Saturday, October 14, 2017

A Gentleman's Position (Society of Gentlemen #3) [Richard & David] by K.J. Charles

OUTSTANDING. One of the best books I've read hands down. This book held me at the edge of my seat from the moment I opened my kindle until I closed it a few hours later realizing I'm HUNGRY! I've sat for about 6 hours almost without moving devouring this book unable to stop. I"ve waited for Lord Richard Vane's and David Cyprian story from the start. I KNEW it's going to be special but I didn't predict just HOW amazing it's going to be. This wasn't just about Richard and David realizing they are both in love with one another, it was mainly about what are the changes their relationship will have to undergo. It's what Richard has feared all along but for the entirely the wrong reasons. 

Before I start my review - a "warning". This book shouldn't be read as a standalone because it isn't. The first and second book share mostly the same timeline with this book starting at the very conclusion of the second book. The characters and the interaction between them should NOT be left to this book. It would be a total shame to miss any of these details because some are explained, I would think it wouldn't be enough to get to the depth of them. Dominic Frey (the MC in the 2nd installment) have been Richard's best friend and long time lover and everything that happened between them is discussed not only in this one but also in the previous one in which Richard has to put his past beliefs aside to be there for his friend, but it also a sort of "warning" for him for everything that he has been feeling for his valet - inappropriate on so many levels and practically impossible. Yet when Dom and Richard talk throughout this book everything that happened between them since they were boys make the difference in Richard making the change he should have made a long time ago. For his sake, for Dom's and finally for him to be able to have David not only by his side, but also in his bed as an equal lover. 


Lord Richard Vane have been in love with his personal valet David Cyprian for the whole 4 and a half years he has worked for him. Asking him to powder his red hair he finds so appealing and wearing the servants' uniforms and not the usual black most valets wear - he NEEDED to remember at all times that David is out of limits no matter what. David is invaluable to him on so many levels. The known sentence "Cyprian, deal with this for me" shows not only the trust but the also vulnerability from a man with such a high rank and power who leans on one man alone - his Cyprian. Richard is known to his friends as the "fixer" the one they all go to with his exceptional ability for being by their side no matter what but also for his strict values he applies not only to himself but to everyone around him. It's difficult to please Richard, it's not that easy for Richard himself to live with those standards but at 37 almost 38 he isn't willing to change, though change is already knocking on his door..

David Cyprian has also loved Lord Richard Vane right from the start. Lowly born to say the least, he has made his post as Richard's valet not exactly with dignity, but he has worked hard to make sure Richard's affairs, ALL of them, are taken care of. There is no man like Richard, and though it's a sort of a hell to work with a man he loves yet needs to dress and undress and be in his bedroom so much time he simply can't work for anyone else. From the previous books we already know "Foxy David" as he is called on the street is a man to be feared, together with Richard's immense power at his disposal David runs the city under Richards' command, with his explicit orders but also with the ones he expect him to make. No one knows Richard as David does, yet there are times it's almost a burden when he can't have what he truly wants.


When Richard receives a letter from his mother to come to her dying bed, this powerful man returns to being 10 years old or even younger, remembering a cold and heartless mother whom he was never allowed to love. David heart crumbles to pieces seeing the effect the whole situation has on Richard and for a moment they even share a stolen kiss. This is the beginning of the end for Richard and David because while they have known deep inside they want each other for a few weeks now, THIS moment changes everything. While Richard wants what they shared back the way it used to be, David is unable to put his feelings aside. After a horrible fight he leaves Richards' side as his valet and returns home to his mother leaving a broken hearted Richard to try and pick the pieces of his heart when the man he has loved for so long is no longer at his side. This is the exact time for him to ask from his David to fix this for him, but how can he ask that when THEY or rather HE is the problem. 


Richard's strict laws doesn't allow him to bed his valet. He won't have a man in his bed when he is unable to truly say "no" to him, when his livelihood and future lays in his hand. He WON'T abuse his power over his servants. He WON'T make his valet the cause for rumor and abuse outside of his chambers. He loves David so much, yet he feels he can't offer him anything of equality and it's something he truly wants. Though he can't make a wife out of David in his mind he wishes he could make the best he can so his lover feel he is not obliged to him as an employer to his master. He doesn't know what he can say or do, what he can change to make it work and when he finally comes with an offer he feels will do for his precious David - David is offended beyond words and Richard finds himself again alone, without his David and mostly at a loss at what he CAN do to change things for the better. 


