Dead and Buried gets a starred review!

Dead and Buried, the 9th Benjamin January book, received a starred review from Publisher’s Weekly in last week’s fiction roundup. In case this link goes away, I’m posting the full review here:

Dead and Buried: A Benjamin January Mystery Barbara Hambly. Severn, $28.95 (256p) ISBN 978-0-7278-6867-1

Sorrow, grief, and pain pervade Hambly’s outstanding ninth Benjamin January mystery (after 2004’s Dead Water), set in New Orleans during the summer of 1836. Trapped by poverty and the color of his skin, January, a free black who trained in France as a physician, goes undercover as a piano player in a high-class bordello to investigate possible embezzlement from the Faubourg Tremé Free Colored Militia and Burial Society. The discovery of a white man’s body in a coffin meant for one of the FTFCMBS’s members propels the justice-seeking January on a harrowing journey full of disturbing revelations to save a young English aristocrat from the gallows. Hambly’s sure hand with historical detail, her convincing characterizations, and her view of the slave trade that debased both blacks and their white masters raise this tale of violence, deceit, and humiliation to a must-read commentary on human frailty and redeeming human friendship. (June)

As always, comments and reader reviews are welcome – just comment on this post. Happy weekend, everyone!


17 responses to “Dead and Buried gets a starred review!”

  1. I am soooo very delighted to see the Benjamin January series is continuing! I was dismayed when I thought there would be no more. I am in the process of ordering “Dead and Buried”. I look forward to the two remaining recent ones and any others that come along. I also look forward to more Abigail Adams series. I have read “The Ninth Daughter” and will be reading the next two!
    Wonderful descriptions; the thoughts and images just unfold as if one was watching a video!

    Thank you!

  2. just read “Dead and Buried” twice thru. .. it was a great read. my only “complaint” is I do love Minou and would have loved a bit more of her. (I always think Benjamin’s mother must look like the beautiful and ageless Lena Horne.) I love this series. It does make one think of those terrible injustices and hope they are over and done with.

  3. I have been trying to purchase Dead and Buried for a while now. I ordered through Barnes and Noble and my order was cancelled after a wait of several weeks. I am now waiting to see if Amazon can fulfill my order. Should I give up hope?

    Ms. Hambly, you are a wonderful writer with an unparalleled ability to establish mood, character and scene. I love the Benjamin January series and have been waiting for this new book literally for years. I hope that I get to read it soon!

  4. I’m coming in late but I wanted to let you know how very much I enjoyed “Dead and Buried.” I went back and read through most of my Benjamin January books (something I do more often than I’d care to admit) so I’d be ready when it popped up at my library. (I’ll be buying the paperback.) Loved finding out more about Hannibal, loved seeing Lt. Shaw again, loved the way you always seem to make familiar territory seem new from a new point of view. I recommend your books to absolutely everyone I can, especially the January series. Thanks for so much reading pleasure!

  5. I’m not surprised at the great review; it was a fantastic book.

  6. Just read “Dead And Buried” and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I only have one tiny little nit to pick. It surprised me to see this because Ms. Hambly usually does such thorough research. At one point she says that the Countess’ desk drawer contains a “Prussian needle gun”. The “needle” gun was a breechloading, turnbolt military rifle, so named because of the long, narrow firing pin that had to penetrate the paper cartridge and push through the powder charge to impact the primer at the base of the bullet. It was first made in the 1840’s, was adopted by the Prussian Army and was noted for its use in the Franco-Prussian War. That would have to be one heckuva big drawer! Other than that, one heckuva book, though.

  7. Thanks for writing another Benjamin book. I have missed his adventures. I inhaled D&B Monday.
    I have enjoyed your other work too and look forward to the next adventure of Abigail Adams.
    I also have fond memories of snorting and laughing through Bride of the Rat God…
    Best wishes.

    thanks for the nice comment!

  8. I have been reading and enjoying Barbara Hambly since the early ’80’s when I worked for Doubleday & Co. Barbara, you just keep getting better and better!

    I have actually just finished “Dead and Buried” and it is everything I want in a Barbara Hambly book — great plot, well-crafted characterization, a real feeling of place, intelligent dialogue and the interplay and irony of surfaces and deeper realities. I must now admit that I dispared of ever seeing more of Benjamin January when I saw New Orleans under water after Katrina. I’m so glad the series has survived and based on this current book, would seem to have a lot further to go.

