Title: A Valet’s Duty
Author: H. Lewis-Foster
Publisher: Silver Publishing
Characters: Henry Simpkins, Rafe Wayshaw
Sub-Genre: Historical, Erotic Romance
At the turn of the twentieth century, Henry Simpkins is a valet at Taverslow, the Earl of Wayshaw’s Somerset home. When the Earl’s younger brother, Rafe, arrives from his villa in Italy, Henry is given the task of caring for his mischievous dogs, Pepe and Paolo. As part of his valet’s duties, he also goes to Rafe’s room each night to tidy away his clothes.
One night, Rafe tentatively asks Henry to go beyond his valet’s duty to relieve Rafe’s sexual tensions. Henry enjoys their increasingly intimate encounters, but he’s soon disturbed to find he feels more for Rafe than mere physical attraction. Henry faces a difficult decision, as he knows he cannot remain in the same house as Rafe if his affections are not returned.
A short historical novella about a lord and a valet falling in love. We get the story from Henry’s point of view alone. He’s getting older, and he need stable employment. With Lord Rafe, however, Henry’s duties include tending to his two dogs—Pepe and Paolo—while he hates dogs. But they grow on him, just as Rafe’s shy requests of tending to him at night. But the morning after brings forth undeniable truths of how the two of them cannot be together.
This is an erotic quickie. The pace and the writing reflect that, with everything happening fast and without a lot of historical background. Nonetheless, both men grow on you, and you root for them. There’s not much to speak of, only crossing the social lines and accepting love. Henry knows who and what he is, while Rafe is shier and more of a mystery. Is he only using Henry to get him to bed? So, overall, a good sensual quick read with relatively strong characters and hot sex.
Reviewed By: Susan