Table of Contents

Book Info

Author:
Series:

Oliver & Jack

Series Type:
Interlinked
Number In Series:
4
Publisher:
Blue Rain Press
Published:
19 July 2022
Book Type
Pages:
413
Genre's
Heat Level

Synopsis

After escaping Axminster Workhouse, Oliver and Jack travel by coach to visit Jack’s family, and then to Chertsey, to visit Oliver’s. But families can be cruel, and the lads’ quest for connection leads to disappointment.

Exploring taverns and river bends along the way, Oliver desires a home for both him and Jack. However Jack knows Oliver is the only home he’ll ever need.

When the pressures of propriety and rigid social rules threaten to divide them, and even the slightest act of affection between them could get them arrested, can their love endure?

A gay, m/m Victorian-era romance with grumpy/sunshine, hurt/comfort, opposites attract, emotional scars, and pure, sweet love. A little sweet, a little steamy, with a guaranteed

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Review

Reviewed By: Josh Dale

5/5

Once again Oliver and Jack are subjected to the brutal realities of the Draconian class divides in England.

After escaping the workhouse in Axminister, I thought these two young men might have an easier time in book 4.  I mean they have been to hell and back.   But life for they two young men, though less brutal, emotionally they are torn to shreds.

They first try and connect to Jack’s mother, but it is obvious that Jack is not welcome.  Then the head north to try and connect with Oliver’s Aunt and Uncle. And this is where the real emotional pain hit me the hardest.  For poor Oliver has yearned to reconnect with his family, it seems that his aunt at least only tolerates Jack, and they are determined to separate the two young men.

Though their bond and love are stronger and when Oliver realises that he could not live apart from Jack.  They head back to London.

You know Jackie has managed to fill the story world with a vibrant detail.  I felt like I was walking along the riverside of the river Avon and riding the rickety coaches across country.  She has built a truly amazing story world that is accurate and authentic to the time, whether it is the beautiful English countryside or the dirty and smoggy streets of London.

I just love Oliver and Jack, both want to make the other happy, and care for each other.  I also like the tussle they play, in being the one that is the carer (for want of a better word).  The banter between them is a strong as ever. Again, the author has sprinkled her magic on their conversations, with Oliver’s shy and properness and Jacks cheeky, rough, and ready characters complementing each other.  I did notice Oliver is a little less naive and prudish, as you would expect after the journey together.

Book four is as strong as the previous books, and I am already starting to feel the doom of only having two books in the series left to read.  I always get sad when I end a really good series, but I think I will especially miss Oliver and Jack.

I wonder if I can beg and plead Jackie to write more books of Oliver and Jackie lol.

 

Excerpt

Jack felt the back of his neck relax, now that he was truly alone with Nolly, and the events of the day had come to a halt. Though while normally he would have fallen asleep, he found his fingers fiddling with the buttons on Nolly’s shirt, and shifted his legs to hook with Nolly’s.

The air in the room was too close, and he wanted the window to be open, in spite of the fact that it was so windy. But this was still far better than being stuck out of doors during a storm; he was well able to undergo the slight hardship of not enough fresh air.

“Is there aught amiss, Jack?” asked Nolly who, to Jack’s gratitude, was petting him along his shoulder, slowly and softly.

“’Tis only that it’s stuffy,” said Jack. “It’s nothin’ I regard.”

“Then I shall open the window.”

This meant Jack had to let go of Nolly, who went up on his knees, his shirt pulled up to his thighs midway, the bed creaking as he fiddled with the latch.

As Jack looked up, the side seam of Nolly’s shirt, which already went up a ways, was now fairly high as Nolly reached, exposing the curve of his naked backside. Without thinking, Jack lifted his hand and, with the backs of his fingers, traced the line just above the hollow below Nolly’s hip.

Startled, Nolly’s skin jumped, and he looked down. But instead of pushing Jack’s hand away, he laid his palm on top of Jack’s hand, pressing it close and still.

