In the sordid streets of Victorian London, unwanted desire flares between two bitter enemies brought together by a deadly secret.
Crusading journalist Nathaniel Roy is determined to expose spiritualists who exploit the grief of bereaved and vulnerable people. First on his list is the so-called Seer of London, Justin Lazarus. Nathaniel expects him to be a cheap, heartless fraud. He doesn’t expect to meet a man with a sinful smile and the eyes of a fallen angel—or that a shameless swindler will spark his desires for the first time in years.
Justin feels no remorse for the lies he spins during his séances. His gullible clients simply bore him. Hostile, disbelieving, utterly irresistible Nathaniel is a fascinating challenge. And as their battle of wills and wits heats up, Justin finds he can’t stop thinking about the man who’s determined to ruin him.
But Justin and Nathaniel are linked by more than their fast-growing obsession with one another. They are both caught up in an aristocratic family’s secrets, and Justin holds information that could be lethal. As killers, fanatics, and fog close in, Nathaniel is the only man Justin can trust—and, perhaps, the only man he could love.
The Meta Details:
Length: 250 Pages
Publication Date: June 06, 2017
Genre: Historical Romance, mm romance, mystery
Content Level: Adult
Pearl Clutching Content: Grifting, bamboozling, fake spiritualism, and sex
Trigger Warnings: Mentions of previous abuse, kidnapping, assault, and attempted murder
Featuring: HISTORICAL QUEER BOYS!!
Recommended for: Everyone who enjoys historicals, romance, or mystery.
Rating: Must read
Ginny Lurcock’s Thoughts: I haven’t even finished reading the book, I have something like two pages left, and I’m already skipping around and singing in an utterly obnoxious fashion. Why? Because I GET TO READ ABOUT THE RELUCTANT EARL AND MARK IN THE NEXT STORY.
I may faint I’m so excited. Someone get the smelling salts…
Okay, but seriously now… (and because I went back, finished the last two pages, shoved my fist in my mouth and screamed and now my knuckles hurt…)
K.J. Charles is a master of historical fiction. Set in an era when any romance was at risk of scandal at best, Charles spins tales that pluck at your nerves until they vibrate. All without pandering to titillation and fetish. Combine this with a devotion to the details of the time period and dash of mystery and you’ve got a winner.
Charles always crafts winners.
So obviously I went into An Unnatural Vice knowing that I would be entertained. What I did not expect was that Justin Lazarus would become my favorite of Charles’s characters. Possibly the favorite character I’ve read all year. A queer con-man known as the Seer of London who has all kinds of sharp edges because of previous abuse. With a quick wit and a sharp tongue.
Just cut out my heart and take it. I have no need for it anymore.
And Nathaniel Roy… oh I bled for Nathaniel Roy. The pain that drove him, his drive, his determination… If there was anyone I could have picked for Justin, it would be Roy.
Throw in a dash of Clem and Rowley and the promise of Mark and his reluctant Earl (and you tricky devil, Charles, with the long lost Earl’s identity. Love that twist.) and you’ve got an award-worthy novel to kick off your summer reading binge.
No really. I cannot recommend this book enough. Quick passed, intriguing, intense, funny, light in places and dark in others it hits all the high notes for me with none of the crushing lows.
*Please note: while you can read this without having read An Unseen Attraction, I recommend starting there as the events overlap and are intertwined.
A complimentary copy of this book was provided in exchange for a fair and honest review via Netgalley.