A Gathering Storm (LenR’s Review)

review masterTitle: A Gathering Storm (Porthkennack #2)
Author: Joanna Chambers
Publisher: Riptide Publishing
Release Date: April 17th 2017
Genre(s):MM Historical Romance
Page Count: 309
Reviewed by:LenaRibky
Heat Level: 3 flames out of 5
Rating: 2 stars out of 5

When grief-stricken scientist Sir Edward Fitzwilliam provokes public scorn by defending a sham spiritualist, he’s forced to retreat to Porthkennack to lick his wounds. Ward’s reputation is in tatters, but he’s determined to continue the work he began after the death of his beloved brother.

In Porthkennack, Ward meets Nicholas Hearn, land steward to the Roscarrock family. Ward becomes convinced that Nick, whose Romany mother was reportedly clairvoyant, is the perfect man to assist with his work. But Nick—who has reason to distrust the whims of wealthy men—is loath to agree. Until Fate steps in to lend a hand.

Despite Nick’s misgivings, he discovers that Ward is not the high-handed aristocrat he first thought. And when passion ignites between them, Nick learns there’s much more to love than the rushed, clandestine encounters he’s used to. Nevertheless, Nick’s sure that wealthy, educated Ward will never see him as an equal.

A storm is gathering, but with Nick’s self-doubts and Ward’s growing obsession, the fragile bond between the two men may not be strong enough to withstand it.

It took me almost 3 weeks to finish this book. And I can assure you, it was too long, even for my slow reading speed recently because of my busy schedule.

So, on a scale of a reading pleasure from 1 to 5, it is probably even less than 2 stars, but I’d like to remain fair: this book probably is not THAT bad, but it didn’t work for me at all. Looking back at my everyday’s struggle with this novel, and knowing the ending now, I can say, it would be better to DNF it. But here I am and I owe a modest explanation for my low rating for a book that seems to win the hearts of many readers.

I love historical fiction if it can convey a sense of time, the feeling of a past era. I didn’t have this feeling reading A Gathering Storm. The fact that Porthkennack is a fictional small town on the Cornwall coast, could hardly justify the absence of any historical feeling. It could have been set on a fictional planet in an imaginable universe; or even in a vacuum; it would not have played a role. A Gathering Storm is a novel without ANY historical feel. And neither experts from The Collected Writing of Sir Edward Fitzwilliam (I didn’t get their purpose here at all) , nor the date of the mid-1850th that appeared in every chapter’s title, nor old-fashioned-sttyled dialogues couldn’t change this fact or my opinion about it.

A wealthy scientist Ward who came to Porthkennack to investigate certain effects in electromagnetism, found after some failures a perfect subject for his dubious scientific experiments – Nick Hearn, an attractive local bastard, whose mother was Romany Gypsy and whose natural grandfather, turned out to be old Godfrey Roscarrock himself, a local landlord with a lot of power.

This unusual constellation and particular circumstances under which Ward and Nick met could offer an exciting love story with a storm of emotions. Unfortunately, the closer these two lovebirds got, the more tedious and monotonous became the story. I didn’t find the main characters authentic or interesting or charming to be care of, their mutual attraction came from nowhere and was difficult for me to buy, and even prolonged sex scenes couldn’t convince me.
Actually they did just the opposite, I skimmed most of them.

And the dialogues! Did adult educated people talk this way, even more than 150 years ago?!

I was bored with this book to death.

It was my first book by Joanna Chambers and most likely the last one.

We have different ideas of historical fiction.

Porthkennack Series

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Galley copy of A Gathering Storm (Porthkennack #2) provided by Riptide Publishing via NetGalley in exchange of an honest review.


A passionate reader from Germany. I learned to read at the age of 4 and never stopped since then, though my books from that time were very different from what they are now. English is my third language, and I'm sorry for all grammar mistakes I made in my reviews. But I assure you, that my reading English is much better than my writing English. I'm a seeker for the books that differ from mainstream, that provoke the reader or have very often very opposite ratings.