Earl Hathbury's Vessel by S. Rodman

Earl Hathbury's Vessel was a bit of a surprise and part of a larger, interconnected world.

From the blurb:

After years of cruelty, how do you learn to trust? To love?

It may be 2022, but the modern world has done nothing to protect me.

I live in the world of the British nobility, a secret society of magic, mages and vessels.

There are strict rules and customs and no freedom at all.

My name is Charlie, but to society, I’m just a vessel. A person who grows and absorbs magic within them, but cannot wield it.

As tradition dictates, on my eighteenth birthday, I was given to a mage. From that day onwards, every seven days for four long years, Earl Rathbone took my body to take my magic.

Earl Rathbone was a cruel and harsh master. But it was ‘the done thing’ and society turned a blind eye to my mistreatment.

Until the earl’s son finally intervened and whisked me away. Sending me to Archie. The Earl of Hathbury.

Archie is kind and sweet. The man loves books nearly as much as I do. He is nothing like Earl Rathbone.

Yet, giving Archie my body and my magic is daunting. But it is my duty and a necessity. As a vessel, I need a mage to regularly empty me or I could die.

To my great relief, Archie is understanding and gentle, and it’s not long before I start to fall for him. Finding my duty more of a pleasure.

Archie seems to enjoy our time together more than is proper, and I am hopeful.

But can Archie be trusted? Is he really safe? Will I ever be truly free?

Jacquie's Review:

I'd rate this 4.5 because of the lack of communication between the pair at one point.

Compared to the previous book, Earl Hathbury's Vessel was actually very sweet. There's still steam in there, it's natural because of the magic system, but it's toned down because of how Charlie has been treated.

There's an almost SA scene so please be aware of this. There's also allusions to previous abuse and Charlie is punished on page. None of these are gratuitous and factor into the plot.

Archie and Charlie were very likeable and I enjoyed cameos from Fen and Zander. The introduction to book 3's mc was nicely done, making me curious about him. There's a sneak peek into his book and it helps tie this series into the greater world the author is building where the books are lightly connected.

Rating: 4.5 Stars

Earl Hathbury's Vessel is currently available as an e-book, hardcover and paperback and can be read as part of your Kindle Unlimited Subscription


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