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Summary

Two years after his last encounter with cynical nobleman Lord Murdo Balfour, David Lauriston accidentally meets him again in the heart of Edinburgh. King George IV is about to make his first visit to Edinburgh, and Murdo has been sent North by his politician father to represent his aristocratic family at the celebrations. David and Murdo’s last parting was painful - and on Murdo’s part, bitter - but Murdo’s feelings seem to have mellowed in the intervening years. So much so that he suggests to David that they enjoy each other’s company during Murdo’s stay in the capital. Despite his initial reservations, David cannot put Murdo’s proposal from his mind, and soon find himself at Murdo’s door - and in his arms.

But other figures from David’s past are converging on the city, and as the pomp and ceremony of the King’s visit unfolds around them, David is drawn into a chain of events that will threaten everything: his career, his well-being, and the fragile bond that, despite David’s best intentions, is growing between him and Murdo.

©2013, 2017 Joanna Chambers (P)2017 Joanna Chambers

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Good follow on from Book 1

Time passes and the relationship deepens between the MCs in all ways. Direct follow on from Book 1. It seems we must now buy books by chapters as this whole series is clearly one story subdivided. The same intensity as Book 1.

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Engrossing Regency period romance!

Two years after farewelling David Lauriston, Lord Balfour returns to Edinburgh as part of the King’s retinue. When David seeks to help Elizabeth escape a brutal husband, he can’t foresee the danger ahead. I found this more compelling than the first book because David and Balfour’s romance was strongly counterweighted by the King’s visit and Elizabeth’s peril - all the stories were engrossing. Joanna Chambers has created two honourable and decent main characters in a realistic Regency period drama. 🎧 I can’t stress enough how much Hamish Mckinlay brings to these stories. His accents and turn of phrase breathes such vitality and realism into the characters and plot.

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Totally brilliant!

The story is gripping and the narration superb.
I love the ‘sense of place’ and the characters - particularly Murdo. ❤️

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Overall 5s are for life changers only, otherwise..

I'll not give any spoilers, but this book ties in neatly with the first and continues with its twist on tropes regarding male and female characters. The small one is soft and harsh, the big one is buttery and blustery. The women have a small part but enough depth to not feel like half assed literary tools.

Genuinely well written, beautiful narration (the rrrrroll of the rrrrrs!), and just really enjoyable. And frustrating because what's a little romance without some idiots trying to dance around courtship.

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Another winner from Joanna and Hamish....

I'm a latecomer to the Enlightenment party, but am SO glad I waited for the audios to appear. Hamish's enthusiasm for his script can be heard in his narration, he honestly gets carried away sometimes...and totally in a good way!! Davie and Murdo seem to come to an understanding in this instalment, both of them admitting that what is happening between them is too big to ignore [it's called L-O-V-E you two!!]. Have already downloaded Enlightened, which came out on 1st December. What will I do when that's finished?? 😓

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  • KD
  • 12-11-18

Amazing narrator and story

Hamish Mckinlay is so expressive—one of my very favourite narrators I’ve listened to. I adore this series. It’s the perfect mix of compelling story, characters, and romance. The emotional slow burn between David and Murdo is a delight. The sex scenes are so evocative and full of feeling, which makes them all the more erotic. The scene in this book in front of the fireplace is gorgeous. Brilliant series!

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  • AAHickman
  • 20-12-17

I adore this series, I adore it in audio even more

OMG, all the melty, gooey, yumminess. Okay, there's way more to this book, but I just adore how they are starting to admit to themselves how much they mean to each other.
I love all the details about life in this time, this is why I always say I'd go back in time if time travel was possible, although I'd likely be horrified by the difficulty of life then, I'd love the chance to experience it.
Plus I love the way she wove all the inequalities that people faced into the story without it being a sledgehammer (this is seldom done well in any story, historical or not). I enjoy all the ways it makes me think about how much things have changed, but also realize how much they haven't.
So much love for this book and series!

Audio: Some of the best audio ever. I have a weakness for Scottish accents anyway, so the fact that I can listen to some of my favorite books with a narrator that speaks with the correct accent makes this a total win for me. Plus Hamish McKinlay makes every character distinct, acts out the emotions so well, and is just everything I could want in a narrator. All the stars for his work.

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  • Neta_BER
  • 17-11-17

Yes please! the best historic M/M you will read!

To quote my review of the first book "It’s a slightly tragic love story, not because it’s about two men in a time that relationship is taboo, but because of WHO they are. And to me this is the strongest point about the book, David made the right choice for him, not the easiest selfish one... It was an unlikely treasure in a sea of (albeit lovely) romantic fairy tale type M/M books." And it still is!!!

David and Murdo return two years after the events in Provoked, and I have been waiting for them for sooooo long! I really have been thinking about the first book, wondering how the story will pick up after the non HEA ending, every once and awhile-that is how much the story has affected me and remained in my heart.

First of all the narration is top notch, I mean Joel Leslie level, acting every word with soul and devotion, no holding back, I believe I have traveled back in time GOOD. Hamish McKinlay is the PERFECT narrator for this book and the delicately constructer world of 1820's Scotland is brought to life vivaciously through his narration. His accent is deliciously addicting, his voice pleasant and tone perfect in each and every character.

