human. Born into a family of eccentrics, Julia has spent her entire life suppressing herself, until the d ...more
Wendy Darling
Dear me. This book puts me in a quite a predicament, because I'm not quite sure what to make of it.

First off, the good stuff:

I liked the Victorian world that the author created. Dress, customs, and attitudes are meticulously detailed in the beginning and the book is very well-written. I'm partial to books set in this time period, so it's always a pleasant surprise when the world-building feels authentic to me.

The not so good stuff:

* the mystery is a snooze. It's very easy to guess why Lady Juli
Finding Silent in the Grave turned out to be one of those beautiful, stumbling across the perfect book to fit your mood moments. Here I am, staring down the barrel of this pregnancy, willing the last few days to pass faster, and this absolutely delightful Victorian mystery proves just the thing to take my mind off the all-too-slowly ticking clock. Even better, it's the first in a series with the second one already out and the third due to hit shelves in March.

Silent in the Grave starts out with
The first half of this book is readable enough (a nice opening chapter, in particular) although Lady Julia is written as a modern woman stuffed into a corset and plopped down in Victorian London, where she bemoans racism and classism and is totally cool with her sister's lesbian relationship.

The writing is good for a first novel, if perhaps a bit awkward and repetitive in places. I did like the author's lighthearted style.

The longer I read, however, the more I began to dislike the story. The mys
I absolutely loved this book and thank you to my Goodreads friend Ruth for recommending it! I was a little worried when I first started it, because my expectations had grown so high after reading Ruth's reviews for this book and the following three ones. Thankfully, it completely lived up to - and actually surpassed - my expectations :-). I checked this book out from the library, but will definitely be buying my own copy.

It's told in first-person narration and I found our heroine, Julia, absolut
Tadiana ♕Part-Time Dictator♕
Victorian-era murder mystery: Lady Julia Grey is the young widow of Sir Edward, who collapses at a dinner party and soon dies, despite the best efforts of the doctor and Nicholas Brisbane, a dark and mysterious private investigator who had been hired by Edward because of some threats he'd received.

Nicholas Brisbane and Lady Julia

Brisbane informs Julia that her husband was likely murdered rather than passing away of a lifelong heart condition, but Julia angrily dismisses him. Nearly a year later
This is our pick for this month's Vaginal Fantasy Hangout. Read along and then watch on Feb 27th, 8pm PST! THATS MONDAY THE LAST MONDAY OF THE MONTH!
The Lady Julia Grey series is one of my favorites series ever. It's one of those that jumped out with the first line and grabbed me in: "To say that I met Nicholas Brisbane over my husband’s dead body is not entirely accurate. Edward, it should be noted, was still twitching upon the floor." From that line onward, I was completely besotted with it. I was a bit nervous for this re-read in case it didn't match up. Thankfully, I loved it almost as much the second time around. Knowing the culprit too ...more
Mar 23, 2008 _inbetween_ rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone but me?
Recommended to _inbetween_ by: chatpa, alex, etc.
I got this book on the strenght of the first page, and even after a third still thought I wanted to read more and more. But despite it probably being one of the better written books I read these months, I'm currently so pissed off at it that I can't bear to read the last few chapters and want to excorcise my frustration.

Is it really just me who sees the "solution" at the very first clue placed? I know it's a matter of pride to claim to have known the killer, but that's not why I say it - I hate
Allison (The Allure of Books)
Silent in the Grave by Deanna Raybourn is the first book of one of the best series I have ever read. I’ve reviewed other books of the series and talked about the characters on the blog before, but I recently started at the beginning for a reread and couldn’t resist writing a review! So…now I take on the challenge of reviewing one of my favorite books of all time…

I owned Silent in the Grave for a long time before I finally got around to picking it up. I don’t remember why I finally did start read
Feb 06, 2008 Wealhtheow rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Liz
Shelves: historical, regency
The book opens thusly: "To say that I met Nicholas Brisbane over my husband's dead body is not entirely accurate. Edward, it should be noted, was still twitching upon the floor."

