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Dust (Richard Jury Series #21)

Dust (Richard Jury Series #21)

3.3 35
by Martha Grimes

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A young friend pulls Scotland Yard’s Richard Jury into the life—and death—of a wealthy bachelor…

The once-charismatic Billy Maples was last seen in a club named Dust, before his murder in a trendy London hotel. Proving as inscrutable—and challenging—to Jury as the case is the beautiful chief inspecting


A young friend pulls Scotland Yard’s Richard Jury into the life—and death—of a wealthy bachelor…

The once-charismatic Billy Maples was last seen in a club named Dust, before his murder in a trendy London hotel. Proving as inscrutable—and challenging—to Jury as the case is the beautiful chief inspecting officer...

Before his death, Maples was a patron of London’s finest art galleries and caretaker of author Henry James’s house in Rye. It’s there where Jury installs Melrose Plant, who takes his job to heart, as Jury closes in on the dark secrets behind Maples’s friends and family…

Editorial Reviews

The Barnes & Noble Review
A seductive lead detective, a dark WWII secret, and the works of Henry James are all integral elements of this Martha Grimes mystery featuring aging New Scotland Yard superintendent Richard Jury.

When a wealthy bachelor is found shot to death in a hotel room in Clerkenwell, Jury is called to the scene by Benny Keegan (featured in 2001's The Blue Last), a 13-year-old boy working at the hotel who unluckily found the body. The case is taken over by Detective Inspector Lu Aguilar, a drop-dead-gorgeous investigator who practically exudes sexuality. With Jury assisting, the undertaking turns out to have numerous unforeseen complexities -- first and foremost, the unlikely duo's "volcanic" love affair. But between encounters, there are countless unanswered questions: Why was the dead man, Billy Maples, staying at Lamb House in Rye, the historic home of Henry James? What was behind his fascination with WWII? And whom was he waiting for in his hotel room the night he died?

Comparable to mysteries written by authors like Ruth Rendell, P. D. James, and Elizabeth George, Grimes's lengthy Richard Jury saga (Dust is the 21st installment) has succeeded in captivating readers for almost three decades, in large part due to her masterful character-driven plotlines and her meticulous and realistic description of present-day London and its surrounding areas. It's somehow fitting that the titles of this series are all taken from local pubs or bars; Grimes's Richard Jury novels are comfortable, familiar and always full of old -- and sometimes eccentric -- friends. Pull up a chair, grab a hot toddy, and enjoy… Paul Goat Allen
Publishers Weekly
Following hard upon the action of 2006's twisty The Old Wine Shades, Grimes's equally intricate 21st Richard Jury mystery brings the Scotland Yard superintendent to a shady London hotel to investigate the murder of wealthy bachelor Billy Maples. Jury discovers connections between the murder case and the distant past through Maples's grandfather, who served as one of Britain's top code breakers during WWII. Allusions to the literary themes of Henry James lend depth. The superintendent also encounters some major romantic complications in the form of gorgeous Det. Insp. Lu Aguilar, the lead detective on the case, and Scotland Yard pathologist Phyllis Nancy. Ably abetted by his longtime amateur colleague, Melrose Plant, Jury deftly and doggedly pursues the killer. While still several notches below P.D. James's outstanding psychological whodunits, this excellent series consistently entertains-and in a way that's accessible for newcomers. 8-city author tour. (Jan.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Scotland Yard Supt. Richard Jury is dragged into his 22nd case by the first of many children wise and meddlesome beyond their years. Because he looks taller than 13, Benny Keegan is able to talk his way first into a job as kitchen help at the Zetter, a "restaurant with rooms" in Clerkenwell, and then into pinch-hitting for room-service waiter Gilbert Snow. That's why he's the one who finds the body of Billy Maples, and that's why his old acquaintance Richard Jury, whom he telephones, joins beautiful Islington Inspector Lu Aguilar on the case. (Joining her in bed-early, often and volcanically-is Jury's own idea.) It's hard to imagine who killed inoffensive Billy, who loved Henry James and contemporary painting and who died intestate, leaving his considerable trust fund to a wealthy father who scarcely needed it. It'll be up to Jury and his foppish friend Melrose Plant, in a role that suits him unusually well this time, to connect the dots between Billy's murder, James's novels and a long-buried WWII outrage so ghastly that it turns the heat on everyone in Billy's circle, from his confidential assistant Kurt Brunner to his ex-lover Angela Riffley to a brace of relatives who look more sinister on each return visit. Series fans will welcome the return of plausible psychopath Harry Johnson (The Old Wine Shades, Feb. 2006) and several key supporting players that Grimes presents with sympathetic insight.
Library Journal
Turner's debut novel balances on the following premise: What if zombies weren't merely shambling corpses but were sentient unto themselves, with their own language, structure, and desires? Actress/narrator Eva Amurri delivers a stellar performance: her gritty voice, unemotional delivery, and clear understanding of character motives put listeners alongside her in every scene. Unfortunately, there are some massive plot holes—e.g., knowing, as they do, that the buried dead rise as zombies, wouldn't the powers that be have opted to cremate our young protagonist rather than burying her following her death in a car accident?—and the narrative requires significant suspension of disbelief. Recommended only where this genre does well. [The Ace: Berkley hc was a zombie fiction roundup selection, LJ 10/15/10.—Ed.]—Jodi L. Israel, MLS, Salt Lake City

