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Beguiled

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This is a second edition of a book previously published by Samhain Publishing. Two years after his last encounter with cynical nobleman Lord Murdo Balfour, David Lauriston accidentally meets him again in the heart of Edinburgh. King George IV is about to make his first visit to Edinburgh and Murdo has been sent North by his politician father to represent his aristocratic fam This is a second edition of a book previously published by Samhain Publishing. Two years after his last encounter with cynical nobleman Lord Murdo Balfour, David Lauriston accidentally meets him again in the heart of Edinburgh. King George IV is about to make his first visit to Edinburgh and Murdo has been sent North by his politician father to represent his aristocratic family at the celebrations. David and Murdo’s last parting was painful—and on Murdo’s part, bitter—but Murdo’s feelings seem to have mellowed in the intervening years. So much so, that he suggests to David that they enjoy each other’s company during Murdo’s stay in the capital. Despite his initial reservations, David cannot put Murdo’s proposal from his mind, and soon find himself at Murdo’s door—and in his arms. But other figures from David’s past are converging on the city, and as the pomp and ceremony of the King’s visit unfolds around them, David is drawn into a chain of events that will threaten everything: his career, his wellbeing, and the fragile bond that, despite David’s best intentions, is growing between him and Murdo.


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This is a second edition of a book previously published by Samhain Publishing. Two years after his last encounter with cynical nobleman Lord Murdo Balfour, David Lauriston accidentally meets him again in the heart of Edinburgh. King George IV is about to make his first visit to Edinburgh and Murdo has been sent North by his politician father to represent his aristocratic fam This is a second edition of a book previously published by Samhain Publishing. Two years after his last encounter with cynical nobleman Lord Murdo Balfour, David Lauriston accidentally meets him again in the heart of Edinburgh. King George IV is about to make his first visit to Edinburgh and Murdo has been sent North by his politician father to represent his aristocratic family at the celebrations. David and Murdo’s last parting was painful—and on Murdo’s part, bitter—but Murdo’s feelings seem to have mellowed in the intervening years. So much so, that he suggests to David that they enjoy each other’s company during Murdo’s stay in the capital. Despite his initial reservations, David cannot put Murdo’s proposal from his mind, and soon find himself at Murdo’s door—and in his arms. But other figures from David’s past are converging on the city, and as the pomp and ceremony of the King’s visit unfolds around them, David is drawn into a chain of events that will threaten everything: his career, his wellbeing, and the fragile bond that, despite David’s best intentions, is growing between him and Murdo.

30 review for Beguiled

  1. 5 out of 5

    Heather K (dentist in my spare time)

    Suuuuuper strong. Two years has passed since our men have seen each other, but the chemistry is just as palpable as before. And the feels.... ah, the feels! They will slay you. I launched right into this one after finishing Provoked, and I'm so happy I did. After the first one left me hanging, I just had to know what happened next. And the story just continued to progress beautifully. I liked this more self-assured David. He was more settled, more mature, but I loved that he retained that sense Suuuuuper strong. Two years has passed since our men have seen each other, but the chemistry is just as palpable as before. And the feels.... ah, the feels! They will slay you. I launched right into this one after finishing Provoked, and I'm so happy I did. After the first one left me hanging, I just had to know what happened next. And the story just continued to progress beautifully. I liked this more self-assured David. He was more settled, more mature, but I loved that he retained that sense of honesty that defined him. He was more at peace with his feelings for Murdo, and he allowed the relationship to become something greater than just possibilities. I also adored this more determined Murdo. Murdo was also less... arrogant, less intimidating, and more focused than ever on David. Murdo is a force to be reckoned with when he sets his mind to something, and he set his mind on David. The way they come together, slowly but like a tornado slowly spiraling towards something inevitable, was magical to witness. The plot is also rich with excitement, enough to keep you on your toes but not enough to detract from the brewing romance. You won't be able to look away. The setting? Gorgeous. The romance? Getting more and more intense. The plotline? Exhilarating. The dialogue? Period-appropriate and lovely to read. The sex? Hotter than ever! Romancy, extremely well written, and a beautiful story, this is shaping up to be a romance for the ages! *Copy provided in exchange for an honest review*

  2. 4 out of 5

    Judith

    4.5 “I don’t know what this thing between us is,” Murdo said, and he sounded genuinely bewildered. “But I can’t give it up. I can’t give you up.” SWOONING!! I honestly don't know why i waited so long to read this after Provoked.It's official,Murdo and David have moved up to second place in my favourite MM couples list! I LOVED EVERYTHING ABOUT THIS. -delicious clandestine meetings, -smouldering passion and sexual tension, -great plot incorporated into the story so well, WELL IMPRESSED!! O 4.5 “I don’t know what this thing between us is,” Murdo said, and he sounded genuinely bewildered. “But I can’t give it up. I can’t give you up.” SWOONING!! I honestly don't know why i waited so long to read this after Provoked.It's official,Murdo and David have moved up to second place in my favourite MM couples list! I LOVED EVERYTHING ABOUT THIS. -delicious clandestine meetings, -smouldering passion and sexual tension, -great plot incorporated into the story so well, WELL IMPRESSED!! Off to start book three.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Susan

