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Genre: Historical M/M

Ambrose Standish's father was cheated out of his great estate by the father of Rafe Goshawk, but now his poverty and his longing for the Great House forces him to swallow his pride and enter Rafe's employ as a tutor for his son. Ambrose is a beautiful young man in delicate health, and Rafe is a practiced seducer and breaker of hearts, who determines to have Ambrose, despite Ambrose's hatred of him. But things don't go at all to plan and soon both of them are swept up in an epic and sometimes tragic love story, which takes them from the heights of high society to the depths of Newgate prison.

Epic is the right word for this. Despite the pace of the writing, which sweeps you forward almost breathlessly, the story takes in a huge variety of people and places, takes you from despair to hope to despair again, and then to a bittersweet resolution which I found perfect. And I enjoyed very much seeing the Regency novel's fair and innocent heroine as a man. It added a sort of ironic undertone to the whole thing, which picked up its grimness and flair. This is a novel, which isn't to be read as a light pick-me-up, but if you savor it slowly, it's hauntingly good.

Book Blurb for Standish

A great house, a family dispossessed. A sensitive young man, a powerful landowner, and the epic love that springs up between them.

Ambrose Standish is a studious and fragile young man with dreams of regaining the great house his grandfather lost in a card game, but when Rafe Goshawk returns from the continent to claim the estate, their meeting sets them on a path of desire and betrayal which threatens to tear both of their worlds apart.

Set in the post-Napoleonic years of the 1820's, Standish is a tale of these two men, and how the relationships they make affect their journey through Europe and through life.

Painting a picture of homosexuality in Georgian England, illegal as it was and punishable by death, at heart it is a simple love story and the tale of one man's discoveries of his sexuality and his true feelings for the man who released it.

Night Owl Reviews Jun, 2007 5.00