1642, England: David Caverly's strict father has brought home the quiet, puritanical Jonathan Graie to help his dreamer of a son work the family forge. With war brewing in Parliament, the demand for metal work increases as armies are raised. The fair David is drawn to his father's new apprentice. And though his father treats them both as if they were brothers, David's feelings toward the shy Jonathan develop as they hide their growing physical relationship. Until the fateful moment when local gossips force David's father to ...
1642, England: David Caverly's strict father has brought home the quiet, puritanical Jonathan Graie to help his dreamer of a son work the family forge. With war brewing in Parliament, the demand for metal work increases as armies are raised. The fair David is drawn to his father's new apprentice. And though his father treats them both as if they were brothers, David's feelings toward the shy Jonathan develop as they hide their growing physical relationship. Until the fateful moment when local gossips force David's father to banish him, to protect the family name. Freed, directionless, and whimsical, David is eager to experience the drama and excitement of war, and follows two soldiers headed for battle, but the reality is a harsh awakening for his free-spirited nature. Seizing the opportunity to desert, David heads to London to lead a secret life, unaware that Jonathan too has left the forge in search of him. Lost and lonely, the vulnerable Jonathan quickly falls in with the Witchfinders, a group of extremists who travel the country conducting public trials of women suspected of witchcraft. Jonathan is drawn to the charismatic Michael, finally embracing a cause for truth so wholeheartedly, he doesn't recognize the danger--physical and emotional--that Michael represents. For the fanatic puritan is desperate to purge Jonathan of his memories of David in any manner possible....
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Good. Spine creases, wear to binding and pages from reading. May contain limited notes, underlining or highlighting that does affect the text. Possible ex library copy, that'll have the markings and stickers associated from the library. Accessories such as CD, codes, toys, may not be included.
Erastes is a first class historical novelist by any measure, and this is a worthy follow-up to her first novel Standish. She gives me a vivid experience of the characters David and Jonathan and the world of the English Civil Wars. I agree with the reviewer who found the cover misleading. This is not to say that Erastes does not supply in good measure what readers of M/M romances expect. It's just that she provides so much more in the way of atmosphere, fictional craft, and depth of characterization. The love making between the characters comes from who they are, not from some genre formula. (A caveat for readers who might be squeamish about depictions of sadomasochism: the chapter dealing with Jonathan's "initiation" is rough going. Erastes is not afraid to venture into the very depths of human depravity and look it straight in the eye.)
I would have liked to have had more about how Jonathan got from his disillusionment with the witch-hunters to his apparently high level position with the Commonwealth. The man who writes poetry that sounds for all the world like Andrew Marvell has made a truly monumental journey from the naive Puritan lad we met in the first pages of the book. I would gladly have hung on for another 50 or so pages to find out how he got that way after he parted company with the witch hunters. Maybe Erastes will grace us with another book about a Puritan poet of such emotional and spiritual depth. The seventeenth century is rich in possible models for such a character.
I will further venture that Erastes has it in her to become an historical novelist on a par with Mary Renault. She has moved to the top of my list of novelists for whom I eagerly await their next book.
Jan 31, 2010
I got this book thinking it would be an ordinary erotic romance. I didn't expect much more than a quick plot and saucy scenes. To my surprise, the book captured me on the first chapter and I HAD to buy it. It was by far, anything from disappointment. It was from this book I fully understand the meaning "Never Judge a book by its cover". The cover does not do the story justice; though this only my opinion as I did not find the cover very attractive.
Erastes wrote graciously and with full depth to such incredible characters who acted and loved realistically with each step they took. I found myself so involved and in love with the characters and their lives- I actually wept with a few dramatic scenes. Only one other book was sad enough to make me shed a few tears.
I have read very little books that have characters like David, Jonathon, Tobias, Haldine, and Michael that literally erupt before your eyes and come to life. The characters in this book did just that. Even the insignifigant characters like Chistoper and Stephan seemed to be so brilliantly thought up.
With each new chapter you watched Erastes Characters grow so vividly from young, vibrant boys to grown men- hardened by unbelievable suffering in which you literally end up suffering along with them. Erastes enthralls you into her world of 17th century England with such imagery and in depth symbolism and the sweetest romances imaginable.
This book is highly recommended, and I expect to buy more copies to send to my friends! Its worth its weight in gold.
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