    God this book was amazing!!!!!! I dove right into book 2 of this series the day after finishing Provoked. True, the ending to book 1 was abrupt and I wanted to know what happened next. But mostly because the main characters, David and Murdo, haunted me. I couldn’t stop thinking about them and wondering where the story would go next. I loved this book. It was romantic and endearing and tender. It was action-packed, suspenseful, and heart-racing. It was sexy and smoldering and *sigh*-inducing. In th God this book was amazing!!!!!! I dove right into book 2 of this series the day after finishing Provoked. True, the ending to book 1 was abrupt and I wanted to know what happened next. But mostly because the main characters, David and Murdo, haunted me. I couldn’t stop thinking about them and wondering where the story would go next. I loved this book. It was romantic and endearing and tender. It was action-packed, suspenseful, and heart-racing. It was sexy and smoldering and *sigh*-inducing. In this book, we saw David come into his own. He’s successful, he’s more sure of himself, he’s more open and daring. Yet, he remained his steadfast and honorable self. I loved his integrity…in both books. But, I really loved seeing him find his voice in book 2 – asking for what he WANTED. And what he wanted was Murdo. And Murdo…he’s such a MAN…and I mean that in the sense that he’s the protector and the care-taker and the he just MAKES SHIT HAPPEN and you just KNOW everything’s gonna be ok when he’s there. I lurve him so much. And I LURVE him for David so much! The growth of their relationship, their conversations, their soul and heart opening admissions to each other about their pasts…gah!!!!...I ate this UP…I savored every word! You can actually SEE them falling in love as you turn each page and it’s…amazing. There is a side story about a character, Elizabeth, that is SO SO EXCITING. I held my breath every time this storyline came on page. …intense and powerful and showed off the best of our MC’s. The range of emotions (anger, fear, anxiety, hope, sadness, worry…) caught me off guard and I found myself just hanging on for the ride! The ending carriage ride was so freaking sweet and romantic I cried and did NOT want my percentage marker on my Kindle to go higher. I don’t want to wait for book 3. I want…I WANT…I NEEEEEED it…NOW! I initially was going to rate this 4.5 stars…it was near flawless for me. But since I still can’t get the boys out of my head and the beauty of this book still fills my heart, I’m going all in with 5 stars! Bring on book 3!!!

  4. 5 out of 5

    Simone

    June 2020: Audiobook = ***3.5 - 4 Stars*** ************************ ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️  and I'm in love!!! Is it too early for me to say that this will be my favorite m/m historical series ever? Maybe, but I don't think so... I know that there are plenty of series out there to discover, but... Guys, you will have quite a difficult, if not impossible stand to come even close to Murdo, that's for certain. I could never resist a man in a kilt on a black horse... ... with a personality like that. I want a June 2020: Audiobook = ***3.5 - 4 Stars*** ************************ ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️  and I'm in love!!! Is it too early for me to say that this will be my favorite m/m historical series ever? Maybe, but I don't think so... I know that there are plenty of series out there to discover, but... Guys, you will have quite a difficult, if not impossible stand to come even close to Murdo, that's for certain. I could never resist a man in a kilt on a black horse... ... with a personality like that. I want a Murdo for myself!  Please tell me there will be a HEA for him and David. Pretty please? *off to find out myself*

  5. 5 out of 5

    Ingie

    Written March 23, 2014 5 Grand Stars - amazing good - just stunning wonderful to meet these MC's again - a couple to really love and care for Book #2 I read a great book the other day, I LOVED it. It was the first part Provoked (4.5 stars from me) in a historical three part series, (Enlightenment) by Joanna Chambers. This second book is the continuing story about two gorgeous mens journey (and way against HEA love perhaps) in the 1820s Edinburgh in Scotland. ~<>~<>~<>~<>~<>~<>~ ...1822 Edinburgh, Sc Written March 23, 2014 5 Grand Stars - amazing good - just stunning wonderful to meet these MC's again - a couple to really love and care for Book #2 I read a great book the other day, I LOVED it. It was the first part Provoked (4.5 stars from me) in a historical three part series, (Enlightenment) by Joanna Chambers. This second book is the continuing story about two gorgeous mens journey (and way against HEA love perhaps) in the 1820s Edinburgh in Scotland. ~<>~<>~<>~<>~<>~<>~ ...1822 Edinburgh, Scotland Beguile is the continuing grand love story about the man 'of the people', David Lauriston and the noble dandy, Lord Murdo Balfour. Not a completely simple journey for love in a still homophobic society where sex between men is prohibited both by the British State laws and ecclesiastical values. It's been two years since we met them last and it is now the summer 1822 when the British ("England's") king is on a grand visit with great fanfare in Scotland. The Scottish people celebrate and in Edinburgh is it festival and party on the city's streets and squares. David needs the new, assigned, clothing in the Scottish colors. At the tailor, he meets by chance the man that his heart still bolts hot and intense for. Lord Murdo Balfour is back in Edinburgh... ‘He could no more walk away from this than a starving man could refuse bread. And what pleasure. These kisses. The intimacy of them.’ David has by now a much more shinier lawyer (advocate) career. He has moved to a nicer apartment, he earns more money and have a bit more prestige. Though David has of course, in no way, forget his old strong ideals, morality and ambition of wanting to help. When old friends are in need he cannot but try to help. For me personally, is this series the very best kind of historical romance. The one with the traditional style with noble men (bigger-than-life heroes like Murdo), a witty and sweetie ("heroine") of the people (..our lovely David) and a lot of glam and glamor. Not to forget; kisses and steam, agnst, misunderstandings, a lot of banter, big feelings, some tears (from me) etc. ~ But also with a strong focus on a portion of equity and social problems, then, two hundred years ago. This time it deals with the story of David's support and help to a good old female friend. It's a dark story about cruel wife battering and men's immense power over their wives at this time. We also get the chance to enjoy the almost comical in how a royal "English" guest (the King) was treated and honored. ...Chuckle-worthy, like a semi-funny joke. ~<>~<>~<>~<>~<>~<>~ David Lauriston's and Lord Murdo Balfour's grand love story started in a heartbreaking way (and so very yummy) in the first book. David is still a bit hesitant about his inner feelings and needs, but when the Lord asks for a meeting can he no longer resist the temptation. It gets steaming hot, heart-thumping beautiful and I was just a big romantic silly smile. This story is pure romantic pleasure. A rebound is now in sight. ~ I want more, much more, soonish or actually NOW immediately. Please!! “You're not an abormination, David. You're--beautiful,” # Dear sweet David, you captured my heart in the first book and I love you even more by now. You dared this time, and then there's the chance to win... # Lord Murdo Balfour, you're a tempting conqueror and still a "dandy" but you showed us another greater man now also. I wasn't sure about you in the first book but wow... you're a man to fight for. ‘Enjoying the tentative intimacy that was growing between them and that felt almost tangible, here, in this warm, secret corner of the world.’ ~<>~<>~<>~<>~<>~<>~ Enlightenment is a highly recommended, three books series, in the historical genre. (not a story spoiler..) (view spoiler)[If you like, or used to read a lot of, m/f historicals - with the Lord's & Noble and cynical, larger-than-life heroes and lovely, witty heroines - am I sure you will enjoy this M/M version also. (hide spoiler)] ~ Beguiled is a wonderful and amazing good second installment (even better than the first great one). It was a pleasure to take part of this early 1900 century city-life in Scotland a second time. Very well done Ms Joanna Chambers! I'm, of course, waiting eagerly and impatiently for the last third part, Enlightened. ...and yesterday was my lucky day. I got an copy to review (my ARC...review to come) - hurray!! Nothing is yet nailed and there is still much to tell. ...But these lovebirds are on the right track, and I so want to see an earth-shattering epic HEA to their tale. I LIKE - very much - seduced and enamored one more time ~~~~~~~~~~~~ # ...and Thanks "Spring-Santa" (view spoiler)[Bev, it's your kindness which maked this book "jump" from the huge bookstore to my e-reader. (hide spoiler)] # The historical Enlightenment 3-books series: ..and in May

