The first novel from Xavier Axelson is set against a backdrop of decadence, privilege, and intrigue. Virago, the royal tailor, makes a discovery that will test the bonds of brotherhood, unravel the forbidden secrets of his heart and threaten the very fabric of his existence. In a land where cruelty is disguised as allegiance, loyalty is masked by obligation and the laws of sumptuary govern the people, nothing is more dangerous than Velvet.

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By Don (Palm Bay, FL) · ★★★★☆ · November 12, 2012
Reviewed on Hearts On Fire...

This well written though sometimes melodramatic historical novel brings to life the intrigues of the court and the secrets of the heart. Virago has just become the new royal tailor after his father is run down by a carriage. He has al... ...more
By Bending The Bookshelf (Canada) · ★★★☆☆ · March 14, 2013
Despite having multiple short stories and novellas to his name, including my review of The Incident that brought him by for an interview last year, Velvet marks the first full-length novel from Xavier Axelson. Although it didn't necessarily work for me on a romantic level, I did find it to be an... ...more
By Jody (Lincoln, NE) · ★★★★☆ · December 08, 2012
Velvet is a sweeping historical story showing the ugly underbelly of royalty amidst its riches and pomp in a time where loving another man could get you killed. Into this ugliness comes the simple beauty of a fabric that becomes the catalyst to a new life for a simple tailor, his blind brother, a... ...more
By Love (Oak Harbor, WA) · ★★★☆☆ · March 22, 2015
2.5 star review by Dan

The laws of sumptuary, which allow the execution of the common people for things which should only belong to the nobility; homosexuality punishable by severe torture, then execution; a totally clueless homosexual; and melodrama, lots of melodrama.

The book sounded more like a... ...more
By Cam (Bonne Terre, MO) · ★★★★☆ · November 14, 2012
Reviewed on

I really liked this book, and rated it 4/5. Definitely a solid first novel for Axelson. I hope to see more. ...more
By CoffeeTimeRomance · ★★★★☆ · December 01, 2014
Like his father before him, Virago takes his place as tailor to the king. He enjoys his work, yet his heart longs for what is impossible to have.

Making music is much like breathing for Seton. He plays from his soul, hoping one day to share his love of music with someone special.

Growing up with Pr... ...more
By Tee loves Kyle Jacobson (Worcester, MA) · ★★★★★ · November 16, 2012
This review is a little hard for me to write but in a GOOD way! First I have to say that I love absolutely love Historical books. I love the time period and I love how Xavier weaved this story. There are a few things in it that really took me by surprise. Some of the material is definitely not fo... ...more
By Cole (The United States) · ★★★★☆ · December 04, 2012
Review posted at The Armchair Reader.

I've found in the past that Xavier Axelson has a rather unique style of writing, though always somewhat different from work to work, and this novel is no different. In part allegory and seen as a cautionary tale from the eyes of the somewhat naive and innocent... ...more
By Liberty Ann (Dallas, TX) · ★★★★☆ · November 26, 2012
My Review: 4 Stars, 5 Flames
This is an interesting review to write as I have mixed feelings about this book. It was well written and dramatic although sometimes a bit over the top. After the excerpt above, the story begins in earnest. Virago, the main character, has just been promoted to be the n... ...more
By Lena (Stafford, VA) · ★★★★☆ · January 01, 2013
When someone discovers that almost everything they've ever believed in is indeed a lie, it's soul shattering. Things that were taken for granted, now lie in ruins at their feet; the world is turned upside down and trust is broken. The key to salvaging their dignity is to admit they were wrong and... ...more