An excellent beginning! It is, unfortunately, all downhill from there. Lady Julia Grey, the narrator and heroine, is a sensible, good hearted gentlewoman far ahead of her time. She's a very readable character, although a bit too anachronistic. I would like to read a book in which she simply goes through life. Unfortunate
Olga Godim
I liked this book, although it is a bit darker than I usually read. It is a historical mystery taking place in the end of the 19th century. After a few years of unhappy marriage, the protagonist Julia’s husband dies. She feels adrift but liberated, until a stranger drops a sinister hint into her mind: her husband might’ve been murdered. At first, she wouldn’t believe him, but after finding an ominous note among her late husband’s papers, she starts doubting herself. Perhaps she should conduct a ...more
I don’t even fuckin’ – this job. I knew it would take all my time and energy and sleep and endurance. I didn’t know it would also take all of my brain, so there is no more brain for books, and I end up almost kinda liking things like this.

This is a “fluffy” but “dark” mystery-romance set in the “Victorian Era.” The hero is a multilingual sleuth with shady connections, a drug habit, and a violin – a Sherlock Holmes knockoff, not to put too fine a point on it.

Very knocked. Very off.

The heroine is
"To say that I met Nicholas Brisbane over my husband's dead body is not entirely accurate. Edward, it should be noted, was still twitching upon the floor."

Thus begins the compulsively readable mystery by Deanna Raybourne. Lady Julia Grey is a respectable member of the Victorian Britain upper class. Her husband dies during a dinner party. Edward had a congenital heart condition that affected all the men in his family. it was understood that he was likely to die at an early age. A mysterious stra
Every now and then, you stumble blindly across a book that you pick up not expecting a great deal from, but you find yourself completely unable to put down, almost like it was written just for you. Well, this book was one of those for me. I only picked this up since I've received the last in the Lady Julia series, The Dark Enquiry, from netgalley, and I wanted to actually do it justice, and read the others in the series, before I read that one.

I haven't read a historical mystery story for years
Mishelle LaBrash
I'm torn with my rating for this book, so much so I almost didn't bother with a review. If it wasn't for my commitment to do so, with every book I read this year, I probably wouldn't have.

Why? Because, this book confused me. And I would hate to be unjust in my review because of this.

From the first page, it gets you. I believe it may have the most original, and fantastic opening line, I have ever read. This level of intrigue continues for the first half of the book. This is where it started to d
Beanbag Love
I don't know what to categorize this book. It's a historical in first person POV and it has romantic overtones, but it's not a romance. It's a mystery, so maybe that's what it should be called. A historical mystery.

Anyway, books 1 and 2 of this series have been sitting on my Kindle for about two years now. I don't know why I was never compelled to read them, but recently my friend, Julianna, started rating them highly so I decided to dive in. And I'm glad I did. What a treat.

Lady Julia is a gre
Oh I love our book group! I was so happy today to feel that we could discuss contraversial topics together, give frank thoughts and feelings, and process together. I loved seeing thoughts evolove right before our eyes. You can go in thinking you don't like this or that and come out with a little wider perspective that I even find changes my feelings on a subject at times. So thank you to a group of intelligent women for making even a cozy-mystery a mind expanding moment. :)

Katie Montgomery
EDIT: OK, so I just went through and read a few more reviews for this title, and I am hijacking my own review because I have to clarify something.

Apparently, some people feel that this plot is "too feminist".

#1 -- I have read this book cover to cover, and I have no idea what you people are talking about, other than maybe the fact that a fictional Victorian lady has some self-respect, some sense of social justice, and a goddamned pair of eyes.

#2 -- Even if this book were a scifi novel about a bun
Brandy Painter
I have a lot of friends who love this series so I feel really bad that I didn't like this book at all, so bad I thought, "I could give it two stars. It wasn't that badly written." Yet one star means didn't like it and I didn't like. I have reasons:

1. Totally called it. I knew who the murderer was from the first scene that person was in and figured out the motive shortly after. Now that in and of itself is not enough to turn me off a book. If I believe the amount of time it takes the characters t
Tara Chevrestt
I'm once again the oddball, but I didn't love this book. You say mystery, I think dark shadows, the sound of footsteps following you in an alley, people dropping dead...NOT a man with severe migraines and a woman doing well... absolutely nothing really.