  6. 4 out of 5

    Ami

    This story was simply dazzling and profoundly romantic. My heart felt like it was melting with love... "Beguiled" is the second installment of a series entitled "Enlightenment”. It is set in a historical period ... and trust me when I say that this series is SO GOOD, I actually forgot that I dislike the historical genre in general. The writing is a beauty but I guess the strength lies in the characters. David was simply a darling – a gentle soul, he had an ingenuity flair in him that I found ende This story was simply dazzling and profoundly romantic. My heart felt like it was melting with love... "Beguiled" is the second installment of a series entitled "Enlightenment”. It is set in a historical period ... and trust me when I say that this series is SO GOOD, I actually forgot that I dislike the historical genre in general. The writing is a beauty but I guess the strength lies in the characters. David was simply a darling – a gentle soul, he had an ingenuity flair in him that I found endearing. However, he also became stronger and more courageous than the first book without losing his integrity . There was a significant change in him, after the encounter with Murdo two years ago. Previously, David thought of being with a man as sin – even if he refused to live a lie and marry a woman. But here, David admitted that it started to make him angry, how society judged a man who lied in bed with another man. And Murdo Balfour, ah, Lord Murdo... In Provoked I found him as this dashing arrogant rake who sometimes looked down to David’s principles. But here, oh, MY, how two years changed. He was less arrogant, David definitely got under his skin – and Murdo admitted that he missed David. Here, Murdo was like David’s “knight in shining armor”. Not that David was a damsel in distress, but Murdo ensured that David’s well-being and needs were taken care of. Even if David didn’t tell Murdo everything. What could I say about the two of them? Their chemistry was lovely, their sexual tension was gorgeous ... I LOVED that first meeting after two years. GAH THE TENSION!!! Did you know, I had my hand LITERALLY on my chest almost throughout the whole book, because it was so, so romantic. I LOVED how they talked to one another, the soul barring session ... and then, the sex. *Sigh, the sex*. I actually sent a text message to Susan – who finished the book before I did, asking whether they would have penetration sex. She said they did, and it was “glorious”. Well, GLORIOUS it was. So good and so worth the wait! And the ending? Well, it’s not completely HEA yet, we still have book 3 coming, but it was less subdued than book 1. It was passionate, it was tender, it was ... flawlessly hopeful *sigh* But wait, it wasn’t just about the romance – there was quite an action and suspenseful plot here too. It involved Lady Elizabeth (whom in "Provoked" had a crush over David) who’s trapped in a marriage with an abusive man. We got David – and his friend Euan – trying to get Elizabeth to escape and it was intense!! So final words? It is simply one of the best romances I’ve read this year. It is the kind of story that stays with me after awhile. Also a kind of story that can make me break my own policy of not doing re-reading. So yes, I could only gave my rare 5-stars. I couldn’t find anything to complain. Not a single thing – except maybe WHY BOOK 3 IS NOT OUT YET!?! The ARC is provided by the author for an exchange of fair and honest review. No high rating is required for any ARC received.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Meags

    4 Stars This M/M historical series continues to impress. Picking up two long years after the events of Provoked, David Lauriston and Lord Murdo Balfour are reunited when Murdo returns to Edinburgh during the much publicised and celebrated King’s visit of 1822. With their last contact ending on somewhat of a penitent note, the chance to share time together once again is an opportunity too good to pass up, regardless of the potential risks—namely risks of the heart. Where David was once hesitant and 4 Stars This M/M historical series continues to impress. Picking up two long years after the events of Provoked, David Lauriston and Lord Murdo Balfour are reunited when Murdo returns to Edinburgh during the much publicised and celebrated King’s visit of 1822. With their last contact ending on somewhat of a penitent note, the chance to share time together once again is an opportunity too good to pass up, regardless of the potential risks—namely risks of the heart. Where David was once hesitant and even at times regretful of his interactions with Murdo in the past, he’s since learned, in the aftermath of their previously brief time together, that life is too short for regrets. Where shame of his sexual proclivities once ruled his thoughts and actions, David’s impassioned and oftentimes provocative exchanges with Murdo allowed him to open up his mind, heart and body to a world of new and stimulating experiences that he hasn’t easily forgotten. Knowing, once again, that their time together may be short, David and Murdo try to schedule in as many shared moments as possible, both private and public, all while carrying on with their professional and civic duties during the King’s renowned visit. To add further complications to their already complicated lives, David becomes immersed in helping Elizabeth Chalmers (daughter of his boss) out of a violent marriage, using the assistance and know-how of his old friend, political radical Euan MacLennan. This one started slowly and sedately, but once all the pieces were effectively in place, the story really took off, holding my rapt attention and making my heart skip and swoon as the tension and romance reached a crescendo. I enjoyed the plot and the character interactions immensely, and I continued to be awed by the way Chambers so vividly created her own (impressively detailed and accurate) version of 19th century Scotland. As for the relationship between David and Murdo? Well, let’s just say I’m appropriately swooning over these two men and their perfectly paced romance. I’m now eagerly looking forward to reading the final chapter of their story in Enlightened.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Richard Derus

