Also by this author: Blue Steel Chain
Series: Trowchester Blues #2
Also in this series: Blue Steel Chain
Published by Riptide Publishing on April 6, 2015
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Forbidden Love, M/M Romance
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Billy Wright has a problem: he’s only visible when he’s wearing a mask. That’s fine when he’s performing at country fairs with the rest of his morris dancing troupe. But when he takes the paint off, his life is lonely and empty, and he struggles with crippling depression.
Martin Deng stands out from the crowd. After all, there aren’t that many black Vikings on the living history circuit. But as the founder of a fledgling historical re-enactment society, he’s lonely and harried. His boss doesn’t like his weekend activities, his warriors seem to expect him to run everything single-handedly, and it’s stressful enough being one minority without telling the hard men of his group he’s also gay.
When Billy’s and Martin’s societies are double-booked at a packed county show, they know at once they are kindred spirits, united by a deep feeling of connectedness to their history and culture. But they’re also both hiding in their different ways, and they need each other to be brave enough to take their masks off and still be seen.
Erin: It’s always such a treat as a reader to find a book that not only teaches you something new while you read, but also entertains. Such is the case with Alex Beecroft’s Blue Eyed Stranger, book two of her Trowchester Blues series. As always, Beecroft’s writing is elegant and lovely, with very detailed descriptions of places and people. I found the subject of historical reenactments endlessly fascinating so if you are a history buff, you will definitely love this story.
Billy Wright and Martin Deng are such interesting characters, and come from such different backgrounds. Both men are unconventional, as is their relationship. There is next to no steam in this book, but that certainly fits with the atmosphere Beecroft absorbs the story in. Billy’s severe depression coupled with Martin’s struggle with racism are heavy topics and there is a definite up and down throughout the book. Both issues are handled carefully but excellently. No sugarcoating from Alex Beecroft as she portrays Billy’s depression or the ugliness of the racism Martin deals with daily.
I really liked that the plot and setting are unique. The writing is just gorgeous, the secondary characters lend quite a bit to the story, and the descriptions of the dancing and costumes absolutely jumped off the page. If you’re looking for something different, I think this is the book for you.