This had a great start and I will say the writing style is good. The beginning has a dead husband, threatening letters, and a sexy P.I. I also loved Portia and her pug. However, once I a quarter thru, I started wondering where the plot was. Lady J
2.5 stars

I'm not sure how to review this book, I'm not even sure how I feel about it!

It's one of those book that you don't particularly like, yet you can't stop reading!

What I thought I was going to read is an entertaining romantic mystery with a smart heroine, I was prepared to love the book and rush to buy the rest in the series! I'm glad I didn't.

What I read was not very entertaining, in fact I thought it was a bit depressing. The mystery was not very well laid out and left me uninterested,

This started a bit slow for me, but once the story got going, it was anything but. I absolutely LOVED the mystery, suspense, and characters!!

On to the next one, asap!
I've heard good things about this series for a while now. I've checked it out from library at least 2 or three times but I never seemed to have time for it. It sucked me in by the first page and it had me dying to read the sequel. Fans of romance, moody historical fiction, or mysteries should all give this book a try. And if you're like me and a fan of all three it's quite a find.
Chad Sayban
It's really hard to not get hooked by a novel that begins with these two sentences:

"To say that I met Nicholas Brisbane over my husband's dead body is not entirely accurate. Edward, it should be noted, was still twitching upon the floor."

Wow! A really strong way to begin a story. Fortunately, the rest of the story remains just as strong. Silent in the Grave is the debut novel of Deanna Raybourn. Set in late 19th century London, it is also the first of a series that now numbers three centering o
Colorful and compelling characters, who are quite intriguing and mysterious, set against a well-built mystery story; what’s not to like?
The author presents us with the most original and interesting characters, who are strong, well defined, and far from the standard cardboard characters we see too often in fiction. I simply love the unconventional family March; they are so endearing and I wish I was one of them. Thanks to Hector March’s progressive thinking he has brought up his children (especia

I was desperate for something to read and picked up this book from the shelves of my local mega-pharmacy. I'm an author and literary fiction reader, but will occasionally dip into mass fiction if I'm sufficiently book-deprived. I've found that most of the national best sellers fall far short of the hype on their covers.

Silent in the Grave did not. Beautifully written from the first sentence to the last, Raybourne's debut novel could be used for teaching purposes in many
Winner of the RITA award in 2008 for Best Novel with Strong Romantic Elements, Silent in the Grave is a well-written Victorian mystery. This is exactly the kind of novel I was looking for when I realized I wanted a little romance mixed with my steady diet of mystery and fantasy stories. As I read through Earlene Fowler's excellent Benni Harper series, I knew it was the well-written relationship story between Gabe and Benni that kept me coming back for the next book. I cast about for more mysteri ...more
Aug 15, 2010 Anne rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: mature teens and adults
A mystery set in Victorian England, this first book in the Lady Julia Gray series, #1) is a fun read. I so enjoyed the part where Julia has to describe something persona about a man to someone not her husband. It had me laughing hysterically. It was not coarse or crude at all, just laughably funny.
Her husband dies and most people including her believe it is because of a heriditary heart problem. But a detective named Nicholas Brisbane feels this is not the case and he has been murdered. You can
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A sixth-generation native Texan, New York Times bestselling author Deanna Raybourn graduated from the University of Texas at San Antonio with a double major in English and history and an emphasis on Shakespearean studies. She taught high school English for three years in San Antonio before leaving education to pursue a career as a novelist. Deanna makes her home in Virginia, where she lives with h ...more
More about Deanna Raybourn...

Other Books in the Series

Lady Julia Grey (5 books)
  • Silent in the Sanctuary (Lady Julia, #2)
  • Silent on the Moor (Lady Julia, #3)
  • Dark Road to Darjeeling (Lady Julia, #4)
  • The Dark Enquiry (Lady Julia, #5)
Silent in the Sanctuary (Lady Julia, #2) Silent on the Moor (Lady Julia, #3) Dark Road to Darjeeling (Lady Julia, #4) The Dark Enquiry (Lady Julia, #5) A Spear of Summer Grass

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“To say that I met Nicholas Brisbane over my husband's dead body is not entirely accurate. Edward, it should be noted, was still twitching upon the floor.” 120 likes
“Fate is by far the greatest mystery of all.” 50 likes
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