    Rating: 4* of five One quote to rule the book: A man will fight for hate for a long time, but he will fight for love to the death. Every single moment of this entry into the series is about Murdo's hate for the way his world wants him to behave, and his love for David, which is (he very much fears) unreciprocated. It is also about how deeply David detests his weakness of character that forbids him to turn his face to his true love and say, simply and directly, "I love you, Murdo." These men fight lik Rating: 4* of five One quote to rule the book: A man will fight for hate for a long time, but he will fight for love to the death. Every single moment of this entry into the series is about Murdo's hate for the way his world wants him to behave, and his love for David, which is (he very much fears) unreciprocated. It is also about how deeply David detests his weakness of character that forbids him to turn his face to his true love and say, simply and directly, "I love you, Murdo." These men fight like wounded Spartans at Thermopylae for the victory of love...for others...and end up with a situation neither could've planned, predicted, laid a course for, and that perfectly suits their almost desperate hunger for space and time to revel in the love they share. And can't admit they share because Rules and Reasons. The historical aspects of the series please me, the characters are limned economically if, at times, a bit repetitively...one more of Murdo's "fractional relaxation"s and Imma cut a bitch....and the timelessness of men's cowardliness in the face of vulnerability makes volume 3 a must-read. Reviewer Heather_k described the series as one long novel. I concur. Start at the beginning, read to the end; there is short fiction entry, Seasons Pass, which is best read for free before reading this book; unless, of course, like a certain other reviewer who has vanished into the memory of pixels, the story makes you "rageface" by the 20% mark in which case Kindle it not.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Christelle

    Third time and it gets to me even more. --------------------------------- LOVED IT : It’s so compelling that, even if it’s my second read, I can’t get enough of it : the historical background, David’s turmoil, the passion and hotness between David and Murdo ….and what to say about Murdo….**endless sighs** Going straight to the next instalment !!! ---------- Initial review ---------- 2nd part of the enlightenment series : the riveting journey of David and Murdo set in the 19th century in Scotland. Th Third time and it gets to me even more. --------------------------------- LOVED IT : It’s so compelling that, even if it’s my second read, I can’t get enough of it : the historical background, David’s turmoil, the passion and hotness between David and Murdo ….and what to say about Murdo….**endless sighs** Going straight to the next instalment !!! ---------- Initial review ---------- 2nd part of the enlightenment series : the riveting journey of David and Murdo set in the 19th century in Scotland. This is getting better and better. As mentioned in my review of the 1st book, if you’re not into historical fiction (which is my case), it’s really 100% worth a try Now that the scene and characters have been set up in the first book, this part is about the building of the relationship between David and Murdo at the time of the visit of the King of England in Edinburgh, in a society where women are considered “properties” of their husband. This part is pure mix of romance, emotions, suspense. Why rating it as "a favorite" ? Because I hold my breath and my pulse rate was high while reading this book. I was enthralled by the development of the relationship between David and Murdo, by their admissions, bit by bit, of their feelings for each other and by the plot.

  10. 5 out of 5

    K.J. Charles

    Sigh. Lovely writing, lovely men, lovely historical setting that really informs the action and characterisation, lovely character development, lovely lead in to book 3. Now give me the third one or I will hurt you.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Teal

    2020 reread: Still 4 stars, and I've added some thoughts below, at the end of my original review. ______ A solid second entry in the series, yet I didn't find it as exceptional as the first. Even so, there were a few times when an insight or an emotion was expressed so poignantly, so movingly, that it pierced me right through the heart. My (relative) dissatisfaction was due to the changes in Murdo's character. In the first book, I didn't like him. But I liked that I didn't like him. It was obvi 2020 reread: Still 4 stars, and I've added some thoughts below, at the end of my original review. ______ A solid second entry in the series, yet I didn't find it as exceptional as the first. Even so, there were a few times when an insight or an emotion was expressed so poignantly, so movingly, that it pierced me right through the heart. My (relative) dissatisfaction was due to the changes in Murdo's character. In the first book, I didn't like him. But I liked that I didn't like him. It was obvious that he would have to undergo a transformative journey in order to become a man capable of falling in love. In other words, he was due for a comeuppance -- and I wanted to see him get it. But when the story picks up, two years down the road, Murdo is no longer the same domineering, sarcastic, emotionally distant and vaguely manipulative bastard he was in Provoked. Instead we get a kinder, gentler Murdo -- which means his transformation (perhaps precipitated by having known David, perhaps not) occurred off-stage. I felt cheated. So I'm still not convinced that Provoked shouldn't have been a stand-alone novel. Of course in that case it wouldn't have been a romance; it would have been something I'd have to file on my "Broke My Heart" shelf. I'm hoping book 3 will make me grateful that this is a trilogy. ______ 2020: I spent most of the reread wondering why I'd originally given this only 4 stars. The mood, the setting, and the characterization were all complex and nuanced. And this time around I had the benefit of knowing that Murdo's personality shift, which I griped about in my original review, was addressed to my satisfaction in Seasons Pass -- which is chronologically #1.5 in the series, but should only be read after book 3 because of spoilers. Yet in the end my choice of 4 stars held. There's a subplot -- although "subplot" makes it sound too trivial, when in fact it's what drives the second half of the story -- that was great as a premise, but I felt was somewhat lacking in execution. Plus, the story ends deep in (view spoiler)[hurt/comfort (hide spoiler)] trope territory, and that trope simply isn't one I enjoy. So, 4 stars it is, but it's a damn good book with remarkable MCs, and I'm eager to continue with the series reread.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Shile

    5+++++++ stars Murdo and David! these two are so good together that i could not help myself but smile while reading this. “I don’t know what this thing between us is,” Murdo said, and he sounded genuinely bewildered. “But I can’t give it up. I can’t give you up.” Me too Murdo, Me too. This book just flows effortlessly, it is just.. just.. i don't know how to describe it, the words just flow..... I loved it so much! 5+++++++ stars Murdo and David! these two are so good together that i could not help myself but smile while reading this. “I don’t know what this thing between us is,” Murdo said, and he sounded genuinely bewildered. “But I can’t give it up. I can’t give you up.” Me too Murdo, Me too. This book just flows effortlessly, it is just.. just.. i don't know how to describe it, the words just flow..... I loved it so much!

