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The Craft of Love

4.11  ·  Rating details ·  177 ratings  ·  62 reviews
When professional respect leads to something more ...

Benjamin Lewis has created a life for himself as one of the most respected silversmiths and engravers in New York City. For Benjamin, his work is his passion and he has never sought out companionship beyond the close ties of family. Stumbling across dresses sew by his late mother, however, reawakens painful memories fr
Kindle Edition, 107 pages
Published October 19th 2018
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Average rating 4.11  · 
Rating details
 ·  177 ratings  ·  62 reviews

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K.J. Charles
A very sweet novella about a trans man working as a silversmith in 19th century New York, and his gentle courtship of an independent and determined quilt maker. It's got a lot to say in its few pages about the struggles of women in work, the lack of recognition, the complexity of a trans child growing up with a parent whose love doesn't stretch to understanding. Great historical detail, too, and the crafts have some serious metaphorical resonance for the story. And it's hopeful, too, about peopl ...more
Skye Kilaen
Mini review: Gorgeous, kind, low-angst historical romance novella that pairs a cis bi woman who's a quilter and embroiderer, and a trans man who's a silversmith. Really loved this! Especially because I'm a quilter myself. :) If it's on your TBR, move it up, a perfect comfort read.
Claudie Arseneault
Aug 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I loved this story to pieces. The entire relationship is based on mutual professional respect, and there's something incredibly refreshing in the depiction of their growing feelings. Benjamin absolutely reads like an aromantic spectrum character to me, and both of them have general aspec vibes that made this story feel safe and super enjoyable to me. Highly recommended.
4.5 stars

Queer and trans people thriving in historical settings!!!! I love that shit!!!!! Lowkey wish it had been longer and shown more of their relationship after getting together but it was still lovely 💕
Mar 07, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: romance, lgbt
I read a recommendation for this quiet queer romance novella somewhere, so I gave it a try.

Benjamin is a transgender man who works as a silversmith 19th century New York. When he approaches a quilt-maker with an important piece of work, the two hit it off and embark on a sweet courtship, which is the main body of this book.

The novella covers their deepening relationship, the fears each of them have about it, and their lives as professional craftspeople in 19th century New York. It's lovely. And
Oct 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018-releases
If you like historical romances - The Craft of Love is excellent novella and I highly recommend to read it.
If you don’t usually read/like historical romances, may I recommend you this short novella as a starting point. It’s a good introduction to what the best of this genre has to offer. It’s sweet, atmospheric, feminist, inclusive and beautifully written.

The Craft of Love is about silversmith Benjamin and quiltmaker Remembrance meeting and falling in love in New York, 19th century. Benjamin is
E.E. Ottoman writes such lovely stories! Just as is done with the fantasy series “Mechanical Universe,” Ottoman features MCs who are artistic, creative, and passionate about their craft.

"The Craft of Love" takes place in 19th century New York City and features two talented artisans: Benjamin Lewis is a gentle, soft, tender transman silversmith and Remembrance Quincy is an indomitable, determined, stalwart, and strong-minded bisexual female quiltmaker. The two bond over their mutual admiration fo
Pam Faste aka Peejakers
Oh, this was really lovely! ❤  Something about it just felt so warm and comforting to me.  I think it was both the characters and their occupations, two quiet, gentle people, the making of a quilt and a silver teapot.

I had a thought that reading this felt a bit like being wrapped up in that quilt, drinking tea served from that pot.

The slow-blooming friendship and romance between Benjamin and Remembrance was deeply touching and full of sweetness.  This story has the same beautiful simplicity as
Oct 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
Quiet and gentle low-heat romance! I wanted a bit more of the ending but overall it was a lovely, heart-warming read.

Full(er) review:

This is a sweet m/f historical romance with a trans MC. It's quiet, low on heat and angst, high on kindness and happy-making. I loved the mutual respect the MCs had for each other as professionals. The story is rich on historical details on blacksmithing and embroidering. We get a strong feminist heroine who genuinely cares about other people and their well being.
Nov 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is a really lovely novella. It's a quiet, gentle queer historical romance that takes place in 19th century New York City. The main characters are two intelligent and skilled craftspeople--a quiet transman silversmith and a determined bi lady quiltmaker--who connect as artisans and then become friends and more. I love the gentleness and simplicity of this story. It's uplifting and nice and warm and easy. The historical and sociopolitical details concerning women's work and gender identity ar ...more
Xan West
Content Warnings (view spoiler)

I loved this, so much. I will try to be more coherent about why soon.
Jan 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
Lovely and incredibly gentle novella about trans silversmith Benjamin who begings to very sweetly court bi quiltmaker Remembrance.
Could have been 5 stars if not for the abrupt ending that left me feeling rather dissatisfied.
I loved how politically active Remembrance was and that she fights for women's rights and to abolish slavery, among other things.
Oct 19, 2018 added it
I received this in advance review copy so wanted to say a few words about it here. This is a sweet novella set in antebellum New York City featuring a romance between a skilled quiltmaker and silversmith who fall in love when the silversmith commissions a quilt from some dresses once sewn by his mother. Being a novella, the love story moves briskly and my reader's heart wanted MORE by way of the characters getting to know one another and their respective families, friends, and colleagues/employe ...more
Apr 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
A very sweet historical romance between a seamstress and a silversmith. I loved how Remembrance intuited Benjamin’s identity as a trans man. There didn’t have to be a big gasp-y coming out scene, she just sees him as he is. I also loved Remembrance’s political activism—the book is as much about her efforts to make working conditions better for herself and other women as it is about their relationship. And it’s always nice to find a histrom about the working class—nothing against dukes, but it’s ...more
This was sweet and lovely and something I really needed to read. If you are looking for a short, adorable love story then this will absolutely do the trick.
I read this in one sitting and it was such a gentle romance between a trans silversmith and a bi quiltmaker. I haven't read a lot of historical books that focus a lot on craftsmanship but I loved that this one did, and that their relationship started through mutual professional respect and admiration.

