Oliver has recently ended his commission with the military and all he wants is to live life in an orderly fashion that obeys all the laws of good and decent society. He saw what lawlessness was like in war he’s desperate to avoid it now that he’s home. Jack had a rough upbringing and it’s made him cynical and distrustful of the upper classes. Jack believes in doing whatever it takes to survive and his slightly outside the law business practices are not up for judgment.
I’ll start by saying that I rarely read historical romance because I’m just not interested in past worlds and ways, particularly the Regency and Victorian era. But this book was very highly recommended so I thought I’d give it a shot. A wonderful surprise and truly a big step out of my usual reading but I’m glad I took the chance. I loved Cat Sebastian’s writing and her pace was spot on for me. There was plenty going on in the story and I never felt like it was slow.
I really enjoyed the opposites attract and class differences issues between Jack and Oliver. I also liked Jack’s work as a pseudo-investigator and the mystery that the stolen letters added to the story. It was a unique backdrop to bring these two very different characters together and keep them together while they worked out their feelings for each other.
Jack was your perfect rogue hero, with a shady reputation but a genuinely good heart. He’s useD to relying only on himself and he has certain ways he likes to accomplish his goals and he’s certainly jaded when it comes to the ton. But even with all his blustering it was really sweet to see how he came to care for Oliver and want to help him whenever necessary. And even though he got involved with someone from the upper classes when he knew he shouldn’t, he always strove to keep his dignity and not be ashamed for who or what he was.
Oliver himself was also an excellent hero in a slightly more stuffy way — at least at first. He’s lived with the chaos of war so now he wants things orderly and in his control and there’s just no way he’s going to control Jack. Oliver probably had the most growth in the book because he really had to learn to accept what Jack did and understand that sometimes things aren’t so black and white. I also liked his shyer demeanor when it came to the more intimate parts of their relationship and I loved when he really let his wicked side come out.
••• Book Details •••
The Turners #1 • Romance, LGBTQ+, Historical • Avon • September 20, 2016
A scoundrel who lives in the shadows…Jack Turner grew up in the darkness of London’s slums, born into a life of crime and willing to do anything to keep his belly full and his siblings safe. Now he uses the tricks and schemes of the underworld to help those who need the kind of assistance only a scoundrel can provide. His distrust of the nobility runs deep and his services do not extend to the gorgeous high-born soldier who personifies everything Jack will never be.
A soldier untarnished by vice…After the chaos of war, Oliver Rivington craves the safe predictability of a gentleman’s life-one that doesn’t include sparring with a ne’er-do-well who flouts the law at every turn. But Jack tempts Oliver like no other man has before. Soon his yearning for the unapologetic criminal is only matched by Jack’s pleasure in watching his genteel polish crumble every time they’re together. Two men only meant for each other.