  13. 5 out of 5

    Ariana

    Reread June 2020 Absolutely swoon-worthy, and totally worth all the stars! Upped my rating accordingly! original review Two years is a long time. Long enough to forget, long enough to learn. David has not forgotten Murdo, but he has learnt something from their encounter: "Life was easier sometimes, when you didn't know what you were missing." And even the few hours he spent with Murdo have shown him that he is missing something. And when he meets Murdo by chance again and of course cannot stay away, Reread June 2020 Absolutely swoon-worthy, and totally worth all the stars! Upped my rating accordingly! original review Two years is a long time. Long enough to forget, long enough to learn. David has not forgotten Murdo, but he has learnt something from their encounter: "Life was easier sometimes, when you didn't know what you were missing." And even the few hours he spent with Murdo have shown him that he is missing something. And when he meets Murdo by chance again and of course cannot stay away, he feels ... "no regret, no panic.... (but) more at peace than he normally did, as though all the jumbled parts of himself had been set right overnight. In short, David learns himself, and Murdo is only too ready to coax the other man out of his shell. It is a revelation for David when he realizes he is allowed a life and love, too. And my heart sighed with joy when he starts considering... the possibility of tenderness and affection. The possibility of honesty, of being known by another. Things he'd ruled out for himself. Things that were too painful to hope for. Loved the pull and push between these two, the simmering passion and love. Murdo is so in love (still) and does everything he can to 'keep' David, even jump over his own shadow. Their lovemaking is sweet and wonderful, with their affection so evident - even if neither can put it into words. There is a lot of character development for David in this second instalment of the series. He starts 'seeing the light', but he isn't quite there yet. Highly recommended.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Gerbera_Reads

    It's turning to be quite the journey for David and Murdo. This time it's not only about physical attraction but about mutual bond of trust and friendship that these two men establish in the course of the time they spend together when Murdo is back to Edinburgh. Two years have passed since they have seen each other last time. And their parting was not amicable by any means but since the first glance it's like no time has passed at all. They step into it like into an old pair of slippers - comforta It's turning to be quite the journey for David and Murdo. This time it's not only about physical attraction but about mutual bond of trust and friendship that these two men establish in the course of the time they spend together when Murdo is back to Edinburgh. Two years have passed since they have seen each other last time. And their parting was not amicable by any means but since the first glance it's like no time has passed at all. They step into it like into an old pair of slippers - comfortable and familiar yet not. David has changed as has Murdo. It's rather wonderful to watch those two interact both in public and private - every glance and every touch takes on new meaning. They finally share something more meaningful about themselves than superficial remarks - they share their past and how it shaped them. David is more open and understanding about himself and his needs and Murdo, well, he falls deeper and deeper until he can't stop himself from baring his soul to David. This is an amazing love story between two men in times when they dared not express their feelings out in the open. It seems that Murdo is a nurturer and provider by nature despite his attitude and the way he cares for David in the end just shows how much he was hiding himself from David and the world. Magnificently written, full of history and characters both old and new that bring something unique to the book adding to the intrigue of 1822 Scotland, to the story of two men who live with honor, responsibility, loyalty and fear to know what love might be like for them. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and highly recommend it!

  15. 5 out of 5

    Julio Genao

    this book made me rageface, but nobody i know hates this. so. your mileage will almost certainly etc. but me: cannot with the crappy characterization and molasses pacing. i don't need explosions or monkeyfucking to keep my interest, but for god's sake— abandoned at 30 percent. this book made me rageface, but nobody i know hates this. so. your mileage will almost certainly etc. but me: cannot with the crappy characterization and molasses pacing. i don't need explosions or monkeyfucking to keep my interest, but for god's sake— abandoned at 30 percent.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Elise ✘ a.k.a Ryder's Pet ✘

    ⋰⋱⋰⋱⋰⋱*Expected more*⋰⋱⋰⋱⋰⋱ Two years has gone since the previous book, and since lowborn and a lawyer David ‘Davy’ Lauriston (26) and Lord Murdoch ‘Murdo’ Balfour (in his thirties? 32? 33?) last saw each other. However, that doesn't mean the spark is lost; it's grown strong. With a little action (though not much) and a growing connection between the characters, the book was a alright read. Although it wasn't better than the first one, nor did it live up to my expectations. I struggled a litt ⋰⋱⋰⋱⋰⋱*Expected more*⋰⋱⋰⋱⋰⋱ Two years has gone since the previous book, and since lowborn and a lawyer David ‘Davy’ Lauriston (26) and Lord Murdoch ‘Murdo’ Balfour (in his thirties? 32? 33?) last saw each other. However, that doesn't mean the spark is lost; it's grown strong. With a little action (though not much) and a growing connection between the characters, the book was a alright read. Although it wasn't better than the first one, nor did it live up to my expectations. I struggled a little bit with feeling the connection between David and Murdo, and I also uncertain of how I felt about the change of Murdo's personality; gotten softer of sorts. I liked him being intimidating... On the the next book. “There wasn’t a bit of innocence or purity in him. He was sinful and cynical. Unapologetic. He cared nothing for the world. He just ate its fruits and roamed its wilds and didn’t need anyone.” Quick basic facts: Genre: - (Adult) Historical Romance (M/M) Series: - Series, Book Two. Love triangle? - (view spoiler)[No. (hide spoiler)] Cheating? - (view spoiler)[No. (hide spoiler)] HEA? - (view spoiler)[Cliffhanger of sorts. (hide spoiler)] Favorite character? - Murdoch ‘Murdo’ Balfour. Would I read more by this author/or of series? - Sure. Would I recommend this book/series? - Sure. Will I read this again in the future? - No. Rating - 2.5/3 stars.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Leslie

