Trowchester Blues by Alex Beecroft is the perfect combination of unique and well written characters, a detailed plot, and incredible attention to detail. This was a perfect balance of mystery and romance and I will definitely be looking for more books from this author! A copy of this book was provided at no charge in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own and this post contains affiliate links.
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Trowchester Blues by Alex Beecroft
Title: Trowchester Blues
Author: Alex Beecroft
Publisher: Riptide Publishing (February 7, 2015)
Format/Length: 3957 KB/225 pages
Genre: M/M, Mystery, Contemporary
Heat Rating: 3
Star Rating: 5
Michael May is losing it. Long ago, he joined the Metropolitan Police to escape his father’s tyranny and protect people like himself. Now his father is dead, and he’s been fired for punching a suspect. Afraid of his own rage, he returns to Trowchester—and to his childhood home, with all its old fears and memories. When he meets a charming, bohemian bookshop owner who seems to like him, he clings tight.
Fintan Hulme is an honest man now. Five years ago, he retired from his work as a high class London fence and opened a bookshop. Then an old client brings him a stolen book too precious to turn away, and suddenly he’s dealing with arson and kidnapping, to say nothing of all the lies he has to tell his friends. Falling in love with an ex-cop with anger management issues is the last thing he should be doing.
Finn thinks Michael is incredibly sexy. Michael knows Finn is the only thing that still makes him smile. But in a relationship where cops and robbers are natural enemies, that might not be enough to save them.
Let me just say that Trowchester Blues was a phenomenal book. One of the first things that really caught my attention was the author’s writing style itself. The words almost flowed off the page…descriptive and almost poetic at times, the story wasn’t just TOLD but more like SHOWED to the reader.
Trowchester Blues starts out with a rather graphic murder investigation but if you are squeamish, rest assured that it is the only one in the book. The author includes those gory details to show us why Michael is so burnt out. He loves being a cop in the London police department but he cannot stand to see one more brutal murder and his anger finally takes over and he punches a suspect. He realizes that he cannot go on, no matter how much he loves the job and he heads back to his home town to fight the demons of his past. His horrible childhood, abusive dead father, and a house he can’t stand are emotional challenges that need to be tackled.
Finn is an amazing character. So determined to lead a life on the straight and narrow after having lost the love of his life during his life of crime. But, his love of antiquities gets him into trouble when he ‘rescues’ an ancient book from a past associate. His old acquaintances are determined to drag him back into the world of stolen art but he is equally determined to make a new life for himself with Michael.
The secondary characters were incredibly unique and touched on some serious social issues that I would love to see explored more fully. A young runaway, a gender queer teen, and a book club full of nosy gay men round out an incredibly captivating story.
I loved the detail that the author went into in terms of Michael and Finn’s past. Giving us glimpses of Micheal’s childhood and seeing how deeply Finn cared for his past lover…those things are key to who each of the characters is in the present tense. These are fully developed and amazingly well rounded characters and I would honestly love to see another book with them in it.
Trowchester Blues is not exactly an ‘easy’ read. If you just skim through it quickly you will lose the details that really give this book such amazing depth. There is a mystery to solve, a touching romance, a small smattering of sex, and a lot of personal growth for each of the characters. It is definitely a book I recommend you sit down with when you really have the time to enjoy it!
About the Author
Alex Beecroft is an English author best known for historical fiction, notably Age of Sail, featuring gay characters and romantic storylines. Her novels and shorter works include paranormal, fantasy, and contemporary fiction.
Beecroft won Linden Bay Romance’s (now Samhain Publishing) Starlight Writing Competition in 2007 with her first novel, Captain’s Surrender, making it her first published book. On the subject of writing gay romance, Beecroft has appeared in the Charleston City Paper, LA Weekly, the New Haven Advocate, the Baltimore City Paper, and The Other Paper. She is a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association of the UK and an occasional reviewer for the blog Speak Its Name, which highlights historical gay fiction.
Alex was born in Northern Ireland during the Troubles and grew up in the wild countryside of the English Peak District. She lives with her husband and two children in a little village near Cambridge and tries to avoid being mistaken for a tourist.
Alex is only intermittently present in the real world. She has led a Saxon shield wall into battle, toiled as a Georgian kitchen maid, and recently taken up an 800-year-old form of English folk dance, but she still hasn’t learned to operate a mobile phone.
She is represented by Louise Fury of the L. Perkins Literary Agency.
Connect with Alex:
- Website: alexbeecroft.com
- Blog: alexbeecroft.com/blog
- Facebook: facebook.com/AlexBeecroftAuthor
- Twitter: @Alex_Beecroft
- Goodreads: goodreads.com/Alex_Beecroft
Every comment on this blog tour enters you in a drawing for an e-book from Alex Beecroft’s backlist (excepting Trowchester Blues). Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on February 15. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries.