Title: The Soldier’s Scoundrel
Author: Cat Sebastian
Genre: M/M Historical Romance
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.
Source: Bought it
This book brings together so many good things – M/M romance, excellent period detail, opposites attract and different social strata – that I couldn’t resist it. And I’m so glad I didn’t, because not only is it well-written, with a bit of a mystery thrown in to keep things interesting, but I completely fell for the characters of both Jack and Oliver and thought they were adorable together.
Jack is big and broad and smart and rather touchy about his place in society. He was once a servant and having seen how badly the upper classes treat their workforce, he now works to right the wrongs that the law doesn’t bother with. His one hard and fast rule is that he doesn’t work for lords or aristocratic men. Until, that is, Oliver Rivington walks into his office and starts messing up his carefully formed life.
Oliver thought he knew his place in life, serving in the army, playing the expected role of the younger son of an earl. But injury put paid to that and he’s now restless, recovering and uncertain of what to do with himself. Which is why he ends up in Jack’s office, poking his nose into his sister’s business and frowning on Jack’s idea of justice. War has taught Oliver the true meaning of chaos, leaving him craving a straight forward life with rigid rules, which is just the sort of thing Jack disdains. Leaving the pair of them at an ideological impasse, especially with the undeniable attraction flaring between them and making everything even more complicated.
Jack and Oliver couldn’t be more different, and yet at the same time I could easily see why they were drawn to each other. They certainly bring out new sides in each other and make each other think. True, Oliver has a lot more thinking to do than Jack, but it’s Jack himself who seems to change – or rather soften – the most. They’re adorable together, even as they challenge expectations and take on the world.
Their romance is filled with troubles and strife, as well as sweetness and heat, and I’ll admit I wasn’t entirely convinced by certain aspects of the ending and just how these two planned to end up together. However, I still enjoyed seeing them reach the end point. The mystery plot also could have been a touch stronger, since it was mostly overwhelmed by the romance and never really held my interest. I did, however, love meeting Jack’s brother and definitely look forward to learning more about him.
Overall, I really enjoyed this. It’s romantic and historical and enjoyable throughout, with great detail (apart from the use of block instead of street) and interesting characters. With a debut this accomplished, I can’t wait to read what this author comes up with next.
The Solider’s Scoundrel is Out Now.
Visit Cat Sebastian for more details.