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Lessons in Love (Cambridge Fellows #1)

3.72  ·  Rating Details  ·  956 Ratings  ·  143 Reviews

He didn’t think he had a heart. Until he lost it.

Cambridge Fellows Mysteries, Book 1

St. Bride’s College, Cambridge, England, 1905.

Jonty Stewart is handsome and outgoing, with blood as blue as his eyes. When he takes up a teaching post at the college where he studied, his dynamic style acts as an agent for change within the archaic institution. He also has a catalytic

Kindle Edition, 200 pages
Published (first published November 1st 2008)
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(showing 1-30 of 1,975)
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Mar 15, 2015 Vivian rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Utterly charming pre-Great War romance set at Cambridge University. Not hard to believe in Orlando's innocence having grown up in a cloistered environment and Jonty's optimistic realism having experience the world radically different. They are sweet and what was once chaste grows into something more. The mystery is engaging and quite relevant to their burgeoning illicit romance. Gave me a craving for mugs of tea and Hot Cross buns, which I can't find anywhere--aargh!

Definitely continuing this se
Jun 29, 2015 Alissa rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: historical
*2.5* stars

It's difficult for me to write this review. Why? Because I so wanted to love this book. While I didn't hate it, I didn't love it either. My feelings are just meh.

For those of you who don't know, I'm a history teacher. So when I get my hands on a m/m historical, I'm positively giddy. Lessons in Love is set in the early 20th century England. The story follows two Cambridge professors, Jonty and Orlando, and their budding friendship. To me it sounded like the perfect set up ... a shy, c

I liked the characters, I adore the era as a backdrop, I like the college theme and the gentle mystery/murder plot. And yet this feels only like 3.5*. I will be able to compare, because I bought the first three books of the series.

So why not a wholehearted 5*? So many people absolutely loved this historical and I was prepared to do so as well.

Well, truth be told, I did not really believe in the sexual peculiarities of these characters. Be it that 14 is too old for a boy to not even have star
Emanuela ~plastic duck~
01/18/13: Revised rating after a couple of years of reading m/m: from 4 to 3.

This is a cute and sweet story of a seduction with a crime to solve.

Orlando lives in a world by himself, he's only concerned about his teaching and he knows almost nothing of the world, as he was brought up in a family where passion was repressed. Then he meets Jonty, who is his opposite, and they become friends. Jonty longs for Orlando and slowly he overcomes Orlando's defenses and awakens the same longing in Orlando.

Mark Probst
Mar 24, 2009 Mark Probst rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Charlie Cochrane’s Lessons in Love is a lovely Edwardian mixture of romance and murder mystery. Set in 1906 at Cambridge University, two fellows (a term we Americans are unfamiliar with, but refers to a former student of the University who is now on staff, generally in a teaching position) meet and slowly fall in love. Jonathan (Jonty) is a high-spirited, jocular English teacher who sets his sights on warming up the reticent, brooding mathematician, Orlando. No sooner does Jonty break the ice, t ...more
Julie Bozza
Dec 17, 2014 Julie Bozza rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, male-male
A really charming and well-told tale of murder and new love in a quintessentially English academic setting. A nice quiet read that had me turning the pages to not only find out 'who done it' but also whether Jonty and Orlando would find the right balance between them to make a romance work. Well done, Charlie!

