When new residents come to the Grange, Mathias applies for a job at the house and is hired on at the housekeeper’s request for the Christmas season. He finds there a temptation of the body and heart in the form of the house’s master, one that he is ill-equipped to handle or resist … not that he has the desire to do so....
|Title||:||A Gift of Ash and Frost|
|Number of Pages||:||50 Pages|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
A Gift of Ash and Frost Reviews
3.5I'm not a big fan of historicals, but every now and then I take a chance. This was another time I'm glad I did.I loved this little Christmas short.Mathias had my heart captured from the first. A sweet and gentle soul that had known little of goodness or kindness.Never got to know Edward as much as I would of liked, but the romance was sweet.The climatic ending added that little bite to an otherwise sweet and simple story.
This was one of the Advent Calendar stories from Dreamspinner Press, a new story each day, and all set around the winter holiday season. It’s set a few years after 1812, approximately.I found myself a little confused, as the author weaves a little too much into the first few pages, Mathias is a bastard but he has a recently deceased father, so it appears his parents weren’t married. His mother is a whore, but it’s unclear what role his father played there.There’s inconsistencies–there’s a small staff for the house, we are told, but then we are told that Mathias gets a room to himself because the staff bedrooms are all full up.It does improve, and once Mathias starts working in the house I found myself reading more fluidly without being jolted, but I’m afraid the characters never really appealed to me, and I wasn’t touched by Mathias’ ‘tragic’ past because he did tend to whine about it. He’s a big strong lad and his mother is whoring to support the family. I lost my affection for him early on.The romance element is somewhat sidelined as the author flicks back to more description of the house and tasks than are actually needed. This approach would work better within a full-sized novel, but with a book of 40 or so pages, there needs to be more than two short meetings to convince me of attraction and love on both sides. I think that’s part of the problem, that the premise that is carefully layered, and the subplots put in place as the book progresses are larger than this–a short story–can cope with, and even at the end I couldn’t believe in the happy ending, as Edward–Mathias’ love interest–didn’t really show that much interest before the last few pages.Sad to say, that I have to add that it’s not at all well edited. I wanted to sprinkle comma dust over the book as a whole. Several of the run on sentences were almost impossible to decipher due to this lack, missing words confuse further and tenses change without need. It’s a shame, because what is there isn’t that bad, the ideas are good, if ambitious for the size of the book, and the prose could have really sparkled if the editor had done their job
My only complaint, it could have done with being a chapter longer. (view spoiler)[ I would have liked to have seen the immediate aftermath of the fire rather than been told about it. Also, those first fleeting steps confirming the relationship would have been interesting to see. (hide spoiler)] And maybe a few more references to date the period the story was set, unable to dredge up knowledge of the battle referred to I had to break off reading to use my Google-Fu.
This is one of the best historical gay romance I read lately, my only regret is that it's too short and left me with the desire to read more.The setting is some years after the1812, since the only historical details I had to identify the era is the Battle of Salamanca. An old country mansion was abandoned after his last owner died during the war; years later two gentlemen arrive to re-open the mansion and with them arrives also a lot of work for the nearby village, which was slowly dying since it was mostly the mansion's owners that provided it with all type of job. Mathias is the bastard son of the village's whore; his only skill is to be way stronger than all the other men around, but Mathias is also a quite and almost shy man; he never speaks if not asked and he is always ready to hard work. Mathias suffers the jokes of the villagers, but he never reacts, and is quite behavior gains him some favors from some people.When at the main house is needed a strong man to help the housekeeper to prepare the mansion for the Christmas two weeks party, Mathias is called. To Mathias doesn't matter what is murmured around the village about the abominations that happen inside the house, he wants only an honest work for the winter. But he is soon captivated by the steward of the house, Mr. Mason, a man who seems to be the master of himself and not a paid worker of two gentlemen. And then strange whispers are on the mouth of all the maids in the house, that are more than happy to work at the mansion, since, they said, they are more safe here than at home...As I said the story is really short, 50 pages, but it has a very well developed plot, and Mathias is a well-round character; on the other hand Mr. Mason and the two gentlemen are only hinted, and I would really glad to read more, on how they arrive to live in a isolated country house, even if it's obviously conceivable.There is a nice aspect in the book: sex is a so common activity in Mathias' life, with his mother's work, that he is not afraid of it, in every form it happens. And so it's not the sex that fascinates Mathias, but the intimacy: seeing a full naked body, stealing a gentle caress, smiling for an hidden secret that only lovers know... these are the things that Mathias doesn't know, and that he is drawn to discover. And so there is not explicit or detailed sex in this book, but more a sense of mystery and unknown, so strange for a man who has seen too much in his life.http://elisa-rolle.livejournal.com/45...
Mathias Oakes is working at the inn and alehouse when he overhears news that a strong man is needed to help at the Grange house with the preparations for a "Christmastide celebration". As his mother is still ill from having another child, a result of working as a whore, Mathias is responsible for caring for his six brothers and sister and the extra money would definitely help. Edward Mason is the head of the household and when he touches Mathias to evaluate his suitability for the job, something stirs within Mathias. He works hard at his new job and ends up discovering more details about the gentlemen of the house, as well as Edward. This is the second story from Chrissy as part of the advent calendar ~ this is quite different from the first story and is just as enjoyable. This is an intense story of a man who has been dealt a difficult hand with his life, more so than you can possibly imagine from the start of the story. As the story progresses, we learn more about Mathias as he discovers things about himself. I love the style this story is written in ~ it pulls you right into the overall setting of the story. The focus is on Mathias but there are numerous secondary characters that enrich the overall atmosphere of the house and provide interesting interactions with Mathias. The story's fast pacing drives toward the exceptionally poignant ending. This is the type of story that I really do feel I need to read numerous times in order to fully digest and appreciate all of it's intricacies and nuances ~ something that I personally love in a story. I really enjoy when each reading can reveal a bit more about the charcters and the underlying design of the story. It is a beautifully written and moving story that I greatly enjoyed and can't wait to read again.http://emily83176.livejournal.com/405...
Mathias starts working at the grange for mr mason , he started seeing him in a different light. Plus there were things going on which were clear and not , I just didn't no where it was heading. Seems like the it was starting to get some whee but then cut short.
This was a promising story that just was cut off too short. Enough to catch interest, but not enough to satisfy.
Another short little Christmas story!