London, 1757, brothels, molly-houses, a dead soldier, spies, an Irish apothecary, treason, adultery, a woman in a green dress (or is it a man?), an escape upon the high seas, and a gay man as the lead character....how could I not read this book!
Lord John has made a shocking discovery while using the privy at a gentleman’s club. The man his cousin is betrothed to has a sore on his “private member”. Shocked and worried about a resulting scandal in his family, Lord John makes it his mission to confront the Honourable Joseph Trevelyan. However, being a major in His Majesty’s army, Lord John is called upon to investigate a fellow soldier’s death and possible act of treason. Investigating both matters at once, Lord John is led from “the drawing rooms of the nobility” to the seedy streets of London and a molly-house he frequented in his not so distant past. He finds himself in the midst of treachery and murder where two mysteries suddenly entwine themselves, both of which he is determined to solve.
Diana Gabaldon is an amazing author whose research is so impeccable that she sweeps you into the adventure with her rich, vivid descriptions. Those who loved the Outlander series will surely enjoy the plights of Lord John, although you will miss Jamie and Claire. However, since Lord John is in love with Jamie, he does think of the Scottish hunk in several spots throughout the book. Here is one such thought:
“Grey took comfort in the imagined vision – a long-legged man striding over the high fells of the Lake District, face turned up toward sun and scudding cloud, wind blowing through the richness of his auburn hair, plastering shirt and breeches tight against a lean, hard body.”(pg.14)Yes, my Lord, I miss him too!
It was interesting to get a closer look into the character of Lord John, a gay man who always acts honourably and with a strong loyalty to his family and country. Always the gentleman, he is described as a lean, handsome man, whose sense of humour is revealed in his banter with others and with himself throughout the book. However, there is another side to this nobleman, which we find out as we enter the seedier parts of London’s night life where pieces of his past are revealed. True fans of Diana Gabaldon’s style, depth and wit will be rewarded with a great story where seemingly separate events are intricately and cleverly woven together. If history mixed with a mystery is your thing, you will not be disappointed with this tale.