“Wait a moment,” Nolly said and, as he opened the window and propped it on either side with their top hats, Jack left his hand as he had been bidden, though he rippled his fingers against Nolly’s skin. Not with impatience, just to let Nolly know he was there.

When at last the window was set open, and a waft of fresh air entered the room, Jack sighed.

“Is that better, Jack?”

Jack nodded, not wanting to say anything lest he disturb the sight of Nolly high on his knees in the bed, his upper thighs pretty well naked to the world, and Nolly seeming not in the least bothered by it.

Oh, how times had changed, because whereas before, Nolly would have been hustling to get under the covers lest Jack see him in the altogether, now he was letting Jack look, encouraging him, even. He even waited till Jack tipped up his chin before laying down again to plant a quick kiss on Jack’s cheek. He also petted Jack’s belly over his shirt, and pulled the bedclothes up on the other side, lest Jack get a chill.

“Shall I distract you?” asked Nolly.

“What d’you mean?” asked Jack.

He honestly didn’t know, for it was a different type of question than the sort Nolly usually asked. Turning his head on the pillow that he was borrowing, though only for the moment, he watched as Nolly looked at him, tracing Jack’s face with his eyes. And thought again how glad he was to be alone at last with his dearest boy.

“I meant—”

Instead of finishing the sentence, Nolly sat up, his gold-dark hair tousled about his head. His eyes were lowered, though he looked up at Jack through his lashes as he pushed the bedclothes down Jack’s legs and rested his hand on Jack’s thigh.

“Might I—?”

Nolly might not ever be able to say the words that Jack could, for the direct way was not the way Nolly went about things, being from those proper sort of people who danced around the subject, as Jack had seen today. But Jack could not bear to force him to say it; that would come with time, perhaps, or not at all.

But what did it matter, if Nolly was willing and looked at him the way he was looking now, with his eyes so dark, so blue, and deep, as some place where guarded treasure might be? And he was Jack’s; he belonged to Jack now as ever he did, and he was asking. Waiting.

“To be sure—” said Jack, starting off in a joking tone, but then he stopped and swallowed the thickness in his throat. It was not right to tease at a moment like this. Later perhaps, but not now.

“Yes, please,” Jack said, using his best manners. “Whatever you wish, whatever you want, an’ I shall be as still as an oak tree beneath your ministrations.”

“Oh, I should hope not,” said Nolly with a little curl to his lips.

This gesture, as Jack was coming to know, meant that Nolly felt comfortable enough and, indeed, safe enough, to take the lead and give pleasure rather than simply wait to receive it. Which was not his fault, as Jack well knew, because Nolly had had no experience with touching and fucking and holding, not from anybody. And that, truth be told, was Jack’s secret pleasure. That he had been Nolly’s first.

“G’on, then,” said Jack. “You can’t break me.”

“I shouldn’t want to,” said Nolly, low, his voice rumbling in his chest in a way that had Jack’s skin sensitive before Nolly had hardly touched him at all.

With the gentlest of hands, so warm, Nolly pushed Jack’s shirt up to his waist and straddled Jack’s thigh, but only the one thigh.

Nolly somehow knew, more-so now after Axminster, that Jack did not like to be held down, though what Nolly made of this in his own head Jack did not know. Only that Nolly’s thighs were soft around his, and that Nolly’s cock, blood-warm, draped in a lush way along Jack’s skin. That Nolly’s leg hairs tickled his. That Nolly was warm and soft and slow as he took Jack’s cock in his hand and petted it.

Nolly didn’t jump right into the motion, but eased into it. His palm curled around Jack’s cock, stroking slowly in a way that sent shivers through Jack’s belly.

Tender, small sparks shot up his spine and seemed to predict that more would be coming, but slowly. Ever so slowly, the way Nolly was going, stroking up and down Jack’s cock, his hands strong, the palm curling around, and just barely moving. Making Jack warm, and warmer still, and hard, in Nolly’s hand. Who, as he knelt over Jack’s thigh, never settled his weight down fully, as if Jack might be crushed beneath him, and that wouldn’t do.