Second, this story has everything I love about Historic Romance, well researched and interesting with new facts and social intricacies that add dimension and depth. David is living his life, while still remembering his brief time with Murdo, not expecting to ever see him again. The King's visit to Scotland has the entire country in a frenzy, boosted by Sir Walter Scott's generously Romantic stories and flair for the flamboyance of old, and brings Murdo back into David's life. It was an interesting dichotomy for me to read about Scott's influence in real live, having read a few of his books and loved them. It truly showed the fiction VS life in that time period and it was in interesting new angle for the story to me. David also meets a woman he befriended two years ago, a woman that wanted more from him then he could ever give her. Two years are a long time for David and her, and things have changed. I like that the plot line flowed smoothly despite the time difference. The characters grew in depth and emotion and this was a delight to read! I also liked that despite the book's welcome and fantastic touch on the real, darker, parts of that time period the romance is beautifully woven into the story and remains its leader without becoming a cliché for a second. The action is thrilling and compelling, you feel for each character and want them to do well. I love the conflicts David and Murdo face, they are real life issues you can relate to and also time appropriate, a masterpiece indeed.

This was an amazing continuation of the story and I am now anxiously looking forward to the next book!

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  • Trio
  • 20-11-20

Fantastic Story, McKinlay's Accents are Wonderful!

So glad for the excuse to listen to Beguiled. I accidentally listened to the third book in the series, and I kept thinking I was missing something lol.

Great series, and excellent in audio. Haimish McKinlay does an amazing job with the nuances of the Scots accents. Making each voice distinct cannot be easy, that's for sure.

A fantastic story, and I definitely recommend reading it... in order.

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  • CH
  • 29-10-20

Just amazing

This book is the second in this series. I love Joanna Chambers' style of writing. She evokes so many emotions in me but the tenderness and intimacy with which she writes is overwhelming.
The narrator is superb I especially adore Lord Murdo it doesn't get any better than this, it really doesn't.
Fantastic collaboration

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  • W. Floyd
  • 14-07-20

My latest Addiction is the Enlightenment Series

Once I began listening Hamish McKinley narrate Beguiled , it was nearly impossible to stop and do some adulting.

Therefore, I happily stayed in my pajamas , drinking tea and lounging on the sofa for the entire day while enjoying this poignant , relevant, hot AF, fascinating and spellbinding historical romance.

And thanks to über talented Hamish McKinley many distinguishable voices and acting talents , I was able to lose myself in this tale. He conjured the right mood , sense of place and brought the whole thing to life.

Beguiled is Book 2 of 3 in the Enlightenment series and it cannot be listen as a standalone.

#BooksILove #AudioCreditWellSpent #ListenedOn2020 #KindleFire #Audible

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  • Retired 39
  • 22-05-20

A great listen!

Beguiled, the second audiobook in the Enlightenment trilogy by Joanna Chambers, was even better than the first book.

Set two years after Lord Murdo Balfour and David Lauriston last met, these two men meet once again as King George IV is about to make his first visit to Edinburgh, a visit being ‘choreographed’ by Sir Walter Scott.

As narrated by Hamish McKinlay, the continuing story of David Lauriston and Murdo Balfour comes vividly to life, capturing the excitement of a rescue being orchestrated by Lauiston.

Now on to the final audiobook in the series, Enlightened.

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  • Troy
  • 16-05-20

Entertaining

Note: Review is for all three books in the series.
I totally enjoyed this trilogy. The couple are equal points hot, frustrating and engaging. Historical facts seemed right in. Narrator was perfect.

I was given these audiobooks in exchange for honest reviews.

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  • Clau
  • 15-04-20

So, so good!

Shees! This was fantastic!

The story starts two years after the end of Provoked, and all characters are slowly coming back to Edinburgh: Munro, Euan, Elizabeth. And all of their lives will end deeply entangled, with unexpected consequences.

George IV’s visit to Edinburgh and Sir Walter Scott's pageantry serves as background to the story, and it is there also to portray the political unrest of the times.

In those circumstances, Euan's visit is a bit suspicious and, at first, I was a little wary of him, thinking he could be trying to entrap David in some way. But soon it was evident that his motives were different.

Munro and David's relationship evolve a bit, but it's all relegated to a second plane when it becomes evident that Elizabeth's marriage to Sir Alasdair Kinnell is not a happy one, and is, quite plainly, a hell on earth for her. Euan and David are determined to rescue her, and, with Elizabeth's father benediction they go ahead with a harebrained plan to get her away of her husband and help her to settle in London.

There is a lot about women's position in this book, about the way in which they become her husband's propriety once married, and how helpless they are even when they are subject to the most brutal of treatments.

The story is truly suspenseful, with legitimately heart-stopping moments, but there is also a place for romance. And, god! I love what we have here. I love how these two men seem so angry at themselves for being helpless when faced with their unrelenting attraction. I love how we are beginning to see under Munro's facade of a bored, cynical aristocrat. David is now stronger, more self-assured, but he is still faithful to his principles. And they are at a point in the story in which they are aware that they are more than a fling for the other, but they still can't imagine a future in which they are together.

This is a beautifully written story, with complex, flawed but very human characters and a gorgeously depicted historical setting, and I simply loved every single word on it.

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  • Viv
  • 28-04-18

So Beautiful!

This is one of my all time favorite series and the audiobooks are simply amazing! Hamish Mckinlay brings David and Murdo to life with beautiful accents. I was on the edge of my seat towards the end and I already knew what happened. What a wonderful audiobook! Now onto the HEA in Enlightened!