♣ Irish Smurfétté ♣'s Reviews > Provoked

Provoked by Joanna Chambers
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19 Aug 2017 Addition: sooooo, in the last week or so, I've received my order of the paperback copies of this series - with the new covers - and I've purchased the audio book for this, the first in the series - just this morning.

*contented sigh* David and Murdo...

Take the plunge. Oh! And the narrator is a Scot. :D

PS: how the HAYULL has it been almost 4 years since I first read this?? 😱 😁 💗

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From the opening pages, the setting for this story makes sense when paired with the characters, the politics and society as a whole: 1820 Scotland, Edinburgh to be precise, strongly under British rule, rebellion against taxes and many other things bringing conflict that needles itself into everything.

This ‘everything’ includes our two main men, David Lauriston and Murdo Balfour. David is an advocate – a lawyer – and is a sympathetic one, at that. He’s a caring man unable to keep from wanting to help another man when he’s been wrong persecuted and prosecuted. He’s a bit of an idealist (at least according to Balfour, and we’ll get to him, I promise), a bit unfair to himself and definitely a determined fellow, at least professionally speaking. This story is told from his point of view and it’s an excellent choice. His voice is strong.

Now, Balfour… Murdo Balfour. Yep, I like him. Most of all because he likes David so much, and so easily. Murdo is intelligent and he’s quiet unapologetic and unafraid to say what he wants, which is namely David. I hesitate to say more because David (well, Ms Chambers) does such a wonderful job in giving us insight, a taste, a full meal of a description of Murdo whenever they encounter each other.

Both of these men are confident in their own ways. This is a simple and yet delicious equation: differences + contradictions X confidence = a simmering pot of hotness heading for an unavoidable explosion. Yeah, yeah, so many ways to take that and you can enjoy them all.

Despite the times and the illegality of being gay, David doesn’t torment himself over the fact that he is or that he even has his desires. He doesn’t deny it or try to fool himself into thinking he can fight who he is. What he struggles with is how to allow it to be a part of his life. His strength of character is a constant companion to his decision-making. Balfour has the type of personality that can, not necessarily open the door for David as he can do that for himself, show David that this is a life that can be achieved. I don’t know if anyone like Balfour existed in 1820’s Edinburgh, but given the diversity of this loony human race, maybe he did. He would have been a challenging, safe and strong place to be for a man like David to be, and vice versa.

Ms Chambers’ writing allows the creation of this world and these characters to easily find a place inside my mind. I can see the wardrobes and the puffs of cold breath. I can hear the exhaustion of one and the smirking lips of another. The style strides comfortably, no matter the action or emotion. Not all writers can do both equally well but she can and does.

There is a turning point for David and Balfour. It’s an event in which they both feel compelled to participate lest someone, more than one someone, comes to harm. Neither of them directly addresses this but I felt it, that slight change, a shift in their attitudes towards each other through the dialogue and reactions. Couple this with a very intense situation, in which I had no idea which way things were going to go, and you’ve got me as a reader. The connection is made.

Things aren’t easy between David and Balfour, not in the beginning and definitely not now. They both feel something, strongly, and act upon it, but it always seems to complicate things. They’re complicated. That’s David and Balfour in a nutshell if I had to choose one. Whether they’re together or apart, all throughout the story, I can feel that undercurrent of complexity and tension. I will tell you that there is sex in this book but not a lot, which may frustrate some readers. Believe me when I tell you that when it does happen, it's incredibly hot. And just as importantly, when it's not happening, that tension is just as palpable and I loved it.

Exciting.
Sexy.
Gut-wrenching.
Sad.
Quiet.
Shameful.
Heartfelt.
Honest.
Hopeful? A question that remains unanswered at the end of this story.

Be ready to begin reading the next installment of this series, Beguiled, once you have breathed the last word of this one. Don’t say you weren’t given fair warning. ;)

This one is 4.5 stars for me.