3.5 stars

What struck me most in the story, besides the wonderful writing, is the exploration of the great divide between innocence and experience. I think this works so very well in a setting, too (end of Victorian era), where (though, hard for us to believe in this day and age) it might have been easy, for some, to live to almost the age of thirty without knowing (or missing) carnal pleasure. Especially if you'd lived a sheltered, rather repressed life. Add to that, an innocence about your sexu
Elisa Rolle
Jonathan Stewart, Jonty for the intimate friends, and Orlando Coppersmith are both young professors in one of the Cambridge's college at the beginning of the twenty century. They are at opposite in work and behavior, Stewart a literature professor and Coppersmith a mathematics, Stewart open and friendly, both with students than colleagues, Coppersmith aloof and always lost in his mind. They also had very different family, Coppersmith now orphan and with two very cold and distant parents, Stewart ...more
Jul 11, 2011 Nikki rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, crime, lgbt
Lessons in Love had very enthusiastic ratings from one or two of my friends, and then a rather ambivalent one from another. I decided to try it, anyway, and found myself decidedly toward the ambivalent end of the spectrum. Though other people say it's amazingly historically accurate and it conjures up a real sense of place and time, I wouldn't say it does. The characters didn't quite ring true, either: the first chapter races past their slow opening up to each other, and the part where Orlando r ...more
I've had this book on my to be read pile for so long because I don't like historicals so much but this is a beautiful little romance wrapped up in a murder mystery plot. It's set in the early 1900's in the fictional St Bride's College and features a couple of awkward yet endearing heroes, the dreamy Shakespearean professor Jonty and the repressed mathematician Orlando. The dialogue is deliciously old-fashioned, like watching a classic BBC production and Orlando's scandalised yet passionate react ...more
Mar 09, 2015 M rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I don't know why I read this book. Don't get me wrong, I quite enjoyed it. But I'm just wondering what possessed me to read a book called Lessons in Love, not to mention one with so ghastly a cover. Thankfully the rest of the series has better covers. Anyway, like I said, I did enjoy this book, though it got a bit sappy here and there. It took me a while to get into, but around 40% I just sort of got absorbed by it. It captures the Victorian-collegiate atmosphere fairly well and I got to like th ...more
Ije the Devourer of Books
I enjoyed this first book in what looks like will be a great series.

In this first story Jonty and Orlando both Fellows at Cambridge University, meet each other, find love and also find the person who is murdering students at St Bride's College.

This is a gentle mystery and romance story with great potential which I am looking forward to experiencing in the other books.

A lovely beginning.
Feb 12, 2011 Chris rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very good historical m/m romance and mystery set at a small Cambridge college in the early 20th century. The newest English fellow at the college starts to get under the skin of a repressed mathematics fellow... and then they find themselves working together to help the police try to figure out who is murdering students.
Feb 14, 2013 MLE rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mm
Sweet period story without being too sweet, or cloying. The mystery was well developed, and the chracters were relatable. I look forward to reading more of these.
This is a nicely written historical murder mystery, set at St. Bride’s College in England in 1905, so right smack dab in the Edwardian period. A lot of reviews refer to it as “gentle” and that is a good term, especially for the quiet romance which is between exuberant and experienced Jonty and innocent and closed-up Orlando, but I would more aptly use the term of “slow” and “leisurely”. It is a very slow, leisurely read, and one that is remarkably low on tension, even as more murders pop up.

I th
This novel is a sweet, gentle M/M Romance, set in Cambridge in the early years of the 20th century, amidst a murder-mystery that brings to mind both Sherlock Holmes and Miss Marple.

When Jonty Stewart explodes into fellow lecturer Orlando Coppersmith's life, little did Orlando know that his life was about to drastically change. Orlando is a brilliant mathematics lecture who remains aloof from all those around him. Yet from the first moment of meeting Jonty, something began to change inside him,
Mar 01, 2013 Holly rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: m-m, mystery, historical

This is my kind of book. Historical, mystery and . . . well I have to admit it. I tend to LOVE the kind of books that are on the non-explicit list. I am a Total. Plot. Whore. LOVE long, plotty books. And when there's little to no sex in the book, then there there is really a need to focus on plot (or character development, which is a plot on its own).

Jonty and Orlando are two professors at a college in Edwardian England. Jonty is young, brash and more experienced. Orlando is more serious and ver
Jul 30, 2015 K rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Historical British Mystery
Cambridge Fellows, Jonty and Orlando, come together as tentative partners and lovers to investigate the murder of a student whose killer has left a note indicating that his death is due to his sexual preferences. Both MC's have troubled backgrounds which they tentatively share with each other as the investigation continues and the body count stacks up. Their relationship is necessary chaste and of the time, but the love between the pair is obviously growing as they lear
I was smitten with the language. The book is set in the early 1900s and it really felt like reading a book from that time. Sure, I'm no linguist so I can't tell if what the author used was even remotely accurate, but it really felt that way. And not just the language but the characters' behavior, their attitude towards sex, it didn't feel like a modern romance force-planted in a historical setting like most historical romances do. This felt... genuine. Like reading a romance written by an author ...more
Andreea Daia
Mar 28, 2015 Andreea Daia rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2011, lgbt
A very pleasant surprise - well developed plot (even if at times a bit predictable), and strong characters. I was expecting the "mystery" to be in the background, but it is an important part of this short novel. My only complaint was that at times it felt a bit slow.

