Henry Merrill escaped the abusive family from his childhood and has built a life as the kindhearted handyman for the small town of Ashford in the 1880’s. Henry has every intention of living his life alone, serving the town he considers home. But an angel named Cory-Elle has other plans for Henry. With a soul that needs to be brought to earth, Cory-Elle gives Henry the opportunity to raise the family he never imagined he would have.
Dr. Lawrence Turner has a bad reputation in Ashford for attending to poor patients who cannot pay him and for being the only physician the town has ever seen make house calls to the local brothel. So when a young man claiming an angel has made him pregnant arrives in his office, Dr. Turner is not surprised. Despite his disbelief, Lawrence has few things to lose in tending to Henry—though Lawrence never counted on his heart being one of those things.
With the help of the doctor’s assistant Ben Lockhart and a saloon woman named Lily Mae Pepperidge, Henry and Lawrence must challenge everything they thought they knew about faith and family.
Together they encounter pain, joy, sorrow, and pleasure. But among it all, they discover love.
Standalone. HEA. Mpreg (Male Pregnancy) is a primary theme.
Rating: 5 wonderfully satisfying cups
Historical romance, especially with mpreg, isn't my usual read. Adding the social judgments of the past isn't an easy thing to get around. Society and families/friends can be judgy enough in contemporary times. I wasn't certain how it would work but I was interested to find out.
Henry is a good, kind, hardworking man. He's had a hard life: abusive parents, and later his only two friends dropped out of his life. Henry is lonely and craving love and a family. An injury allows a meeting with an angel and with Henry's consent, he is pregnant.
Lawrence is an oddity in the small town. He's a doctor without judgment, treating the working girls at the saloon despite what others say about him for it. He is smart and caring, driven to help people with knowledgeable treatments instead of superstitions.
Lawrence becomes Henry's only hope to help him through the pregnancy but first, he has to get the doctor to believe him. With a nudge from Henry's angel, Lawrence comes to believe.
Finch does this historical story right. There are tidbits of the judginess from the time period. Being gay, openly at least, was not an option. The romance is slow burn. I think the first kiss came in chapter seventeen. Not my usual but Finch did slow burn right. It didn't feel like it was taking forever for them to get together. It felt like a natural progression. They both have a bit of uncertainty considering the times, being attracted to the same sex is not acceptable. Lawrence has to deal with being Henry's doctor and the guilt of having inappropriate feelings for him. Their first kiss has a lot of chemistry and feeling behind it. The romance is sweet, don't expect explicit sex.
This story is a wonderful, sweet story of how two men fall in love and form an unconventional family. They find two people, Ben and Lily Mae, to share their home, their lives, and their child with who they can be completely truthful with and who love and accept them. I wasn't sure how Finch was going to make this story work, considering the time period it is set in, but she found a way. It reads realistic and natural (despite the additional of an angel and mpreg). I'm surprised by how much I enjoyed it. The story is different from what I usually read and like in a lot of ways but Finch hooked me. I loved the characters, Henry and Lawrence, Ben and Lily Mae. All were likable, believable in their characterization and unique. They felt like real people and that's the best compliment I can offer. I can imagine their lives in the future, their child growing up.
I 100% recommend taking a chance on this book. I loved it and I hope you do too.
Hi. My name is Jordan K Prince. I live and breathe MM fiction. I am particularly fond of mpreg; I can never get enough. I'm in the process of writing my first MM novel, mpreg, of course.