    **Reread 6/15/20-6/16/20. Review and rating stay the same. I’m still smitten. 🥰 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️.5/5 Heart Stealing Stars! 🔥🔥🔥/5 Heat 5/5 Sexual Tension and Pining! 😍 This series, David and Murdo (especially Murdo) has completely stolen my heart and enchanted me. I said in my review of book one how I wasn’t a big historical romance person but consider me more open to it now. IF, they are like this series at least. Wow. I’m glad all of the books are available because my instant gratification, binge happy sel **Reread 6/15/20-6/16/20. Review and rating stay the same. I’m still smitten. 🥰 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️.5/5 Heart Stealing Stars! 🔥🔥🔥/5 Heat 5/5 Sexual Tension and Pining! 😍 This series, David and Murdo (especially Murdo) has completely stolen my heart and enchanted me. I said in my review of book one how I wasn’t a big historical romance person but consider me more open to it now. IF, they are like this series at least. Wow. I’m glad all of the books are available because my instant gratification, binge happy self would not have liked waiting on books. When book one starts, TWO FRICKIN YEARS have passed since the events of book one. David and Murdo didn’t separate on the best of terms. And yet when Murdo returns to Edinburgh for the King’s visit and the two run into each other, it’s as if no time has passed. The sparks between them are so big I’m surprised they didn’t burn the building down! Murdo suggests to David that they keep each other company while he’s in town. David doesn’t think it’s a good idea. But he also can’t seem to say no. My heart honestly couldn’t handle this book. It was even better than book one. What I loved the most was that you would think David would be the more obviously smitten one. After all, Murdo is this fancy Lord; tall, dark and handsome, arrogant and surly. Yet David is the one who more obviously has Murdo under his spell. And even better, he doesn’t even seem to really know it! Don’t get me wrong, David is just as smitten. (Reluctantly) But he doesn’t fully realize how crazy and undone he’s made this powerful man. I LOVED it! Basically these two were a pair of walking, unrealized, reluctant, pining heart eyes. 😍 Like book one, this one was well written with a smooth plot. Also like the first one, this was a beautiful slow burn on both the physical and emotional sides. It was full of tiny, tender moments, clandestine touches and scorching sexual tension. “Beguiled,” had me turning pages and ignoring Christmas responsibilities. Which is why I’ll be baking cookies and wrapping presents all night. I regret nothing! Except not reading these books sooner.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Angela Bee Bee

    Could you resist this guy? Accurate down to the cockade, this story occurs during King George's first visit to Scotland. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Visit_of... Apparently this visit spurred the official kilt wearing national pride sort of thing. In between all of that, Balfour and David are flirting away and thinking naughty thoughts. They gaze and smile at each other in a very romantic seductive manner. The romance has a male female dynamic that is different and interesting. The discussion missing Could you resist this guy? Accurate down to the cockade, this story occurs during King George's first visit to Scotland. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Visit_of... Apparently this visit spurred the official kilt wearing national pride sort of thing. In between all of that, Balfour and David are flirting away and thinking naughty thoughts. They gaze and smile at each other in a very romantic seductive manner. The romance has a male female dynamic that is different and interesting. The discussion missing from the first book happens early in this book. David participates and Balfour expresses his desires and continues his seduction. "When can I see you again?" The sex also picks up frequency too, almost too much. The non-Balfour bits are still dry. The Balfour bits are juicy and the sweet melting of these two hearts is delicious. No idea why it's called Beguiled? Obsequious, overly obedient Burghers, wealthy citizen Bonhomie, friendly Uxorious, overly doting on the wife Nankeen, yellow pants Cockade, a bow on a hat or lapel.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Cadiva

    Chapter two with David and Murdo clips along at a faster pace This one is much quicker on plot narrative than the scene setting of the first book. There is also a much greater level of connection between our erstwhile heroes. Two years later, this centres around the true historical event of George IV's visit to Scotland at the behest of Sir Walter Scott, novelist and the starting point for the romanticism of the Highland way of life. I love it when a history novel uses real events to wrap its story Chapter two with David and Murdo clips along at a faster pace This one is much quicker on plot narrative than the scene setting of the first book. There is also a much greater level of connection between our erstwhile heroes. Two years later, this centres around the true historical event of George IV's visit to Scotland at the behest of Sir Walter Scott, novelist and the starting point for the romanticism of the Highland way of life. I love it when a history novel uses real events to wrap its story around and this one is filled with it. David and Murdo are thrown together once again but this time there is a much deeper connection being forged between them as the rights of married women become central to the political thriller nature of this series. I'm also hoping that the delightful Captain Sinclair is going to get his own book, I find him most intriguing.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Ele

    *4.5 stars* I shouldn't have waited so long to read this series. I know a lot of readers don't care for time jumps. I'm in the minority about this, but I love time jumps and even long seperation periods. When done right, it benefits the narrative immensely, it gives the characters (and the reader) a great sense of perspective and the MCs can fully realise their feelings. This is exactly what happened here. I absolutely loved the two year time jump. The Age of Enlightment is a favorite era to study *4.5 stars* I shouldn't have waited so long to read this series. I know a lot of readers don't care for time jumps. I'm in the minority about this, but I love time jumps and even long seperation periods. When done right, it benefits the narrative immensely, it gives the characters (and the reader) a great sense of perspective and the MCs can fully realise their feelings. This is exactly what happened here. I absolutely loved the two year time jump. The Age of Enlightment is a favorite era to study, and I find it so very fitting as a title here. David slowly breaks free of the chains of self-loathing and religion, and Murdo slowly starts to question the societal norms that confine him. On to the next one.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Elena

    My most common concern when I’m rereading a book is that I won’t find it as good as the first time. It’s already a win when that happens and it’s not often that I feel the need to rise the rating, but for the second time with this series, I’m adding half a star to my original rating. I loved every moment of this book and I can’t find a single thing I would want to be different. I reread my original review and I’m scratching my head and wondering what I wanted back then, when I complained about D My most common concern when I’m rereading a book is that I won’t find it as good as the first time. It’s already a win when that happens and it’s not often that I feel the need to rise the rating, but for the second time with this series, I’m adding half a star to my original rating. I loved every moment of this book and I can’t find a single thing I would want to be different. I reread my original review and I’m scratching my head and wondering what I wanted back then, when I complained about David and Murdo holding back. In my second read, I was so in love with the way their relationship progressed in this book that I really can’t think of what I was missing the first time. My original opinion about everything else still stands, from the changes in the characters to (view spoiler)[the domestic abuse storyline regarding Elizabeth (hide spoiler)] , so 5 stars it is. ------------------------------------------------ Original review in 2017: 4.5 stars Wow. Even better than the first. I loved the subtle but substantial shift in David’s mindset. His encounter with Murdo in Provoked really changed his perception of his “weakness” and I’m so glad to see he’s coming to accept that part of himself leaving behind the self-loathing. I also loved Murdo. He was still Murdo, but so much more tender and sweet in this book. I knew he had it in him and it was so good to read. :) He was so supportive and patient with David, so ready to put himself out there even when he was risking rejection in the worst way. I loved seeing his vulnerable side and I’m sure there’s more to come. The writing was still excellent and the plot kept me glued to the pages. (view spoiler)[Poor Elizabeth, I liked her character in Provoked and I was hoping to see her poor excuse of a husband used as a punching bag. I didn’t get my wish, for now, but there’s still time. (hide spoiler)] I loved everything, but I still took off half star because I’m greedy and I wanted something more between David and Murdo. They’ve come a long way, but I feel like they’re holding back a bit. While I understand David’s reservations and can imagine Murdo has some of his own, my romantic side isn’t completely pleased with them. I’m sure I’ll get my wish in the last book, though. I already started it and it’s good.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Isabel

