The Low Road - James Lear

Ladymol's Review

By the author of one of our favourites, The Palace of Varieties, James Lear does it again! This is an incredibly sexy romp through a very (loosely based) Jacobite adventure.

The book is relentless sex from cover to cover, but it’s always fun, sexy and cheekily written. The narrator, Charlie (very like the narrator in Variety) knows he really shouldn’t be doing what he’s doing, but he carries on doing it anyway! With everyone! Everywhere!

The author makes good use of a loose story of a young Highland landowner trying to rescue an enigmatic Frenchman from the clutches of the evil English. It gives Charlie, the hero and narrator, the opportunity to meet stable hands, soldiers, pirates, prisoners and to take them all in varying ways. It’s the sheer variety of the sex that really gets to you. There’s even some cross-dressing, which is just huge fun and very sexy to read.

Don’t worry if you know nothing about the Jacobite rebellion—you won’t after reading this, either.

Is this porn? Well, that depends on your definitions of that. I’d say no—it’s too well written. But it’s not going to tax the brain either.

It’s exactly what it purports to be and pretty well perfect for that.

Highly recommended if your sex life is a little jaded and needs a blast of sexy Scottish air. As with Variety though, don’t take this to read on the train to work!

Cerisaye's Review

A rollicking yarn in similar vein to Lear’s captivating literary erotica, Palace of Varieties.  From the opening pages where Charles Gordon, nubile master of the house gets it on with a taciturn, sexually adventurous family servant: trysts in the hay barn, over a saddle, etc.  His mother turns a blind eye to her son’s activities, until he persuades his playmate to spill the beans on family secrets.

A sexy French priest arrives to tutor our precocious hero. Familiar gothic novel scenario:  resented intruder treated with icy disdain, seething resentment turns to love, unbidden. 

Too late.  The unfortunate foreigner is carted off by Redcoats, and Charles, all of 18, resolves to storm the castle and rescue the man he loves.

The story is set 5 years after the disaster of Culloden.  Supporters of Bonnie Prince Charlie, are hounded by the Hanoverian regime, and the Highlands laid waste to suppress resurgent Jacobitism. 

Our hero is willingly seduced, then shanghaied by unscrupulous mercenaries following an orgy, while he dreams of an army of lovers to aid his cause. 

Meanwhile Benoit Labecque, Charles’ tutor, languishes in an English gaol in Fort William.

Charles awakens at sea.  Within minutes he’s pleasuring a sailor on punishment duty.  Charles is the onboard entertainment for the voyage. 

While Charles has a ball with captain and crew, poor Labecque remains incarcerated, sustained by writing erotic letters to the scamp who’s captivated him.  Things take a turn for the better when he’s released from solitary, and finds a protector, who instructs him in the arts of sexual pleasure.

Meanwhile, Charles too has a bit of luck:  Captain Moore takes a fancy to the boy, and arranges for him to stay onboard rather than handed over to the English.  He enjoys his maritime adventure, pampered and satisfied, relishing the role of captain’s slut.  Lebecque, sadly, forgotten.  Ah fickle youth.

A month of debauchery and the now-19 year-old’s gargantuan appetites are jaded.  Plagued by guilt, Charles escapes.  Washed ashore, he bumps into an escaped prisoner from Fort William, Morgan, Labecque’s protector, who tells Charles that Labecque loves him.  Charles is ready to settle down, having sowed more than his share of wild oats.  But Morgan carries bad news:  Labecque is no longer at Fort William.

You get a series of juicy porn scenarios strung together with a standard 18th C romantic adventure plot, Robert Louis Stevenson given a gay makeover and lots of hot sex..  But Lear carries it off with style. A jolly romp in the heather, no man immune to Charles’ seductive charms.  Shameless and insatiable, young Charles is good company.  Swept along by the story, I relaxed into enjoying the ride, satiated with generous dollops of hard man-sex.  Who says history is dull?!

Disguised as an English spy, Charlie-boy resumes the quest to track down Labecque.  That I cared he succeed indicates this novel is a cut above stroke material.  The sex is relentless, like being slapped round the face with that proud appendage Charles uses with abandon.  But it’s well written, varied and very much consensual. 

Proudly, unashamedly gay, the book was the perfect antidote to the bad taste left by nastily heterocentric TV movie Forgive and Forget (I’m trying). A coming of age story, as Charles learns more than how to suck & fuck like a man, taking on entire garrisons of soldiers.  He grows up, but will he find Labecque? 

We cover all genres, good writing our only request, whether classic gay lit or porn.  This novel easily makes the cut.  Very highly recommended.  Excellent bedtime reading!

Published Millivres-Prowler Group Ltd. ISBN: 1873741669

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