Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Trick of Time by JL Merrow

Why I read it:  I picked this up from NetGalley as soon as I heard there was a new JL Merrow available.

What it's about:  (from Goodreads)  A lover from another time

When Ted Ennis steps out the doors of the Criterion Theatre for a cigarette and finds himself in Victorian London, he begins to doubt his sanity. At first he thinks it's all a film set, and is sure that the strikingly handsome young man leaning against a lamppost must be the leading man…

What starts as a sordid transaction with a beautiful rent boy quickly turns into something much deeper, drawing him back again and again as he gets to know Jem and craves meaningful encounters with him.

But Ted doesn't understand the exact conditions necessary for his trips through time—and for Jem, time may actually be running out. Now Ted has one last shot to get back to Jem and save their relationship, before it's too late…

What worked for me (and what didn't): This delightful story was a perfect evening's read, coming in at just over 80 pages long.  After spending some time on Twitter in the past few days talking about how writing short is a special talent and how, often in a shorter format, an established couple is going to work better for me to believe the HEA, this book comes along and shows me that in rare cases, it doesn't have to be this way for me to enjoy it.

I think the time travel aspect of the book added to the fairy tale quality and that meant that I was more forgiving of the early connection and declarations of love. 

I would have liked to have had more information about Ted's injuries, his prognosis (mainly because I'm like that I think) but he had my full sympathies very early on and I was only too pleased that he found someone else to love.

I suppose Jem was a bit of a cipher - the story is told from Ted's POV so we don't get a lot of what's going on in Jem's head, but, in keeping with the fairy tale quality of the story, I was prepared to accept him at face value.  

Which is odd don't you think?  If the story hadn't been a time travel story but Ted just met up with a male prostitute outside the theatre in his own time, I don't think it could have worked for me.  But, this did.

I closed the book with a smile on my face and extra confidence in this author's ability to always satisfy.

Grade:  B

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