Lord John and the Hand of the Devils : Lord John

  • by Diana Gabaldon
  • Narrated by Jeff Woodman
  • Series: Lord John
  • 9 hrs and 41 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Diana Gabaldon, the number-one New York Times best-selling author of the Outlander saga and a Quill Award winner, delivers a treat for her many fans - a collection of three novellas starring the ever-popular Lord John Grey.In these tales, Lord John vows to avenge a murder, investigates a terrifying "night-hag" on the battlefields of Europe, and discovers treason in His Majesty's ranks.

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What the Critics Say

"Gabaldon brings an effusive joy to her fiction." (Publishers Weekly)
"Gabaldon's strengths are on full display....Deftly written, pleasantly concise stories about the ghosts of desire, each with its own discrete merits." (Kirkus Reviews)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Lord John Grey comes to life

John Grey, a seemingly minor character encountered by the main protagonists of Diana Gabaldon's Outlander series, becomes a central character on his own in a series of short stories and books. He is a soldier, a gentleman, a noble man (in the original sense of the word), a sodomite, and an altogether human hero - often dragged into the heart of 18th century intrigues during the time surrounding the 7 Years War (French and Indian War to the Americans) in the years between the Scottish Jacobite Rising of 1745 and the American Revolution in 1776.

Readers of this series might give the Outlander series a miss, but you will lose out on serveral interactions between John and the Frasers that give a richer view of the character. The Outlander novels are a whopping 40 hours each on average, where LJ reads range between 1 and 14 hours.

You should definitely not read the Lord John series out of sequence to itself, which is easy to do accidentally since chronologically it alternates between shortstories and full length novels. Hand of the Devils contains three of the four current short stories, and while they are in order in this collection, make references to events in Private Matter and Brotherhood which leave the reader wanting to know what the heck happened though it does not have an immediate impact on the story.

As of October 2010, the order to read Lord John in is:
Hellfire (Hand of Devils); Private Matter (novel); Succubus (Hand of Devils); Brotherhood of the Blade(novel); Haunted Soldier (Hand of Devils); Custom of the Army (Warriors, Anthology); Scottish Prisoner (novel not yet released).
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- Teahouse Fox

A small plate of savories

Highly recommended as an appetizing complement to the Outlander series. These three stories fill in a wealth of details about Lord John Greys's life and character. I don't know how interesting I would find them as stand alone works, but they provide backstory for one of my favorite personalities in the Outlander series. Plus they contain lots of clues and context for the longer Lord John books.

As usual with Diana Gabaldon there is a wealth of historic detail and some sly humor, with the added twist of the mysteries to be solved. The style of the writing is quite different from that in the Outlander main series - like fine claret as opposed to scotch whiskey, perhaps? Both appeal to me.

That being said, the final story 'Hand of Devils' does feel like it could easily be twice as long and better for it; I wanted to know more about some of the characters who remained undeveloped. Still it does tie up some of the loose ends from Brotherhood of the Blade (and will make a lot more sense if you have read that book).

I find Jeff Woodman's nuanced reading delightful, he brings the varied cast of characters to life - particularly Grey and his loyal, long suffering valet Tom Byrd. I've listened to these more than once in the past year, and enjoyed picking up on things I missed the first time.
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- Dina

Book Details

  • Release Date: 01-31-2008
  • Publisher: Recorded Books