Erryn reviews ‘The Art of Mutual Pleasure (M/M Regency)’ by K. A. Merikan. Published by Acerbi & Villani ltd on March 29, 2017, 164 pgs. The audiobook was released June 4, 2020, is narrated by James Reily and is 4hrs and 25min. A copy was provided in exchange for an honest review.
Why I read this book: I enjoyed The Black Sheep and the Rotten Apple so was game to try another historical by the Merikans.
“The path to debauchery is strewn with good intentions….”
Benjamin Snowley is trapped in a most distressing predicament. He’s been feeling poorly and after having recently recovered from influenza, he knows that the fault for his declining health lies in a vice he wouldn’t dare mention in polite conversation.
Onanism, self-pollution, masturbation. All names for the same sinful affliction.
For Benjamin, it all started back at school, where he first encountered the immoral Frederick Cory. Ever since then, the man has been plaguing Benjamin’s dreams and causing most unnatural urges.
Now is the time for all the infatuation nonsense to stop. With the help of an unorthodox doctor and an indecent proposition to a young stablehand, Benjamin will rid himself of the vile addiction.
But can the experimental treatment be enough to make him forget his feelings for Frederick?
Warning: Contains a clueless young man on a futile quest for chastity and a libertine artist eager to rid him of that goal.
Themes: masturbation, historical attitudes to sexuality, medicine, doctor, guilt, unorthodox treatment, master/servant, groom, superstition, moral failure, enemies to lovers
Genre: M/M Regency romance
Other content: explicit language, inappropriate medical examination, cum swallowing, bareback, sex toys, body worship, multiple partners
The Quest for Chastity
Benjamin is a young man who has been taught that masturbation is wrong. Not only wrong, but will cause loss of strength, ill health, and blindness. In today’s society with modern medicine and progressive notions, most people no longer hold these beliefs. In Regency England, though, these notions abounded. He’s desperate so he seeks out the help of one very unconventional doctor who makes a very odd suggestion as to how Benjamin might regain his strength. Dutifully, Benjamin propositions a man working in his stable and they begin an unconventional relationship. I was touched by Tom’s gentleness and wondered if this might be the central love story.
Alas, ‘twas not to be. Tom went home and Benjamin returned to the city, determined to maintain the new health and vigor he’s found. His methods are, to say the least, unorthodox. When he encounters Frederick all bets are off. He’d always been enamored with the man but having sex with a man was unthinkable. Or had been.
Frederick is amused to come across his former classmate in flagrante delicto with not one but several men. What happened to the uptight student who believed fornication between two men led to eternal damnation? Having always had an eye on Benjamin, Frederick sets about to put the young man’s mind at ease that there’s nothing wrong with sex between men.
Now, the spoilers for this book are meant to entice the reader into trying this m/m Regency romance. I don’t do many historicals but am glad I picked up this one. I find K.A. Merikan books hit and miss with me and this one was a hit. I enjoyed it. James Reily narrates their British books and I find he does a good job. He handled this one with aplomb and I look forward to the next historical by this writing duo.
8.5/10 Pots of Gold (85% Recommended) – Compares to 4.25/5 Stars
K. A. Merikan is the pen name for Kat and Agnes Merikan, a team of writers, who are taken for sisters with surprising regularity.
They love the weird and wonderful, stepping out of the box, and bending stereotypes both in life and books. When you pick up a Merikan book, there’s one thing you can be sure of – it will be full of surprises.
To keep up to date with their new releases (and get a free book in the process!) sign up to their newsletter: http://kamerikan.com/newsletter
More information about ongoing projects, works in progress and publishing at:
K.A. Merikan’s author page: http://kamerikan.com
– We are Polish,
– We’re neither sisters nor a couple,
– Kat’s an artist, and Agnes is a psychologist but neither works in her field,
– Kat’s fingers are two times longer than Agnes’s.