Lord John Grey and the Private Matter – Lord John Grey #1 – Diana Gabaldon

Lord John and the Private Matter: A Novel (Lord John Grey Book 1)

What a snoozefest!

I’m not sure anything exciting happened in this book at all. To tell the truth, I don’t even know if this book had a point at all besides showing off Diana Gabaldon’s knowledge of 18th century nobility and snobbery. I really think she was relying on her Outlander fans to love these books too but even her Outlander books got a little monotonous after a while.

Lord John Grey is a character in the Outlander series. He first appears when he is fifteen, just before the Battle of Prestonpans. John Grey is not enlisted in the British Army but he is accompanying his brother Hal who is a colonial of the 46th Regiment. While out on patrol, John sees Jamie Fraser who he recognizes from the broadsheets as a wanted man. He sees Claire with Jamie and thinks she is a noblewoman who Jamie has kidnapped so John tries to sneak up on Jamie and slit his throat to save Claire only to be out maneuvered by Jamie who then tricks John into giving up information by acting like he is going to hurt Claire. Jamie then ties John up to a tree and left him there for the British Army to find.

Later, John Grey becomes the warden of Ardsmuir Prison where Jamie is imprisoned. He falls in love with Jamie but never voices it out loud, although, Jamie is aware of it. When Ardsmuir sends all of its prisoners to the America’s as indentured servants, Lord John Grey spares Jamie and sends him to work for a nobleman and his family in England, a place called Helwater, as a groom.

Throughout the series, John and Jamie write to each other and keep up a friendship.
This series begins while Jamie is at Helwater.

John Grey is eating at the Beefsteak. While using the facilities, he discovers that the man who is betrothed to his cousin, Olivia, has a sore on his private part which means he is probably poxed (has syphilis) but John isn’t sure what to do about it. He can’t just come out and accuse the Honorable Joseph Trevelyan of being poxed, after all, he didn’t even know John had seen the sore but there is no cure for syphilis and if Trevelyan marries his cousin, she will surely become infected also. He has to come up with a way to break the engagement without ruining his cousin’s reputation.

Now, you can see where the name of the book came from and it is hilarious…at least to me and it must have been to Diana Gabaldon also.

John is also trying to solve a murder. A captain in the 46th Regiment who is believed to have stolen some important army documents has been murdered. There are a lot of suspects and different twists and turns which are sometimes hard to follow but I somehow managed even though I was bored out of my gourd for most of it. I just couldn’t get into it. I think Lord John Grey is a bit of a bore.

Besides the fact that John Grey is gay, there isn’t anything else really that interesting about him. Yes, he’s a good guy and does what is right but that doesn’t make him interesting.

Despite this book being so boring, I went ahead and downloaded the next book in the series. I want so much to like this series that I’m going to give it another chance. We’ll see how it goes.

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