Lord Byron’s Secret Obsession, by H.C. Brown
Publisher: Momentum Books/Moonlight (August 27, 2015)
Page Count: 182 pages
Genre: Gay (M/M) Erotica/Romance
Rating: 2 out of 5
Warnings: rape, non-con, dub-con, sexual slavery (highlight to read)
My Thoughts: This is basically the M/M equivalent of a cheap romance novel. You know the kind I mean– the ones that sell for a quarter in bargain sale bins, and no one ever admits to reading them. If the title alone doesn’t scream “cheesy erotica” to you, then you might want to stop reading this review now. Just from the opening scene, I had no doubt that this was going to be nothing more than a quick-and-dirty read.
The premise isn’t a bad one: two men in Georgian era in England fall in love, at a time when such relationships are punishable by death. When Lord Byron is unwilling to risk prison for his young lover’s jealousy, he leaves Lord David to go to the Americas for three years. Upon his return, his lover has gotten himself into serious debt, and has sold his body to another man in payment.
My biggest issue here was Byron. To put it plainly, he was a giant dick, and really stuck-up, throwing his power and title around to get what he wanted. It made the book boring. “Trouble? Byron is a Lord, he’ll fix this in seconds!” or “Oh, he needs to stop the bad guy? Let him throw some money around and use his connections to get this taken care of.” He never struggles, everything is easy and simple.
Even his view of David, who has been raped and abused, is all about Byron… he wants his lover, and he keeps pushing for what he wants under the guise of giving David space. And I couldn’t figure out why he supposedly loved David so much…
On a side note, the blatant misogyny was really frustrating. I don’t know how period-accurate that is, because I grew up reading Jane Austen who, while slightly later than this novel’s time period, wrote about women as though they were people, not belongings. It made me dislike Byron even more.
Final word? The sex wasn’t particularly great (“bunghole” is such an unsexy term, ugh!), the characters were awful, and the plot mediocre. It’s not unreadable, but not a shining example of the genre, either.
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