    After reading this book, the first thing that I want to say is that May can't come fast enough! Not because this book ends with a cliffhanger, because it doesn't... But I'm craving for the exchange of a word between the MCs, and I can't wait to read that moment! This book is even better than the first one... it's amazing, captivating, romantic... I felt mesmerized by it! After some time apart, David and Murdo met again! David more mature, more sure of himself... and Murdo the same confident and st After reading this book, the first thing that I want to say is that May can't come fast enough! Not because this book ends with a cliffhanger, because it doesn't... But I'm craving for the exchange of a word between the MCs, and I can't wait to read that moment! This book is even better than the first one... it's amazing, captivating, romantic... I felt mesmerized by it! After some time apart, David and Murdo met again! David more mature, more sure of himself... and Murdo the same confident and strong man! The visit of the King to Scotland is the motto of this plot! Murdo comes with the King, but his main goal is to see David again! Their feelings are so intense and true, that two years apart brings their relationship to a new level! That moment is so beautiful, so tender and full of love! Memorable! And then there is that perfect ending... can they be more in love??? The plot is amazing and so is the writing! This are the first books that I read of Joanna Chambers, and I'm captivated by her style and her characters! Come on May, be here fast, please! Have I said before that the plot is in Scotland? And that there is an event where men are dressed in kilts? Or have I said that I love to see men in kilt?

  23. 4 out of 5

    CrabbyPatty

    Life was easier sometimes when you didn’t know what you were missing. It has been two years since Lord Balfour and David parted ways in London. It's 1822 and all of Edinburgh is preparing for King George's visit to Scotland - the first in almost 200 years - and Sir Walter Scott (of Ivanhoe and Rob Roy fame) has organized an extravagant bit of theater for the visit decreeing all citizen dress in specific colors, with kilts or other authentic Highland dress required for the Grand Ball. As a re Life was easier sometimes when you didn’t know what you were missing. It has been two years since Lord Balfour and David parted ways in London. It's 1822 and all of Edinburgh is preparing for King George's visit to Scotland - the first in almost 200 years - and Sir Walter Scott (of Ivanhoe and Rob Roy fame) has organized an extravagant bit of theater for the visit decreeing all citizen dress in specific colors, with kilts or other authentic Highland dress required for the Grand Ball. As a result, David finds himself hurrying to an appointment with a tailor, where he meets Murdo Balfour. Murdo regrets how they parted and tells David he wants to see him again. David, for his part, feels more settled, more comfortable with his attraction to Murdo, "as though all the jumbled parts of himself had been set right overnight." Their attraction for one another is as fiery and passionate as before, but now there's a new element: And what pleasure. These kisses. The intimacy of them. The rough of Murdo’s chin scraping his own, the give of his lips. His tongue, teasing the corner of David’s mouth and the feel of his smile—lips curving up against David’s. David opened his eyes at that smile, just in time to see Murdo’s own lashes flutter open. And, the shock, the shock and the pleasure of meeting a gaze that expressed so perfectly what David felt at this moment: wonder, pleasure…unexpected affection.Chambers balances each character's idea of marriage and the amount of trust and intimacy in a relationship, and that fuels the action of the story. Because he cannot commit his heart to a woman, David has decided to never marry, while Murdo is still planning to "eventually marry, while continuing to enjoy male lovers at his whim." Elizabeth Chambers has wed in haste to a horrid man who according to the law owns her like property. I love the richness of the character development in Beguiled, the way David and Murdo's relationship has become something deeper and more meaningful to each man, and because I'm a total history geek, I love Chambers' intelligent take on the complex issues affecting England and Scotland at the time of the Late Enlightenment period. Beguiled isn't a complete cliffhanger, but after the plot's quick-paced resolution, we are left with the threads of a possible future for David and Murdo, as well as Elizabeth, and I cannot wait to begin Enlightened. I highly recommend this book - 5 stars! July 2018: Review revised just to note that I recently listened to the audiobook. Hamish McKinlay is the narrator of "Beguiled," as he was of "Provoked," and he is superlative, with an authentic Scottish accent and a lyrical quality to his voice that is so, so lovely to listen to. Hamish McKinlay does a great job and his narration really elevates the story. 5+ stars and I highly recommend the audiobook! I received an ARC from the author in exchange for an honest review. Review also posted at Gay Book Reviews - check it out!

  24. 5 out of 5

    Heather C

    How many of you were screaming about the ending of Provoked??? Well, if you weren't screaming, then that means you probably didn't read it...and you didn't read because you either hadn't realized how good it was, or you already knew that it ended with neither a HEA nor a HFN and were too afraid to be left hanging. I, honestly, LOVED Provoked, even gave it an easy 5 stars. But I am happy to say that I LOVED Beguiled EVEN MORE!! I've been fretting about what to write in this review for several week How many of you were screaming about the ending of Provoked??? Well, if you weren't screaming, then that means you probably didn't read it...and you didn't read because you either hadn't realized how good it was, or you already knew that it ended with neither a HEA nor a HFN and were too afraid to be left hanging. I, honestly, LOVED Provoked, even gave it an easy 5 stars. But I am happy to say that I LOVED Beguiled EVEN MORE!! I've been fretting about what to write in this review for several weeks now and, honestly, I'm not any closer to figuring out what to say since I finished reading the book. It's just THAT freakin' good! So, please forgive me in advance for any random babble. Its two years later, and David Lauriston has been moving up in the world: he has a fancier bachelor pad, a succeeding career with lots of room for growth, and salacious memories of his illicit couplings with the one and only Lord Murdo Balfour. The King is in town for a visit, and Murdo decides its the perfect excuse to seduce David...again... Is it possible for them to actually have a future together? What makes this 5 star rating BIGGER than the one for Provoked: ♥ Romance, Romance, Romance...this book has it times 10! Oh goodness, Murdo and David make my heart flutter, among other things. ♥ Intense chemistry...Yep, these guys still have it! While it isn't exactly "kinky", it is quite sufficiently "naughty" ♥ There is a kilt...then there is a powerful discussion about the meaning and pride behind wearing a kilt. Hmm, very thought provoking...but still sexy. ♥ More suspense...there is no real mystery this time, but the big conflict involves characters we already know and love from Provoked ♥ More character dimensions...I was biting my nails with worry for so many of the characters. It was like a knew them and ached for them. Not just David and Murdo, but other characters too, especially Elizabeth. ♥ More political statements realistic to the time period...damn, its so obvious this author knows what she is writing. So freakin' realistic! ♥ The ending!...while its not a HEA, it is most certainly a HFN. It was something I totally DID NOT see happening. This is the second book in the Enlightenment Trilogy...I want the conclusion now, dammit! Recommended over and over times a thousand and one...

