Elisabeth Lane's Reviews > A Gentleman's Position

A Gentleman's Position by K.J. Charles
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Mar 28, 2016

it was amazing
bookshelves: celibate-hero, own, favorites
Read from March 28 to 29, 2016

A Gentleman's Position was a highly anticipated read for me. The Society of Gentlemen series has been building toward this book from the beginning so it's not a great place for new readers to start. It features Lord Richard Vane and his sly, tricky, dependable valet David Cyprian.

When their long-time attraction tips from unspoken to barely acknowledged, Richard can't deal with it. He's a fine, upstanding, moral man who doesn't trifle with servants. He's above them so it's unethical and they're below him so it's repulsive. David has a more pragmatic view, but it doesn't matter because Richard is in charge. He employs him. And there's nothing he can do about it.

The start of this book is all about the pining and unresolved sexual tension, which is absolutely glorious. The lingering looks! The glancing touches! I was on the edge of my seat waiting for these two to acknowledge their attraction. And then something finally happens...and goes terribly, terribly wrong. Great job, Richard.

But when circumstances put Richard in need of his valet's more creative talents (basically the fixer for the group of friends the series has been about), it evens the score a bit. I absolutely loved this about this book. See, in PENULTIMATE HERO books in the romance genre, the eldest brother/Duke/gang leader/captain is generally the most alpha of all the alphas who fixes all the problems and solves all the things. If you've read Slightly Dangerous by Mary Balogh, it's an excellent example of what I'm talking about. And on the face of it, Richard is that hero here. Except that he is forced not only to rely upon David, but his friends, his family and even his ex-lover's radical boyfriend who he doesn't like very much at every turn in this book. The penultimate hero is a trope I enjoy in romance, but the twist here was delightfully clever without being snide or critical. It's just what I have come to expect from Charles.

And then of course there's David. While Richard is the big, strong man with all the wealth and power, David is the competent one. I love competent ones. I love how he solves every problem and rights every wrong. I still think he's ever-so-slightly scary, but this book made him a hero in all the best ways.

I'm sure for a lot of people A Seditious Affair will be their favorite of the series with its burly dominant hero, utterly fraught pairing and action-packed political thrillingness. Both Silas and Dominic are easy to like and Richard doesn't come off well in that book at all. But for me, A Gentleman's Position is a small miracle. It takes characters who are on practically the most unequal footing possible, in an absolutely untenable situation, and makes it all work beautifully and plausibly, leaving everyone right where they should be.

A Gentleman's Position has earned its place in my top 5 favorite reads ever. I can't wait to reread it. I might just go do it now.
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Quotes Elisabeth Liked

K.J. Charles
“I want you back. I want you as my lover, my right hand, my devious, lying, counterfeiting, entirely unprincipled fox. My valet. I want you blacking my boots, solving my problems, and sharing my bed. I want you to accept a situation of gross injustice with no safeguard except your trust in me. I want you to be that foolish, vulnerable creature, a servant who warms his master's sheets, and only the two of us will know that I am not the master here. And I swear to you, if you will give me that trust, I will be worthy of it. Whatever may befall between us, no matter whether you change your mind, I will always behave as the man I ought to be. The man you need me to be. I love you, David, Will you be with me?”
K.J. Charles, A Gentleman's Position
tags: love


Reading Progress

03/28/2016 marked as: currently-reading
03/29/2016 marked as: read

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