High highly entertaining and recommended historical romance!
Chasing the Rebel
by Tyler Flynn
Marcus, Lord Rothbury, is on the run. Part of a foiled plot to help King Louis and Queen Marie Antoinette escape to Switzerland, he’s searching for the jewels the rebels stole from the queen—jewels that, when sold in England, will buy the monarchs’ freedom and restore the aristocratic order Marcus holds dear.
Pamphleteer James Lockhart publicly condemns the monarchy and has his own plans for the jewels—selling them to help the Parisian poor. But when the two are thrown together against a common adversary, Marcus finds himself increasingly attracted to the impetuous American.
As they hunt for the jewels, Marcus begins to suspect his companion isn’t all he seems. Secretive and changeable, James could be playing a double game, and Marcus can’t be sure who James is fighting against—the enemy, or the man who’s fallen in love with him.
So what did I think?
Marcus, Lord Rothbury is a British aristocrat living at the French court of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette. After the king and queen are captured by the revolutionary mob and the crown jewels are stolen, Rothbury sets off across the country. He plans to retrieve the jewels, go back to England and use them to ransom the royal family. His journey is complicated when he has to rescue James Lockhart, a young American revolutionary who wants the jewels to feed the poor. Rothbury is a serious and single-minded royalist, and Lockhart is his opposite, careless, cheerful and a man of the people. The two men have nothing in common except the jewels, and, coincidentally, a passionate night they spent together in a Paris garret before history turned ugly.
Rothbury has no choice but to join forces with Lockhart and they set off, pursued by revolutionary soldiers who mistakenly think that Rothbury has the jewels. Together, the pair escape ambush, fire and flood but Rothbury can’t escape from his own thoughts. He is haunted by erotic memories of his night with Lockhart and by an aching attraction for his companion. It doesn’t help that the ever cheerful Lockhart is very open about his own desire, and very scornful of the aristocrat’s plans to ransom the royals. As they get closer to the jewels, Rothbury is torn between his yearning and affection for the charming Lockhart, and by his growing suspicion that the young revolutionary is a spy.
What an exciting French Revolutionary ride! The momentum starts in the first paragraph and doesn’t let up until the end. It’s a fairly simple plot, but the author is a good writer so the story keeps moving and the settings are so vivid that you can see 18th century France in your head. The opposite nature of the two characters is deftly written. Rothbury is fairly humorless at the beginning, but Lockhart keeps stumbling into trouble and talking and talking and being cheerful and he has no choice but to warm up. There are some very funny parts where Lockhart blunders into danger and Rothbury throws up his hands in exasperation before he rides to the rescue. There is also a lot of sexual tension. The author peppers the story with Rothbury’s erotic memories of his night with Lockhart and it winds things so tightly that when the two of them finally fall into each other’s arms you are practically cheering.
This was a great read. The love story was satisfying and the relationship between the two characters was very entertaining. Highly recommended.