I appreciated that it addressed political subjects like cotton produced by slavery, abolition and working women's rights. It was also incredibly gentle on queer issues, though there was mentions of
For the majority of this book, I was really enjoying it -- the writing is lovely, the romance was sweet, and I thought I'd end up giving this one 4 stars.

Until I reached the end, which was so abrupt I had to keep checking to make sure my Kindle wasn't messing up or something. It's not that I was expecting sex or some elaborate declaration of love and marriage to wrap this book up. But the pacing to end this was so ridiculously off that it brought down my previous enjoyment of the story.

Will I tr
May 24, 2019 rated it liked it
I think it's a sweet story, but it didn't hold my attention. It took me months to read and I usually read longer books in a day or two.
I want to see more characters like these and I do enjoy slower pace, gentler stories, but I wanted a bit more action from this one.
Jun 21, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Soft, sweet romance between a trans man silversmith and a cis woman quilter. Historical romance with no dukes! Amazing! Short, but fits in about 50 scenes with tea, cider, and coffee which just goes to show how comfy it is. Low heat, but the cider is hot.
Dec 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: historical, romance
What a lovely, peaceful, sweet romance! Like a balm for the soul. 😊
Kristīne Vītola
Very aro-friendly (also ace-friendly) romance, both MCs read as being aspec themselves.
Really lovely, smartly developed historical romance. I'd absolutely classify the heat level as "sweet," though I'd also want to highlight this as a masterclass in emotional and physical romantic tension.

ARC supplied by publisher in exchange for an honest review

When I requested an ARC for this book many moons ago (life happens sometimes) I stated as my reason that we needed more books with soft heroes and strong heroines, especially with the world being the way that it is. The Craft of Love definitely delivers on both counts. Benjamin and Remembrance are characters that are easy to adore. The novella itself manages to convey a sweet historical romance that features well developed character

Felix Moore
Dec 15, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is a lovely, very sweet, very fluffy historical romance. It's particularly refreshing to see a historical romance with a trans MC that isn't at all angsty about it. Benjamin being trans isn't a source of conflict in the relationship, and yet nothing feels at all implausible or ahistorical, something I'm usually very sensitive to.

My only slight criticisms are:

a) It took me quite a long time to work out when it was set. I resorted to Googling people that were mentioned which gave me some id
Katherine Long
Jun 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ebook, lgbtq
Stars: 3.5 Stars
Format: Digital

This was so adorable! I don’t normally read much on my phone (so many distractions, hence my ereader) but I wasn’t distracted (much) from this book.

Quick Thoughts:
- Loved that the heroine has strong opinions and convictions but isn’t written with blinders to everything but what she believes in
- The hero is a trans man and there SERIOUSLY needs to be more romances starring trans people
- Their loved ones are supportive and wonderful
- Yay minimal angst! (Though I
Nov 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Beautifully gentle queer historical

EE Ottoman writes with such lovely tenderness. Their characters are always good, nice people making their way quietly in the world striving toward beauty and love. I loved this romance even if I wish there were more. I particularly enjoyed the loving details of their crafts of quilt making and silver smithing. And I loved that their secrets (the hero is trans, the heroine was in love with a woman) helped them see and know each other, making their own happiness
K.B. Rainwater
Nov 19, 2018 rated it really liked it
A nice comfortable read

This book is sweet from beginning to ending. It doesn't wrench at emotions, it doesn't have a lot of excitement. It's just a nice quiet story about two people falling in love.
I really like the way it deals with Benjamin's gender identity. For the most part he just is. We find out about his past through his memories of his mother.
I really liked the two characters, and liked the development of their relationship.
If you're looking for a sweet story before going to bed, this i
Miss Susan
Oct 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: lgbtqia
ahhh, so pleased to be running across so many great historical romance novellas these days

lately novels and i haven't been getting on, anything i can't get read in a day just doesn't seem to get finished

anyways this is a very sweet romance set in antebellum new york between a silversmith and a quiltmaker. i might recommend it to my cross-stitching group, i feel like they'd enjoy the craft feels alongside the romance

4 stars
This was a lovely, quiet romance about a trans silversmith and an independent and politically active quilt maker. I loved all the details about their respective crafts, and also the gentle, thoughtful way the romance unfolds. Both of these characters are so thoughtful and gentle with each other, but also both struggle with what they each want and whether or not they can fit their lives together. Really lovely secondary characters, and overall just perfect, feel-good historical loveliness.
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writes romance novels, wears pretty clothes, does history stuff.


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