Thursday, June 22, 2017

Patron by C.B. Lewis

Theodore Wentworth, who possesses little more than a sharp and well-educated mind, is trying to solicit a sponsor for his studies of Greek antiquity by performing recitations at gatherings of collectors. Desperate for luck and better skills in oratory, in jest, he places a coin at the feet of a statue of Hermes. It seems like coincidence when his fortune turns and a gentleman calling himself Alexander becomes his benefactor. Despite his friend John teasing him about it, Theodore continues to offer tokens to Hermes and sinks himself into his study of the classics.

Alexander encourages Theodore’s interest, prompting Theodore to face desires he tried to put aside years before. As Theodore embraces the knowledge, he must also resist his attraction to Alexander—knowing his feelings are a serious crime in Victorian England.

But the secret Alexander keeps will change everything in a love story for the ages, steeped in taboo, temptation, history, and myth.

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Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

Some of the best stories are those that leave much to the reader’s imagination – at least to me they are. That’s exactly what Lewis has tapped into with Patron. As a teen, I was fascinated by mythology: Greek, Roman, and even some Norse for flavor – it’s not really surprising that Chris Hemsworth became one of my favorite actors simply because of his role as Thor. So upon reading the blurb for Patron, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on it. The mere suggestion that Theodore might find himself face-to-face with an ancient god, all in the search for a patron for his studies… well, there was no way I was passing that up, especially as this is a m/m historical romance. And Lewis did not disappoint.

For those readers looking for between-the-sheets action, this is not the book for you. Theodore is a student of Greek literature and is hoping that an invitation to read a passage from the Iliad, in its original Greek, will open up avenues of study and access to collections that his lower social class does not allow. It is in a moment of weakness… folly… desperation… or perhaps acknowledgement of the gods he actually believes in (rather than the god he is expected to believe in) that he makes an offering and a plea to Hermes, patron of oratory and good luck, for his reading to go well. It goes spectacularly and Theodore soon finds himself with more invitations than he ever dreamed of, but there is one invitation that was more than he hoped for but was exactly what he wanted, and it is in the course of utilizing that particular invite that Theodore learns just how lacking his education has been – but not because of his social class, rather because of the Church’s hand in teaching abridged copies of the classic Greek texts. The more he reads and translates from the complete texts, the more his past inclinations are revived and he finds it harder and harder to deny them in light of Alexander’s attention – especially when Alexander intimates that he is receptive to Theodore.

I found Patron to be a rather seductive read. Theodore’s passion for Greek literature and mythology is conveyed so well that I was easily caught up in his excitement, his anticipation, and his worry over the discoveries he made. That it went hand in hand with his growing attraction to Alexander and his internal struggle over whether or not he could accept what Alexander was offering made it impossible for me not to be swept along with him. I felt myself being seduced by Alexander’s illicit proposal and during the final scene in the book, I was probably panting just as hard as Theodore was as the lines between reality and mythology were blurred. And while my immediate reaction when I got to the end of the story was, “NOOOOOOOOOO!”, I cannot convey how much I appreciated that the author left it where she did, allowing me to use my imagination for what comes next, because quite honestly, the ending was perfect.

C.B. LEWIS is small and Scottish and can often be spotted perched around historical monuments with her notepad and pen. She has been writing and telling tales for almost as long as she can remember and has a brain that constantly fizzes with an abundance of ideas. If she’s not working on half a dozen things at once, it should be considered a slow day.

She loves to travel and just has one continent left to complete her travel bingo card. A lot of the travel has also been research-based, and if pointed at any historical event, she will research it vociferously, just because she can.

Normally she is based in Edinburgh, where she tends toward the hermit lifestyle, needing nothing but a kettle, a constant supply of tea, and—of course—the Internet. There are no cats, no puppies, no significant others, only a lot of ideas and an awful lot of typing. And occasionally, cake. Never forget the cake.

Connect with C.B.

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Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Patron by C.B. Lewis to read and review.

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