What impressed me most was the flawless execution - Charlie Cochrane shows much attention to style.
Lee Rowan
May 18, 2010 Lee Rowan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: mystery lovers and good-hearted peeps in general
This is the book I would get for someone who was either a mystery fan or gay-friendly but nervous about explicit gay sex. Charlie's two protagonists are wonderful young men who hit the ground running in this book and develop beautifully throughout the series. And I could not guess whodunnit, which is always a plus!
Feb 22, 2014 Kat rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: historical, bingo
3.5 stars

Very well done romance/murder mystery set at a college in Cambridge, England in 1906. I liked both MCs, Orlando and Jonty, they were well rounded and fleshed out characters, with interesting hints at their past, I hope we'll learn more about in the other books of the series. The story focuses more on the development of the relationship between Jonty and Orlando, but the mystery solving is still front and center in the minds of the MCs, so it's kept nicely within the story. I had my susp
Feb 09, 2014 Xanti rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Fantastic! I love this series. After reading this first novel I have now blown through the next four; I'm only slowing down because I don't want to come to the latest book and have to wait for the next one. I'm savoring the thought of at least three more extant books to come that I can parcel out to myself. But it's rough making myself wait. Jonty and Orlando are so adorable and human as soulmates, each with his darker backstory, which brings depth to the stories. This is M/M, but the love scene ...more
Chris, the Dalek King
The Cambridge Fellows series is one that I’ve enjoyed for quite some time. Though I must admit that the series got away from me a good five or so books ago, and I am dreadfully behind. That is mainly why I decided to use this book for our Teachers theme week. I’d love to finally catch up on all that has been happening with Jonty and Orlando. This reread will give me a perfect chance to start in on that.

Luckily for me, it has been long enough that my brain seems to have misplaced a lot of my memo
I want to start by saying that I read this book for a challenge, and that's the only reason why I read - and actually finished - it. This was not my kind of book! Not just for the slow burning romance, but also for the setting, the mystery-part and – most of all – the language.

This book thakes place in Cambridge in the Edwardian era and it's about two teachers at a college, Orlando and Jonty.

I wanted to like this book, it has many things that I like:

- Real, true feelings between the MCs that wer
Aug 18, 2009 Kassa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It’s a rare delight to have a fully developed mystery blend with a mostly satisfying romantic entanglement within a historical setting – and all accomplished within a short 160 pages. The mystery of the murdered students was well done with just enough hints to keep the final resolution from being either overly simplistic or too clever. The book’s progression depended equally upon the characters and their slow growing romance as with the resolution to the ongoing murders. The cast were all well w ...more
Tami (synchro from BL)
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Josephine Myles
There’s so much to love about the pairing of Jonty Stewart and Orlando Coppersmith – where to begin? Charlie has succeeded in creating two utterly lovable and compatible heroes, but who nevertheless have plenty of opportunity to rub each other up the wrong way as their personalities are so very different. It’s delightful to watch the sheltered, studious Orlando being prised from his protective shell by the outgoing, cheery Jonty.

In this first book a series of homophobic murders cast a real shado
Elizabeth H.
I think the author left a few opportunities on the floor, elements of the story that could have been enhanced to make it even better. For instance, I was really looking forward to seeing how Orlando and Jonty become friends, the true basis of their relationship, but this section of the novel was rushed, and much of it was even "told" instead of "shown." Despite this type of problem, the main characters are so entrancing, and their environment is so interesting, that I found the entire story fasc ...more
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As Charlie Cochrane couldn't be trusted to do any of her jobs of choice - like managing a rugby team - she writes. Her favourite genre is gay fiction, predominantly historical romances/mysteries, but she's making an increasing number of forays into the modern day. She's even been known to write about gay werewolves - albeit highly respectable ones.

Her Cambridge Fellows series of Edwardian romantic
More about Charlie Cochrane...

Other Books in the Series

Cambridge Fellows (1 - 10 of 12 books)
  • Lessons in Desire (Cambridge Fellows, #2)
  • Lessons in Discovery (Cambridge Fellows, #3)
  • Lessons in Power (Cambridge Fellows, #4)
  • Lessons in Temptation (Cambridge Fellows, #5)
  • Lessons in Seduction (Cambridge Fellows, #6)
  • Lessons in Trust (Cambridge Fellows, #7)
  • All Lessons Learned (Cambridge Fellows, #8)
  • Lessons for Survivors (Cambridge Fellows, #9)
  • Lessons for Suspicious Minds (Cambridge Fellows, #10)
  • Lessons for Idle Tongues (Cambridge Fellows, #11)

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