Review: Christina Pilz – Oliver & Jack: In London Towne (Oliver & Jack, #6)


Author: Christina Pilz
Reviewer: Natalie
Publisher: Blue Rain Press
Genre: MM

Rating: ★★★★½ 

Summary: In the noisy, crowded streets of London, where shadows hold secrets often too horrible to describe, an orphan and his beloved pickpocket attempt to rebuild their shattered peace. This is the love story of Oliver Twist and the Artful Dodger.

As Jack recovers from the sexual assault at Chalenheim’s hands, he finds that he is unable to express his love for Oliver with any intimacy. Oliver, meanwhile, rescues Finley from Axminster Workhouse, and returns to London full of love for Jack and the desire to do whatever is necessary to help Jack recover his dignity and his passion.

Chalenheim is still on the loose in London, waiting for another chance at Jack and Finley, which soon comes. Though they escape with barely a scratch, Oliver vows to rid the world of the man who would dare lay hands upon his beloved Jack.

In London Towne is the sixth and final book in Christina E. Pilz’s Oliver & Jack gay historical romance series. If you enjoy stories about forbidden love battling against the dark forces that threaten to tear them apart, then you’ll enjoy this tale, so pick up a copy today!

Review: I’m kind of sad that the series has ended but this story did draw it to a close perfectly. Once again, I was plunged into this remarkable depiction of England, and London, with its varied denizens, from the destitute to the prosperous. As the story opens, Jack and Oliver’s travails aren’t over. Oliver travels to Axminster to get Finley and their few days apart are revelatory, both recognizing how great their need for each other is, how well they complement each other and the balance they’ve achieved.. When Oliver returns with Finley, they find that Chelenheim is still in London and events take a very dark turn.

I was in complete suspense for most of the first half, when Oliver and Jack face some of their greatest terrors. It does get a bit gruesome too, but I was rather happy with the highly appropriate retribution. The previous book, On the Isle of Dogs, gave hints of what the future might hold for Oliver and Jack, through Oliver’s serendipitous encounter with Mr. Yeslevitz. Oliver has also reached out to mend some of the bridges he burned since running from his apprenticeship and across England with Jack. Threads from the series are drawn together through the last chapters. Most of all, Jack and Oliver reflect upon each other and the knowledge they’ve gained facing all the adversity they’ve encountered. Becoming intimate again was a slow process but sex was never the most important part of their relationship.

It’s been an epic romance and adventure story from start to finish. I was quite hesitant when beginning Ms. Pilz first installment, wondering just how a literary classic could be translated into a continuing gay romance. Well, it was done in stellar fashion, an homage to Charles Dickens in every word. I’m quite awed by the level of dedication that must have been involved in crafting this series. Highly, highly recommended reading for anyone who appreciates a great historical romance.

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