Friday, September 08, 2017

Book Brief: The Masterpiece by Bonnie Dee

the masterpieceTitle ~ The Masterpiece

Author ~ Bonnie Dee 

Published ~ 13th June 2017

Genre ~ Historical M/M Romance

Rating

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Synopsis

Built from the bottom up: one perfect gentleman.
Man about town Arthur Lawton spends his days pursuing entertainment while shoeshine Joe Sprat labors to better his family’s lives. When an argument about nature versus nurture sparks a wager, Arthur swears to a friend he can turn this working man into a gentleman who will pass at a society function.
Joe is happy to participate in the experiment for a fee but receives more than he bargained for after moving into Lawton’s house. Arthur is determined Joe won’t merely wear a veneer of sophistication but educates him in every way. As he creates his new and improved man, Arthur grows more deeply infatuated with him, while Joe falls equally hard for his charismatic mentor.
Underneath a growing friendship, desire simmers and one day explodes. After their relationship escalates, the pair exists in a dream bubble until the threat of exposure sharply reminds them they belong in different worlds. When the ball is over, each must resume his own life, changed by their encounter but destined for different courses.
Find out if love is strong enough to bridge the gap between peer and pauper in this twist on the tale of My Fair Lady.

 

Sally’s Book Brief

My Fair Lady is one of the iconic films of the sixties, exploring the assumptions and prejudices inherent in the class divide and what happens when rich people with too much time on their hands decide to amuse themselves at the poor's expense – plus singing, dancing and spectacular frocks. Add the tensions involved in embarking on a same sex relationship in an inimical world and there's the potential for plot dynamite.

Here we have Arthur Lawton making an idle and rather cruel bet with his bestest pal Freddie that they can pass off a boot black as a gentleman. The boot black, Joe Sprat, is rather atypical in that he is handsome, articulate and a true connoisseur of boots and shoes, with an ambition to open his own shoe shop. Given Joe's obvious intelligence and Arthur's abundance of funds to pay him, they enter into the arrangement that if Joe does his utmost to help Arthur win his bet, Arthur will give him both the veneer of gentility and the funds to be a successful shopkeeper.

There was a lot to enjoy in this book. The historical detail wasn't overdone, there were plenty of sly nods to My Fair Lady's dialogue and song book, and there was even a nod to GBS's Pygmalion in the contemplation of what happens to someone from a poor but comfortable working class  background suddenly exposed to utter luxury and ease then returned to the stews.

Arthur was a pleasant enough chap, though terribly aimless so my sympathies were very firmly with Joe and I spent quite a lot of the book very annoyed on his behalf as he fell further and further into Arthur's rather limp clutches. I could see how each would be dazzled by the other but can't help feeling that Arthur did rather better from the transaction, acquiring some much needed backbone.

This story is set in 1909 and so a hearts and flowers ending isn't really appropriate but I found the denouement very satisfying and plausible.  It was a fun read.

Purchase Links

AMAZON GLOBAL LINK

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Meet Bonnie Dee 

I began telling stories as a child. Whenever there was a sleepover, I was the designated ghost tale teller. I still have a story printed on yellow legal paper in second grade about a ghost, a witch and a talking cat.
I enjoy dabbling in many genres. Whether you're a fan of contemporary historical or fantasy romance, you'll find something to enjoy among my books. I'm interested in flawed, often damaged, people who find the fulfillment they seek in one another.

You can learn more about me, Bonnie Dee, and my back list of many romance books at http://bonniedee.com. Find me on FB at Bonnie Dee Author or Bonnie Dee. My Twitter handle is @Bonnie_Dee. I’m not the most active social media person but I turn up occasionally. Most importantly, please take a moment to sign up for my newsletter to learn of upcoming releases. Newsletter signup form

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