David truly doesn't CARE that he is "just a valet" and Richard is, well, Lord Richard Vane.. He wants to be in his bed, he wants to still be the man by his side who fixes everything and makes Richards' troubles disappear sometimes before it even comes to his attention. He is a mastermind of decipet and manipulation even if his master couldn't be far away from these things. Richard might know that some of the things David does for him aren't exactly lawful, but he doesn't know the extent and it works for him. David wants Richard to have him AS HE IS. His foxy valet. Not anything else. This is WHO he is, this is who he worked hard to become and what Richard is offering would make sense to a Lord like Richard but it's NOT what David wants and there are things he can't compromise on.


When the Richardians' world comes crashing down with accusations and even blackmail Richard doesn't know how to deal with any of it (especially not with his broken heart) and since he can't do it, his friends go and ask for David's help. This time it's not just Harry or Silas' head on the line it's ALL of them and no matter what and how they consider they can't find a real solution. This is what David DOES, this is what he is best known for, these exact manipulations are his home ground so when Richard asks for him he doesn't hesitate to come and help yet he IS reluctant to come back to Richard's side when they still haven't worked through their differences. While NOT working for Richard he untangles the horrible situation they were thrown into. It takes some effort from everyone yet in the end Richard and David also find a way to be together that makes them as equal as they could ever be. 


I LOVED seeing Richard and David together, there is nothing Richard wouldn't do for David even if no one would ever guess how much power David has over him. Richard NEEDED to NOT have David by his side to not only appreciate what he lost but to also bring someone else back, a different David (yet the same), one who is not JUST a valet who is also his lover and equal. He needed to learn who David is, what he wants and needs, and accept enough "nos" to realize David CAN stay at his side and not be just his subordinate. David opened Richard's eyes, he made him look and see everything around him differently. In his way he also made it possible for him and Dominic to save their friendship. He had a lot to do with Dom finding Silas and he worked hard to keep Silas alive. When Richard was lost the only man he could talk to was Dom and he has some beautiful insights that made all the difference. 


I could write so much about this book, yet I don't want to spoiler and I feel as I've said enough. This book is PERFECTION. I could have NEVER asked for more than it was. Everything about this book was a JOY to read, though I was nearly in tears so many times. I WANTED David and Richard to be together but I realized that they were both right. They couldn't just "start sleeping together" and be done with it, something major needed to happen between them to change their dynamics and it did and it was EVERYTHING. 


HIGHLY HIGHLY HIGHLY RECOMMEND you grab the first book and start reading. The sooner the better!


A Private Miscellany: This is a free read offered by KJ of our favorite couples (download through her website), a year and a half after the series has finished. I have no idea how I have missed it when I finished this book, so now, more than 2 years later it was a bit strange trying to remember some of the details and preferences of our couples. This contains mostly letters exchanged between the guys but it also contains one BDSM sex scene of Silas and Dom. By the way, LOVED Richard's portrait. 
Though it's been this long for me, I think it would be a wonderful gift if you've just finished and you already miss our dear friend. I for sure do!

Rating:
E-Book
Edition
240
pages
Read on:
13 October 2017
     

ABOUT THIS SERIES
 
Society of Gentlemen is a HIGHLY recommended Historical MM Romance series by K.J. Charles. It follows the Richardians' a group of high born (or rich) gay man in London of the early 1800s. Lord Richard Vane is their leader, he and his valet David Cyprian allows them to live their lives in relative ease but politics and scandals are never far away. There's a bit of politics (more in the first two novels) but mostly there are love stories that are the best match even if at first glance seem unlikely.

The first novella was published in an Anthology, it was a sexy read mostly and a nice add to the series. These ones MUST be read in order, the 1st and 2nd ones sharing most of the timeline and the third concluded the series perfectly - I keep close to my heart as one of the best books I've ever read. Richard and David are RIGHT THERE from the start, making everything possible but for them to be a couple on their own.. well.. I won't say more..

KJ gifted us with two free reads (both can be downloaded through her website). First is a deleted scene from the 2nd installment of a conversation between Slias and David. In the second we get to meet the guys again a year and a half after the end of the 3rd novel.  

A MUST READ SERIES.  

Books:
0.5. The Ruin of Gabriel Ashleigh [& Francis Webster] (Published 27 October 2015*) ★
1. A Fashionable Indulgence [Harry Vane & Julius Norreys] (Published 11 August 2015) 
2. A Seditious Affair [Silas Mason & Dominic Frey] (Published 15 December 2015) ★½
[ 2.5 A Confidential Problem [Silas Mason & Dominic Frey] (Published 1 April 2016) ]
3. A Gentleman's Position [Lord Richard Vane & David Cyprian] (Published 5 April 2016) ★
[ 3.5 A Private Miscellany (Published 20 December 2016) ] 

* Originally published in the "Another Place in Time" Anthology (1 October 2014)
 
     

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