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The heart breaks but does not change.
An Enlightenment Story
Captain Iain Sinclair. Perfect son, perfect soldier, hero of Waterloo. A man living a lie. The only person who really knows him is his childhood friend, scientist James Hart. But they’ve been estranged since Iain brutally destroyed their friendship following a passionate encounter.
Iain is poised to leave the King’s service to become an undercover agent in India. Before he leaves his old life behind, he’s determined to reconcile with James. An invitation to a country house party from James’s sister provides the perfect opportunity to pin the man down.
James has loved Iain all his life, but his years of accepting crumbs from Iain’s table are over. Forgiving Iain is one thing—restoring their friendship is quite another.
In the face of James’s determined resistance, Iain is forced to confront his reasons for mending the wounds between them. And accept the possibility that James holds the key to his heart’s desire—if only he has the courage to reach for it.
Warning: Contains a dashing military hero with one weakness—a scientist who feels their chemistry in every cell of his body. Kissing in the rain, skinny dipping, and emotional flashbacks. Huzzah!
If you’ve read Joanna’s Enlightenment Series, you might agree with me that she writes amazing Historical Romance. Just, brilliant, and beautiful. Her prose is lovely and engaging and her characters always have depth and strong voices.
Unnatural is a spin off of The Enlightenment Series, and while this, too, presesnts a love story between two men in a time where being open about desiring men was illegal, she managed to write a completely different thing, a completely different love story that is just as heartwrenching as the one of Murdo and David.
Iain and James are childhood friends. With three or four years of difference, they practically grew up together. They admire and love each other deeply, and the influence they had in each others’ lives comes across clearly.
The story is told in two times, alternating between past and present in each chapter. While I’d normally find this confusing, this actually worked perfectly well for me. I thought it was beautifully done, and that it served its purpose perfectly well: telling us their love story, and how they got to where they were now.
Having grown up and gone through different paths, the two friends only meet every once in a while when they both have time to do so. Fighting the attraction they feel for each other is difficult for our boys. Jaimes is madly in love with Iain, and he knows what he wants. He’s bold about expressing so. Iain, is a bit more confused. He struggles to believe it’s even possible to have what James wants so badly.
Both men are stubborn in their own way, and that stubborness brings them together as much as it pushes them apart at times. I loved James, but the one who stole my heart was Iain. His fears, and his need to please his father, his need to fit in, his need to do things right so he could get the forgiveness and respect of the man who gave him life, broke my heart. But his realization that he was who he was and that he needed to fight for what mattered the most for him, and his intensity as he went and fought for it, was just beautiful.
The story is angsty… That particular kind of angst that makes your heart hurt, and makes you want to be able to crawl inside the book and help the characters, that makes you want to be able to make everything better for them. But as much as angst there is also lots of love. Lots of beautiful words of love between the MCs.
We get a lovely happy ending, and this has me both happy and sad… Happy for them, sad because I don’t know if this means I’m not getting a sequel… And I WANT A SEQUEL!!!!! hahaha
I hope y’all enjoy this book… If you like historical romance, this book will suit you perfectly well. Also, this book can be perfectly read as a stand alone… but don’t do it… Read The Enligthenment Series first, only because it’s pure awesome, and because you shouldn’t go through life without knowing Murdo and falling in love with him… (Yeah, that was fan promo :P).