Finally, Nolly leaned forward, using his free hand to brace himself over Jack. Nolly’s shirt fanned out so it blocked Jack’s view of what Nolly was doing, so Jack tipped his head back and closed his eyes and sighed.

He didn’t need to see, though he had seen it before and could imagine it now, what Nolly’s mouth was doing. Jack felt the heat on the head of his cock and the moisture from Nolly’s open-mouthed kiss, which he placed all along Jack’s length, which was growing very hard now, even as Nolly’s touches were so light.

Nolly’s hair against Jack’s bare belly tickled him and made his skin jump, and then jump again as Nolly took Jack fully into his mouth, the sigh of his breath rushing down Jack’s cock as he licked and suckled. Slowly Nolly did this, over and over, going up and down with his mouth with all the patience in the world, as if this was all there was and ever would be.

All at once, deep in Jack’s belly, something bloomed, bright like a spark, and his whole body tightened up. He had no time to warn Nolly, or even a thought to think it with. His head tipped back as if he were drowning and, open-mouthed, he moaned, his back arching as he felt the pulse between his legs, the tightness that became something else, something bright and alive and consuming as he spent himself into Nolly’s mouth.

He could feel, from a distance, Nolly swallowing, his hands gentle, his mouth still on Jack, but tenderly now. Nolly’s hand was on his belly, petting it as the sweat sprang up along the back of Jack’s neck, between his legs, sparkling like diamonds in the dark.

And still Nolly did not let go. Though his weight shifted on the mattress, and Jack thought Nolly was sitting back to admire his handiwork, he stayed between Jack’s legs. One of Nolly’s legs was flung over Jack’s thigh in the most casual of ways, Nolly’s hands on Jack’s sated cock, fingers curling in Jack’s private hair.

As Jack squinted his eyes open, Nolly was using the back of his sleeve to wipe his mouth, and seemed to be nodding, as if, having had a private word with himself, was very satisfied with the contents of the conversation.

“Better now?” asked Nolly, still in that low voice.

He pulled Jack’s shirt into alignment and was starting to draw up the bedclothes around Jack. Jack knew Nolly would soon slip into bed beside him to become Jack’s pillow, but for the moment he was making sure that all was well and, without words, was asking if there was aught else that Jack required.

“Yes,” said Jack.

It was all he could manage, lest his voice break over the words and reveal to Nolly how very moved he was. Or, perhaps, it was better to let the words come and break and tumble over themselves so Nolly would know.

“Yes,” he said again. He licked his lips and reached up to pull Nolly to him so Nolly was now laying warm along all of Jack’s length so Jack could turn his head and whisper into Nolly’s ear, wracked words and all. “Yes, Nolly, better, so much better, with you here, always, when you’re w’me.”

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Writing for love, working towards that happy ever after.

Biography

Jackie North has been writing stories since grade school and spent years absorbing the mainstream romances that she found at her local grocery store. Her dream was to someday leave her corporate day job behind and travel the world. She also wanted to put her English degree to good use and write romance novels, because for years she’s had a never-ending movie of made-up love stories in her head that simply wouldn’t leave her alone.

As fate would have it, she discovered m/m romance and decided that men falling in love with other men was exactly what she wanted to write books about. In this dazzling new world, she turned her grocery-store romance ideas around and is now putting them to paper as fast as her fingers can type. She creates characters who are a bit flawed and broken, who find themselves on the edge of society, and maybe a few who are a little bit lost, but who all deserve a happily ever after. (And she makes sure they get it!)

She likes long walks on the beach, the smell of lavender and rainstorms, and enjoys sleeping in on snowy mornings. She is especially fond of pizza and beer and, when time allows, long road trips with soda fountain drinks and rock and roll music. In her heart, there is peace to be found everywhere, but since in the real world this isn’t always true, Jackie writes for love.

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