Product Details

Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
Richard Jury Mystery , #21
Sold by:
Penguin Group
Sales rank:
File size:
513 KB
Age Range:
18 Years

Meet the Author

Martha Grimes is the bestselling author of eighteen Richard Jury mysteries and also the acclaimed fiction Foul Matter, Cold Flat Junction, Hotel Paradise, The End of the Pier, and The Train Now Departing.

Brief Biography

Washington, DC and Santa Fe, NM
Date of Birth:
May 2, 1931
Place of Birth:
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
B.A., M.A., University of Maryland

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Dust (Richard Jury Series #21) 3.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 35 reviews.
robroy More than 1 year ago
Martha Grimes comes up with some interesting plot twists, but overall the book is a disappointment. As with prior outings, the characters are not well-rounded and the affect is somehow flat. The dog, as usual, is the most interesting character. Better to read Agatha Christie, Margery Allingham, Dorothy Sayers, Ngaio Marsh, Alexander McCall Smith, or Lindsey Davis, for believable plots, engrossing characters, and settings that appear to actually be lived-in. For those wanting lush romance with their mystery, try J.D. Robb.
Guest More than 1 year ago
As I long-time fan of the Richard Jury mysteries, I am not enthusiastic about the direction the series has taken. Even Jury, by his own admittance, feels he is messing up his life, although he phrased that rather differently. In this most recent installment, Grimes writes more about her research and less about her characters. Almost entirely lost is the witty rapport we have come to expect from Melrose and his merry band at the pub, and their contributions to solving yet another of Jury¿s cases. Readers are reacquainted with characters from the past, including the human-canine partnerships of Harry and Mungo, and Benny and Sparky. Into this mix is added a new personality in the form of attractive female Inspector Lu Aguilar. Enticed, Jury joins her not just to solve the murder of a wealthy young man, but also to create a few mysteries of their own, offering readers a new insight into Richard Jury, but one I don¿t believe they will embrace. In the process of unraveling the deceptions surrounding this mystery, we revisit his previous case, bringing another encounter with Harry, along with Godel and the dead or alive cat. We also become acquainted with the writings of Henry James, perhaps more acquainted than we would wish to be, while barely skimming the surface of the real workings of Bletchley Park, an intriguing story in its own right. One reading is it for me, as I suspect it will be for most of Jury¿s fans. This book will be relegated to the bookshelf, where it will, I predict, collect dust.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Contains all of the elements that have made this series fun to read. However, at the end, I was completely left in the dark as to the motivations and even some of the details of how it all fit together. The book feels about one chapter short.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Convoluted ending leaving it very unclear what happened. Gratuitious sex, described like pornography. Very disapointing. Does not seem as if it is written by same author as previous novels.
Guest More than 1 year ago
While Marsha Grimes and the Jury series have always been favorites of mine, Dust is not up to her usual standard. There were many mistakes, such as a major piece of evidence discussed by characters at the end, yet never revealed in the plot! The ending itself is extremely confusing and vague. As someone who reads about two mystery novels a week, I was surprised to finish the book and not really know who committed the initial act that lead to the murder. I don't know if this book was written in a hurry, or just poorly done, but I regret that I spent $25. Thank goodness for Melrose and the other characters or I would have been even more disappointed! If you want to begin reading the Jury series, start further back...they've gone downhill with the last two!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I absolutely adore all of the Richard Jury novels with the exception of Dust. I had raced to the store to buy it but was so disappointed, I almost didn't want to finish the book. Who came up with the idea that Jury needs not one but two 'girlfriends' (its really all just sex)? I was heartbroken that this book was so terrible. I am really hoping that the next book will be better, I liked Jury much better when he was alone and actually intelligent instead of just sleeping with a woman he just met.
