elisa_rolle (elisa_rolle) wrote,

Top 100 Gay Novel: The Price of Temptation by M.J. Pearson

I’m deeply regretting to have not read this book before, this is exactly like one of those historical romances I eagerly read when I was a teenager and so loved. There is the dashing scoundrel, and as often it happens he has a wise old aunt who is holding the purse strings; she deeply love her rake of a nephew but she wants for him to settle down for the good of the title but above all for his own happiness. There is of course a vain lover, more interested to that purse than to the gentleman, and there is of course the innocent soul who happens to step into the mouse’s trap totally unaware. And in this case mouse is the appropriate definition since this is like Stephen, the Earl of St. Joseph, nicknamed Jamie, the shy historian who was supposed to be his nephews’ tutor before the tragedy of losing them and their parents to a shipwreck. Jamie insinuates not only in Stephen’s house and in the life of all the household, but with his good heart and innocent behaviour, also in the heart of the handsome earl, even if the man has a lover, Julian, the Golden One, that is way prettier than the little country mouse Jamie.

As often it happens, there is also a secret in Jamie’s past that makes him probably more suitable to Stephen than Julian, and if this wasn’t an homosexual affair, it would have probably ended in Stephen marrying Jamie, but as it’s, what we can expect is for them to live happily, and scandalously, ever after in sin. How that is possible in England at the end of the XVIII century? (the date you can guess from a reference to the madness of King George and the taking of the throne of the Regent) the answer is simple: wealth and nobless. Not only Stephen has a title, his aunt is also one of the wealthiest women of England and manage the purse strings of more family other than Stephen’s; when the ton tries to ostracize his nephew, she is ready to emulate Jesus Christ and his “who sinned cast the first stone” speech, letting the people be aware she knows secrets and she is ready to spread them.

Once you overcome the homosexuality is illegal issue, what remains to the author is two men and their love story, mostly played inside the walls of Stephen’s house, and so in a safe environment. It’s true that Jamie entered that environment unaware of Stephen’s particular bed choices, but the author is also ready to let the reader know he is not so against the idea; now don’t get me wrong, Jamie is completely, totally innocent, and he wouldn’t dare to face Stephen with his sexual preferences, but upon witnessing Stephen’s encounter with his lover, Jamie remembers how he had feelings for a young seminarist, feelings that were quite similar to what he should have felt instead for a young girl. With such realization slowly comes also another epiphany, he can easily fall in love for mylord, if only that was not an impossible dream: Jamie doesn’t want to end being the plaything of a lord, and if he loves a man there is no other chance.

I really enjoy Jamie’s character but also Stephen; he was not your usual scoundrel, he didn’t redeem only for the sake, of the chance to fall into bed with Jamie, Stephen was already a good man, enough to look at his strange household, made up from castoff of other noble families or worst, from the streets. Jamie fits well among them since he basically assumes the role of the lady of the house, a role he fulfil perfectly in each aspect if not the one of sharing the bed of the lord of the house. Role even Stephen starts to wonder why it’s not covered by the lad, so that he starts a slow, but steady work of breaking down the young man’s defences.

Amazon: The Price of Temptation
Amazon Kindle: The Price of Temptation
Paperback: 208 pages
Publisher: Seventh Window Publications (September 30, 2005)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0971708932
ISBN-13: 978-0971708938

M.J. Pearson's In the Spotligh post: http://elisa-rolle.livejournal.com/861660.html

Reading List: http://www.librarything.com/catalog_bottom.php?tag=reading list&view=elisa.rolle
Tags: author: m.j. pearson, genre: historical, length: novel, review, theme: breeches rippers, theme: virgins, top 100 gay novels list

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