Customer Reviews for

Lord John and the Private Matter (Lord John Grey Series)

Average Rating 3.5
( 180 )
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

6 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

insightful Georgian espionage mystery

In 1757, Major John Grey, an aristocrat concludes he must end his cousin Olivia¿s engagement to John Trevelyn because he knows the man suffers from the pox. After consulting on the delicate matter with his military superior, Colonel Quarry also assigns John to investig...
In 1757, Major John Grey, an aristocrat concludes he must end his cousin Olivia¿s engagement to John Trevelyn because he knows the man suffers from the pox. After consulting on the delicate matter with his military superior, Colonel Quarry also assigns John to investigate stolen ordnance requisitions, which unless recovered will force the English armies on the continent to make costly relocations to avoid massacres.

John begins his inquiries with the homicide of soldier Timothy O¿Connell who is the prime suspect. Evidence takes John to a whorehouse and subsequently to a gay gentleman¿s house, Lavender House that he knows intimately from five years ago. He continues to follow the trail that leads to a small specialty wine shop and from there to the murder of a wine maker wearing a dress. As he closes in on the military case, he makes major progress on the personal matter too, but does not realizing the two connect. John forces the end of Joseph¿s engagement to Olivia, but also is drugged by the man.

Though readers need to understand that this is not a romance and the likable hero has a gay encounter, the novel still is the typical Gabaldon book. The insightful Georgian espionage mystery is rich with a taste for the era, but not just the typical kind found in mid eighteenth century novels. John, who has appeared in previous novels such as THE FIERY CROSS, is a delightful hero and the support cast adds depth to the era and to the suspense including a rather surprising heterosexual love story.

Harriet Klausner

posted by harstan on December 9, 2008

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Most Helpful Critical Review

7 out of 15 people found this review helpful.

Gay Porn says it all

I have loved every single one of Diana Gabaldon's books, but have to say I was so disappointed and sad at the content in this book. I find Lord John as a character, interesting, but I could use a little less of the grafic gay encounters Lord John encounters. I would n...
I have loved every single one of Diana Gabaldon's books, but have to say I was so disappointed and sad at the content in this book. I find Lord John as a character, interesting, but I could use a little less of the grafic gay encounters Lord John encounters. I would never recommend this book or any in its series, and would like a refund of my money. I should have read them in the bookstore and saved my money.

posted by 470384 on November 29, 2008

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 29, 2008

    Gay Porn says it all

    I have loved every single one of Diana Gabaldon's books, but have to say I was so disappointed and sad at the content in this book. I find Lord John as a character, interesting, but I could use a little less of the grafic gay encounters Lord John encounters. I would never recommend this book or any in its series, and would like a refund of my money. I should have read them in the bookstore and saved my money.

    7 out of 15 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 7, 2010

    Fun, quick read

    This book took me about 16 pages to get into. I did have to re-read a few paragraphs, as my mind started to wander. After that, though, I really enjoyed the story. I enjoy Lord John as a character. He has a quick, dry wit. He is kind and considerate of others. He is intelligent and likable.

    I thought the story went along in true DG fashion, lot's of coincidences and character connexions (as it's spelled in this series). As for it being gay porn, I suppose if you consider the mildest love scene to be porn, then you shouldn't be reading DG AT ALL. The love scenes between her heterosexual couples are much more explicit than the single, short, fade to black scene in this book (I can't comment on subsequent books in this series; I haven't read them yet). Who cares about the fact that the sex in this book is "gay sex"? There is sex in DG's books. All her main characters have it. Lord John is a main character. He is gay. He has sex. Frankly, I had been feeling a bit sorry for him, as he had no love interest, just pining for Jamie Fraser all the time, poor guy. So I was actually happy for him to have got a little "action" so to speak.
    Moving on...

    As an aside, as a fan of the Outlander series I was pleased to meet Nessie for the first time with Lord John. She is introduced in the Outlander series in book 7. Dottie is also introduced here as a child. That was fun for me.
    In closing, I would not recommend this story to my 73-year-old mother (or any of DG's books, for that matter), but I do recommend it to most other historical fiction fans. It's relatively short, and easy to read. And I look forward to the next one!

    6 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 8, 2010

    Interesting

    I loved the Outlander Series and thought I would give "Lord John and the Private Matter" a chance. Even though I knew John was gay, it was still a bit uncomfortable to read about that kind of "stuff". I personally have nothing against someone who chooses that way of life, but it is also different to actually read and experience it. The story its self was very interesting though. More of a "who done it" book that was very interesting. It was fun to read about characters that were barely touched upon in the "Outlander Series" and understand who they really were. In the end I do say I rather ended up enjoying the book after all. I am still considering on whether I am going to read the next one in the series, but probably will out of morbid curiosity.

    This book is for sure not for everyone, but if you can get over the sexual preference and escapades of John you will find it a good read.

    4 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 6, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Lord John and the Private Matter

    I am a fan of Diana Gabaldon. Lord John and the Private Matter is a spin off from her Outlander Series which was recommended to me by a friend. While she has major talent and was going somewhere with this book it fell short. It seems as though it wasn't thoughtfully put together. Seemingly, Lord John is not the character we'd hoped he'd be in this book. There was an expectation to his investigative ability as he is educated and an officer, however, he came off 2D in this book. He only followed clues and was assaulted in some form or another, rather than putting clues together and solving a mystery. The plot is revealed in a run-on sentence in the end and the anti-climax is muddled. I expected more, but won't give up, I will probably read the next in this series just to see if it gets better.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2003

    Different Than Her Others and Not as Good

    I don't know if I would have given this more stars if I didn't have her Outlander series as a benchmark from which to judge this one. Additionally, one almost HAD to have read the Outlander books to really understand Private Matter (her references to Lord John's past and to Jamie Fraser, etc.); how could anyone make sense of these references without having read the Outlander books? I almost DIDN'T read Private Matter because of the incredibly bad taste I had in my mouth for Lord John due to the twisted and vile things he did to Jamie Fraser while in Ardsmuir. Nasty stuff, that. I couldn't even hazard a guess as to what Gabaldon could write about given what we already knew of John's 'character'. Curiosity won out, however, and while I've altered my views on Lord John somewhat after reading Private Matter, I still can't warm up to him. Gabladon's mediocre attempt to have us view John differently after having created a VERY vivid and specific picture of him in the Outlander series just didn't work.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 14, 2010

    Lord John is a key character in the Outlander series but is not as interesting as a main charcter on his own. While the story is well writen and keeps one interested it does not draw one in as do Gabaldon's Outlander novels.

    Lord John is a key character in the Outlander series but is not as interesting as a main charcter on his own. While the story is well writen and keeps one interested it does not draw one in as do Gabaldon's Outlander novels.

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