In the beginning of the nineteenth century, Micah ia a young letter student from Harvard. He is almost near to graduate and his professors want for him to be published as a poet. But Micah is from a middle class wealthy family that doesn't see a scholar career like something worthy or important for one of their sons. Luckily for Micah he is only the fourth son, and so he manages till now to escape the pression from his family and pursues his love for poetry. A love that lures him to Wroxham, a little village hours far from Boston, where he hopes to meet Jefferson Dering, a poet he listened to a lecture at Harvard, and that he hopes could give him some good advice for his writing.
When he meets Jefferson, he finds a man who lives like an hermit in a little village where no one seems to be aware of the great poet they have among them. Jefferson seems to be eager to have a kindred spirit to talk, but soon both Jefferson, with awareness, and Micah, without awareness, realize that there is a lot more than only love for poetry between them. It's also a physical love. But Micah is a very innocent and naivee boy, he has never had sexual experience before, nor with women or men, and the first reaction is to run away for this too much strong feelings.
Then they start a mail correspondence, first like two friends that talk about a common interest and little by little turning in a love correspondence. But Micah has to take some decision and there is also something of not human that binds Jefferson to Wroxham, something that has his rutes in Jefferson's family.
The story is very long and it's peaceful and quiet, it flows like a placid river. It starts slow and continues with a almost straight course. But it's very beautiful and romantic. The paranormal event is only a second line aspect, and this is for sure an historical romance. Reading it I remember some biography I have read of poets who chose to live alone far from the so-said civil society, to enjoy the nature and the simple life of the country. In this case there is also the matter of homosexuality, and Jefferson chooses a self-imposed exile to avoid the consequences of a sexual scandal in the scholar Harvard community.
Almost all the story is setting in Jefferson's cottage, and in a very small village, and both Micah than Jefferson come from wealthy family who provide for them, and so they live in comfort. But more than the historical accuracy of the setting, it's the sensuality between the two men that draws me, the poetry that becomes love stimulation, the words that become sex toys...
Beautiful cover that enlights you in one of the sexual game they play... you should read it!