Monday, October 17, 2016

Release Day Review: The First Act by Vanessa Mulberry

Title: The First Act

Author: Vanessa Mulberry
Release Date: October 17, 2016
Category: Historical: European, Mystery/Suspense
Pages: 206

April 1594. William Moodie thinks he’s in love with celebrated actor Richard Brasyer. When Brasyer’s playing company, Goldfox’s Men, comes to town, William is only too willing to leave his country life for the opportunities of the theater and a life in London. Determined to become Richard’s apprentice, William seeks to impress his mentor with his acting—and please him in bed.
Meanwhile, Richard struggles to escape his past as a spy and disentangle himself from the manipulations of his former master and ex-lover, Bennett Goldfox. Swearing off a relationship with his new apprentice proves difficult for Richard, as William uses all his youthful charms to seduce him. When Bennett’s life is threatened, Richard is lured back into the game for one final mission, and he and William travel to Cambridge to hunt down a list of traitors to the Crown.
In the midst of danger and deception, Richard and William come to truly see each other, faults and all, and realize their feelings run deeper than either expected.

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***Copy provided to Bayou Book Junkie by Dreamspinner Press for my reading pleasure in hopes of an unbiased opinion, a review was not a requirement.***

William fancies himself in love with actor Richard Brasyer and manages to convince his cousin to give him a chance in their theater company, where he hopes to become Richard's apprentice and with any luck warm up his bed as well. 

Things aren't as easy as William expects, though, as becoming Richard's apprentice turns out to be easier than seducing him, especially since Richard's former master and ex-lover is intent on having him back and concocts an elaborate scheme to get him to help him out. 

As they get to know each other, William will realize that what he felt before was an infatuation, but now he's really falling for Richard and Richard is discovering there's someone that might actually offer him everything he's always wanted.

This was a fantastic historical novel! I loved that Vanessa Mulberry managed to transport me back in time and showed us how a theater company worked in that time and wove a spy and an MM romantic tale that didn't feel too far-fetched. 

Richard and William were very likable and while they were running in circles around each other at times, it was nice to see their relationship progress. I also liked William's cousin, who had both their interests at heart and always tried to offer them good advice and his support. I hated Bennett, he was awful, which befits a villain, so that was good, I guess. 

If you love historical books that actually have that historic feel, even if they're not completely period-accurate, with some adventure and romance, this is the book for you! Recommendable!

Rating: 4 Stars!!!

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