Charles and Edward, A Modern Day Pretty Woman, is told in a series of emails between Charles, a hopeless incurable romantic, and Edward, his younger, and very demanding escort. Charles, an upper class London bookseller, travels the world selling his books. In his downtime, he chooses to spend time with Edward, a hairstylist by day, and escort by night. Their relationship is based on money, and how much Charles is willing to pay.
Throughout the emails, you will see Edward demanding more and more money, and Charles falling deeper in love, but being exhausted by all of Edward’s demands. It was clear to me that Edward didn’t give a damn about Charles, and that their relationship was very one sided. The story ended with a “to be continued”.
I believe the author wanted his readers to connect with Edward. I personally did not like Edward. I thought he was a user, and he used emotional blackmail to get what he wanted. I don’t think Edward ever had morals to begin with, so the line on the book jacket, “A sobering message of morals and the importance of staying true to oneself,” didn’t click with me. He was a penniless prostitute who received nice things from his “John” as gifts. –I don’t believe those gifts changed him for the worse.
It was an unique approach to tell the story within a series of emails. At times I felt that I was reading private emails between two real people, and that I shouldn’t be. It was slightly voyeuristic.
The cover is deceiving. Why the author chose a photo of a man and woman for a LGBT story is beyond me. I think that cover needs to be re-thought. Book covers sell! One really DOES judge a book by it’s cover, and someone who was interested in a LGBT story may not pick this book up because of the cover.
Overall, I did enjoy this story and I am looking forward to part II! Three out of Five Stars!
Favorite Line: Charles to Edward, “You should buy yourself a decent pair of trousers. Most self respecting beggars have better trousers than yours. But, of course, not many of them have Cartier rings!”
***I received an e-copy of this book from the author in exchange for a fair & honest review.