An absolute cracker of a Shakespearean romp romance
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
This is a belter of a Shakespearean era romp through the court of King James I & VI and has some of the most hilarious period appropriate insults I’ve ever read.
It’s also a new adult tale of enemies to lovers whose passionate dislike for each other is roundly grounded in a much more timeless attraction than hate.
Both David and Jacob are sweetly drawn characters, with Jacob’s naivety being perfectly matched in David’s street awareness and much harder upbringing.
The setting – of London’s different companies of players, the dawning of the age of organised theatre and of Shakespeare’s Globe – is a great narrative choice as it takes the reader through the stews and backstreets of the City and the characters that inhabit them.
The romance itself is period and age appropriate, with fumbled kisses and exploration at first, rather than rushing straight into a full on sexual relationship, although that comes in time as their feelings tumble deeper.
Their animosity becomes a cautious friendship and then turns into a genuine affection and love.
Enjoy the sights, sounds and atmosphere of the South Bank, the City of London and Fleet Street at a time in history when the English Court flourished and great men were treading the boards at The Globe.
It’s loosely tied to the wider Crofton series, with brief appearances from the Earl of Crofton and his actor lover Sebastian Hewell, but works beautifully as a standalone and an excellent historical period piece.
While Beta reading this for Rebecca, I became completely enthralled by the adventures of the King’s Men under Master Burbage as they bickered and fretted over roles and the wider responsibilities of living an actor’s life.
#ARC kindly received from the author in return for an honest and unbiased review