Some things should stay buried.
Repressed scholar Percival Endicott Whyborne has two skills: reading dead languages and hiding in his office at the Ladysmith Museum. After the tragic death of the friend he secretly loved, he’s ruthlessly suppressed any desire for another man.
So when handsome ex-Pinkerton Griffin Flaherty approaches him to translate a mysterious book, Whyborne wants to finish the job and get rid of the detective as quickly as possible. Griffin left the Pinkertons following the death of his partner, hoping to start a new life. But the powerful cult that murdered Glenn has taken root in Widdershins, and only the spells in the book can stop them. Spells the intellectual Whyborne doesn’t believe are real.
As the investigation draws the two men closer, Griffin’s rakish charm threatens to shatter Whyborne’s iron control. When the cult resurrects an evil sorcerer who commands terrifying monsters, can Whyborne overcome his fear and learn to trust? Will Griffin let go of his past and risk falling in love? Or will Griffin’s secrets cost Whyborne both his heart and his life?
Percival Whyborne “Ival” is the master of 13 plus languages, he’s a shy, retiring, gay, virgin who is asked to translate some important documents for Griffin, an ex Pinkerton agent on the case of a murder.
The story unfolds with bits of the paranormal being involved in the case: curses, the occult, monsters and more. The mystery is absolutely the biggest part of this story, but it is closely entwined with the blossoming romance between Griffin and Ival.
In the end, the mystery wraps up and we have a HEA for our heroes, but the series continues undoubtedly putting our lovers into hot water, once again.
So, I read this to challenge myself and because it has gotten so many rave reviews. I will tell you this: it is an amazing story, rich with characters, world building, romance and even some horror/monster elements. There is no doubt that Jordan L Hawk is a master writer and story creator.
As for me… it wasn’t really my cup of tea. I got distracted by the language. Griffin calls Whyborne “my dear” all the time and it caught me out of the story each time. I am not one who cares for mysteries much and the mystery definitely occupies a lot of the story.
I didn’t mind the historical aspect – per se- but it’s not my favorite setting and so I kept being distracted by the “truths” of that time period and wondering just how this would all really play out… which is silly because it’s clearly fantasy… but that’s just how my brain works.
I liked the audiobook version though the narrator wouldn’t be my favorite. He doesn’t do a lot to make each voice unique though he tries hard to infuse some emotion and “acting” in with the story telling and certainly doesn’t detract from the overall experience.
I guess, for me, I won’t be reading more (or listening) to this series, not because of the characters – they were amazing and the love story they shared was really touching and sweet and at times very, very hot! – but because the historical parts and the mystery parts are just not my preference.
I have to give it excellent marks for writing and creativity and overall entertainment 4 of 5 stars.
(Copy purchased for review)