  25. 5 out of 5

    Chris

    Ahhh so David has finally come to understand he is not an abomination and that what he feels for Murdo is certainly something new. After missing each other for two years they are reunited via the pomp and pageantry of the Kings visit. They find they are more desperate for each other and their romance, albeit fleeting and very cloak & dagger, starts to heat up. I love David’s loyalty to his friends and his protection of Elizabeth cost him his health badly ... but in saying that he will now spend Ahhh so David has finally come to understand he is not an abomination and that what he feels for Murdo is certainly something new. After missing each other for two years they are reunited via the pomp and pageantry of the Kings visit. They find they are more desperate for each other and their romance, albeit fleeting and very cloak & dagger, starts to heat up. I love David’s loyalty to his friends and his protection of Elizabeth cost him his health badly ... but in saying that he will now spend 3 months with Murdo in his Country Estate as he recuperates. Yippee here comes book 3

  26. 5 out of 5

    Optimist ♰King's Wench♰

    Heart eyes. Nuthin' but heart eyes do I see. Review up on the blog or see Enlightened review. Heart eyes. Nuthin' but heart eyes do I see. Review up on the blog or see Enlightened review.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Claudie ☾

    This was every bit as good as the prequel! I LOVE this series! 😍 Murdo’s personality did a one-eighty here — I guess two years can change a man, but it was still a little surprising. I really liked seeing his softer side, though, and he still remains my favorite character in this series. The changes in David were subtler, but just as significant. It’s great that he’s finally beginning to accept himself. Oh my goodness, I adore these two together! And that ending was so sweet, too — or should I say This was every bit as good as the prequel! I LOVE this series! 😍 Murdo’s personality did a one-eighty here — I guess two years can change a man, but it was still a little surprising. I really liked seeing his softer side, though, and he still remains my favorite character in this series. The changes in David were subtler, but just as significant. It’s great that he’s finally beginning to accept himself. Oh my goodness, I adore these two together! And that ending was so sweet, too — or should I say bittersweet, considering what happened a couple of pages earlier… I hope everything works out in the next book!

  28. 5 out of 5

    Kaje Harper

    I enjoyed the first book in this series, Provoked, a lot, even though the romance barely gets off the ground floor in that book. Now David, a solicitor in 1822 Scotland, has pretty much gotten over his depression at finding and then being left by a man he could care about and was willing to let his true nature out for. He always knew it was just a temporary thing, and at this point has not seen Murdo for two years. He's working, taking the burden off his ailing mentor's shoulders, and building h I enjoyed the first book in this series, Provoked, a lot, even though the romance barely gets off the ground floor in that book. Now David, a solicitor in 1822 Scotland, has pretty much gotten over his depression at finding and then being left by a man he could care about and was willing to let his true nature out for. He always knew it was just a temporary thing, and at this point has not seen Murdo for two years. He's working, taking the burden off his ailing mentor's shoulders, and building his career, when the visit of King George brings Lord Murdo Balfour along in its wake. It also brings Ewan, the radical who nearly wrecked David the first time around, now a journalist. And he encounters the girl he disappointed by not proposing, now married to a man she seems afraid of. There is a lot on David's plate, and he's reluctant to get involved with Murdo again, when it will just be another fleeting glimpse of something he so badly wants. He tries to react honorably and ethically, and compassionately, to everyone while maintaining his pride, both personal and national. He asks more of himself than anyone else will. But he is unable to resist Murdo's appeals. Just as he is unable to turn away others who ask for his help. David is in deep, in more than one way, and his honor, his desire and compassion push him into actions that may have very serious consequences. The period feel of these books is excellent. The issues of women's complete lack of rights, the suffering of tenants and the poor, the inequities of the class system, all inform the story appropriately for the times. David is a wonderful character, in his upright honesty, which he must somehow bend to the needs at hand. Murdo is a fine foil for him, the dissolute nobleman who has fallen for a good man and doesn't quite know what to do about that. This story ends in a HFN, more satisfying than the first, although I will pounce on the third book the minute it comes out.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Karen

    “I don’t know what this thing between us is,” Murdo said, and he sounded genuinely bewildered. “But I can’t give it up. I can’t give you up.” Even better! The relationship between these two is simply addictive. Great writing and character building. On to Enlightenment. “I don’t know what this thing between us is,” Murdo said, and he sounded genuinely bewildered. “But I can’t give it up. I can’t give you up.” Even better! The relationship between these two is simply addictive. Great writing and character building. On to Enlightenment.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Rosa

    I liked this continuation of Murdo and David story. I was anxious thinking Euan could make trouble for David, but in the end, when trouble came, it was from other side. I liked the changes Murdo has provoked in David, but, more even because they were a surprise, the changes we see in Murdo. We see him through David unreliable eyes, but, it's clear his encounter with David has changed him more than we could expect. I couldn't stop reading once I reached the end, I'm off to see how their story con I liked this continuation of Murdo and David story. I was anxious thinking Euan could make trouble for David, but in the end, when trouble came, it was from other side. I liked the changes Murdo has provoked in David, but, more even because they were a surprise, the changes we see in Murdo. We see him through David unreliable eyes, but, it's clear his encounter with David has changed him more than we could expect. I couldn't stop reading once I reached the end, I'm off to see how their story concludes.

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