    Although I guessed part of what was going on, given the careful hints, delightfully, I didn’t get it all until it was revealed at the end. Thank you so much for a great read.

  9. Hi!

    I have a Nook, the Barnes & Noble e-reader. Will Dead and Buried become available for it, as the last four of the Benjamin January books are? (For that matter, how about the Darwath or Sun Wolf books?!)

    I’ve been a January fan for a long time, it is so great to return to his world!

    Thank you,
    Storme Maynard

  10. I use a Sony ereader, I like that I can choose where to go buy my books, and I own them, not that I have to go through one source like Amazon, and not that they can take my books back away later. I’m happiest when books are available as .epub files. I buy books sometimes from the Sony store, and often from Baen books, and here and there elsewhere when I can find them. And oh, I’d love to get the whole series on ebook!

  11. Oh wonderful! Is there an ebook available? (And if so, oh I hope hope it isn’t one of the ones restricted to only kindle!) I’d like to buy it as soon as it’s available – I’m having enough eye problems that being able to enlarge text is priceless.

    The publisher doesn’t seem to have an e-book of Dead and Buried available at present, sorry. I’ll post something if that changes. For all you ebook readers out there – what devices are you reading books on? What formats work well for you, and where are you buying/obtaining your books from? If you don’t want to post here, just send an email to info (at) barbarahambly (dot) com. Thanks! Deb

    1. I just read Dead and Buried and it prompted a re-read of the whole series. I have a Kindle and have the last 4 in that format. But it would be great if the first 4, as well as Dead and buried, were available for the Kindle!


  12. I have been tracking the sale of the newest Benjamin January book since I read Barbara’s blog many months ago. Imagine my delight when I finally received my copy from Amazon and found it dealt with the Treme section of NOLA. I had just finished watching the second episode of the tremendous HBO series, Treme. This adds a wonderful depth to the series as I received both a then and now experience. Please continue to write these wonderful novels.

  13. Thank you, thank you. thank you!!! I absolutely adore the Benjamin January series, and
    I despaired of ever reading another one of “his” books. Now I am greatly encouraged
    to hear that Severn has given a two book deal. I have lived in the Deep South all my
    life, and I am very familiar with the New Orleans/Louisiana area. You do a magnificent
    job of capturing the color and the ambiance of the place and the time. Thank you so
    much, Barbara, for continuing this wonderful series. Anne

  14. I love everything you write and have even read Quirinal Hill!
    What I’m wondering/hoping is that you can get some (some means ALL) of your older fantasies back in print or ebook of some kind. I own copies of everything but they are falling apart and smell like old book. (I can’t read them, they make me sneeze.) Lulu would work for hardcopy and there are several options for ebooks. Please, please, please!
    Thanks and keep writing.

    Thanks for your comment, I know there are others who feel the same way. I know that Barbara is looking into doing something along these lines, and promise that I’ll will post information about ebooks when and if it becomes available! There are some medium-older books of hers (including the dragon series and some of the Benjamin January books, as well as the Star Trek books, which are worth a read if you even remotely like Star Trek!) available currently. Take care – Deb

  15. I was sorry to read Barbara Hambly has stopped the Sun Wolf and Starhawk series. I really enjoyed them and was hoping for many more. In the last The Dark Hand of Magic Sunwolf, Starhawk and Moggy were starting on a new adventure and the series quit. I hate when authors do that. I think they should kill the charaters off or let them live happly ever after.

    Oh Well I’m also a fan of Jordans Wheel of Time Series and died on us before the final book of the series.

    Well, fortunately, Barbara’s not dead, and still has plans for that series, so don’t despair yet! In most cases, what the author wants is completely secondary to what the publisher or agents want or think will sell (to put it more directly: Barbara would be happy to continue writing in that series). Just as a side note, I don’t know if you’ve read the latest Wheel of Time book, but I think the new guy actually does better Jordan than Jordan – the plot finally started to decoagulate and move along a bit.

  16. Many thanks for posting this, Deb; I’m anxious to read it!

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