Check out the review at Prism Book Alliance
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Reading Progress

December 6, 2013 – Shelved
December 6, 2013 – Shelved as: to-read
December 6, 2013 – Shelved as: historical
December 27, 2013 – Started Reading
December 27, 2013 –
3.0% "Already the title makes sense. Not smart to try and tell a Scotsman what he can and cannot do, especially if you're a Brit in 1820 Stirling."
December 27, 2013 –
12.0% "I hope this continues, because it's working for me."
December 28, 2013 –
39.0% "There is definitely something crackling between David and Balfour, mostly because they are rather different in some ways. Crackling. And I'm enjoying the detail overall."
December 28, 2013 –
57.0% "Let me tell you, this is some good shit. Loving the detail, the surrounding story and even though David and Balfour have spent more time apart than together until now, I'm still feeling 'it' between them as a constant undercurrent."
December 28, 2013 –
65.0% "This is not going to be easy. So many things in David's way, mostly society and what all it's told him is right and wrong. He's not denying his own desires but he's struggling with how to handle them... sort of."
December 28, 2013 –
75.0% "Yeah, y'all, this is a good'n. Gona be goin' right to the second, Beguiled, right after this."
December 28, 2013 –
82.0% "Intense, honestly wasn't sure where that was going. Very, very well done."
December 28, 2013 –
100.0% "I have lots of words, they will become a review once I get home in a few days. Just know I loved every single one of Joanna Chambers' and I'm moving onto Beguiled right now."
January 2, 2014 – Shelved as: first-in-series
January 2, 2014 – Shelved as: part-of-series
January 2, 2014 – Shelved as: reviewed
January 2, 2014 – Shelved as: pba
January 2, 2014 – Shelved as: amazon-review
January 2, 2014 – Finished Reading
September 4, 2014 – Shelved as: j-chambers
October 25, 2015 – Shelved as: fave-couples
August 19, 2017 – Shelved as: audio-books
August 19, 2017 – Shelved as: own
August 19, 2017 – Shelved as: real-live-tree-books

Comments Showing 1-13 of 13 (13 new)

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message 1: by Bev (new) - rated it 5 stars

Bev You're into these historical ones aren't you Mrs PBA??


♣ Irish Smurfétté ♣ I do lerve me some historicals, I canna hep it LOL.

The next one in this series, Beguiled, is even bettah!


Ingie Beautiful review, Andrea! You know I loved this great story too. :)


♣ Irish Smurfétté ♣ Thank you, Ing! I'm so glad you did and that it was the right story for you right now. ;) :D


Ingie Andrea wrote: "Thank you, Ing! I'm so glad you did and that it was the right story for you right now. ;) :D"

Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos


♣ Irish Smurfétté ♣ Omg that one is awesome! Toss that one into one of our threads in the group, Bev will love it lol


message 7: by Sunny (last edited Apr 01, 2014 08:22AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Sunny Awesome review! It's very much how I felt about the story.

...will you write my reviews from now on?


message 8: by Bev (new) - rated it 5 stars

Bev Andrea wrote: "Omg that one is awesome! Toss that one into one of our threads in the group, Bev will love it lol"

I did love it...so much so that I've pinched it and put it in my Photobucket!! BWAHAHA!!


♣ Irish Smurfétté ♣ Sunny wrote: "Awesome review! It's very much how I felt about the story.

...will you write my reviews from now on?"


Thank you! and I'm lucky I get my own written. :X
Also: I was still calling him "Balfour" here, but he's def Murdo now... as in David 'n Murdo... awwwwww lol

lol @ Bev, nick it all you want. :p


Minya What a great review. I´m beginning to read the story in the morning and now I am in chapter 4.
Thanks to your wonderful review I can´t wait to read more .. and more ... ;-)


♣ Irish Smurfétté ♣ Oh Minya, just you wait! David and Murdo... prepare yourself. ;)

And thank you. :D


Minya I´ve read the book over the weekend and I´m looking forward to read more of Murdo and David.
It´s really interesting to read abouth the two men in this decade as gay.
It must be much more difficult when everyone around you waited for the proposal to a woman.
But before I could start reading the next book I have a lot of other books on my kindle I have to read first ;-)


♣ Irish Smurfétté ♣ Yes, my kindle is filled to bursting with unread books, too. ;) :D


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