July 4, 2011
Historical M/M Romance
Ebook, 127 pages
Net Galley Review
Provided by Publisher
They met in a port-side tavern, their lust-filled moments stolen from days of marching and madness. After eighteen months, Captain Rudolph von Ratzlaff and First Lieutenant Mathias Hofmann have decided to run away from everything they hold dear. Resigning their commissions is social suicide, but there's no other choice. Someone will eventually see Rudolph's partiality toward Mathias.
Now their plans have gone horribly awry... When Mathias goes to Rudolph's tent after their last battle, his lover looks at him without a hint of recognition. Mathias can hardly believe the man he knew is gone. He wants to fill in so many of Rudolph's missing memories, but the doctor says a shock could result in permanent damage. The pain of seeing Rudolph on a daily basis, when Rudolph doesn't remember their love, is excruciating. Now Mathias must decide whether he wants to fight for the man he loves or forget him completely...
The blurb above is the perfect setup for this devastating and compassionate tale. Mathias has resigned his commission and now his love, Rudolph, doesn’t even know who he is. Rudolph injured his head during the battle when he fell from his horse and is suffering from a rare case of amnesia. Rudolph can’t remember the last two years of his life and, at times, can’t remember what happened yesterday. Mathias has no one, no family, no friends, no employment. Rudolph is being sent home to his “large aristocratic family and fortune” to convalesce. Mathias decides to journey along with Rudolph to Berlin - hoping that along the way something; anything will spark recognition in Rudolph’s eyes.
During the journey, Mathias has to hold his emotions and the nature of their relationship in check for fear of damaging Rudolph even further. He continuously looks for the smallest hint of the man that Rudolph use to be. Mathias’ despair grows even more when he realizes Rudolph perceives him only as a friend and Berlin holds more than just family.
MUFFLED DRUM is an emotionally charged tale driven by vibrant characters. It was heartbreaking to watch Rudolph and Mathias as they struggled to find their way back to one another. It was sorrowful knowing Mathias could do or say nothing to the man he loved – to tell Rudolph of their past. Whereas, Rudolph was now living two years in the past, has no inclination of what Mathias meant to him, and has someone waiting for him in Berlin.
Overall, a splendid second-chance at love. Mathias and Rudolph overcome the odds and rediscover what they once shared.