dalest More than 1 year ago
Found this book so unlike previous Richard Jury novels that if I had read this first I would never had read any of the others. The gratuitous sex makes no sense at all. The Melrose Plant crowd is almost non-existent, and the ending is the biggest disappointment of all. When I finished the book, I was so upset I actually threw it against the wall. We can only hope that Martha Grimes gets back her old style and her excitement for these characters. Otherwise I'm afraid this should be the last of the Richard Jury novels, and that would be a shame.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I am left totaly bewildered as to why and who.To read an entire book and be left with only questions at the end is frustrating to say the least.I am saddened that this book seems more of a trash novel with it's hero losing his moral standing than anything else.Why bother to read any more of Grimes series if the endings will be so confusing.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I am a huge fan of Grimes, and her Richard Jury series, but this seemed rushed and lacking in the depth and richness of her earlier books. The many wonderful characters that embellish her other Jury novels were briefly glossed over. Several major flaws, including the fact that the contents of the stomach of the victim would have been discovered during the autopsy. The person responsible for the crime, and the reason for it, were both farfetched ... Grimes is either losing her touch, had to rush to meet a deadline, or, heaven forbid, turned it over to a ghostwriter.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Usual favorite side kicks, but I don't understand why the need to make Jury a sex-god, and I was left completely confused as to the actual roles of some of the key characters in this drama. Way too many sidelines and not enough answers
harstan More than 1 year ago
In Clerkenwell, England though he is only thirteen years old, Benny Keegan looks much older so is able obtain work as a helper in the kitchen of Zetter¿s restaurant, a place with rooms. Waiter Gilbert Snow asks Benny to deliver a meal to the room of Billy Maples, but the young teen finds a corpse in the room. Benny immediately calls his friend Scotland Yard Superintendent Richard Jury. --- Islington Inspector Lu Aguilar leads the investigation into the room service homicide, but Richard forces his way on the case especially since he plans to sleep with her. Both have no problem in bed, but struggle to find a motive for murder because Billy seemed to have no enemies and though wealthy the inheritance went to his even more affluent father. With the assistance of his pal Melrose Plant, Richard tries to figure out who killed the lover of William James¿ novels only to find ties between friends and family to a WWI atrocity that still fails to explain why Billy was killed. --- In his twentieth plus appearance, Jury is at his best as he investigates the homicide in which leads prove false and he slowly peels away the mendicant masks of those close to the victim even more interesting is his attraction to Lu. Readers will appreciate his inquiries as he digs deeper into what the family and friends try to conceal from him. The whodunit leaves the romance in the DUST as this is a strong police procedural. --- Harriet Klausner
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Possible he is writing more or all .grafic sex is unusual except for the asian dect in a coma details usualyl avoided but not children in distress/attacted etc whenever unusual extra grafics at various times burst out often seemed out of place
honeygrams5 More than 1 year ago
Story from England that involves all the friends of Jury. The murder seems a simple, but jury and friends find that the crime is more difficult and the plot thickens as they find a track to World War II. The plot leads too a cafe called "dust". See if you can solve the murder before they do. A nice weekend reading.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love 90% of her books and Richard Jury series but this one dragged and gave too much unwanted info . Not up to standard.
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CharlieParks More than 1 year ago
I've read just about all of Grimes novels and I was real happy with "Dust". It is an easy read and made an excellent companion for our trip to the beach. I would recommend this book if you enjoy a mystery.
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bookloverSM More than 1 year ago
Am a great fan of Martha Grimes and her Richard Jury series. I have them on my shelf for re-reads!