Saint Sin

Mary Gillgannon
Saint Sin
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Soul Mate Publishing
Release Date
August 2013
Erotic Romance, Historical Romance

To save her brother from crushing gambling debt, Ariella Lyndgate is willing to do nearly anything…even become a thief. When offered an opportunity to cancel out the debt by retrieving a diamond called the Blue Moon from a man she's told isn't really the diamond's owner, she agrees. The diamond is currently in the possession of Michael St. Cyr, a wealthy earl known as "Saint Sin" because of his outrageous and decadent parties. Ariella arranges to attend one of these events and immediately begins her hunt for the diamond. She's searching her host's bedchamber when St. Cyr walks in.

Upon discovering a beautiful and voluptuous young woman in his personal apartments, Michael immediately assumes she's a "fashionable impure" sent by one of his friends to entertain him for the night. Ariella goes along with his assumption and is soon entangled in a complex and erotic deception. But as she gets deeper into the charade, she finds the elegant earl arouses more than just her passion. She can't seem to control her growing feelings for the man she's intent on robbing.

Michael, who'd long ago giving up caring about much of anything, finds himself enthralled with this young woman, who despite her incredible responsiveness, seems somehow still an innocent. Can sweet Ariella heal the pain left by his terrible loss all those years ago? Or will she betray him and break his heart?

Set in the vivid Regency world of glittering ballrooms, sinister gambling hells and squalid back alleyways, Saint Sin explores the sizzling temptation and wrenching choices that face two desperate people who must risk everything for love.

Book Review by Victoria Lane (reviewer)
Jan 09, 2014   [ OFFICIAL REVIEW ]
112 people found the following review helpful
SAINT SIN by Mary Gillgannon could have been a nice read, but it fell flat in all the important categories. It lacked character development, romantic development, and believable romance. I give this novel 2 stars only because the premise of the book has potential, but I don't recommend this book in its current state.

In SAINT SIN, twenty-five year old Ariella Lyndgate is finally getting a season in London, but her younger brother has ruined it by losing an unbelievable amount of money gambling. In order to save her brother, Ariella approaches the gaming den owner to work out a repayment schedule, but the owner provides only one way for Ariella to pay back her brother's debt--by stealing the Blue Moon, a large diamond owned by the notorious recluse, Michael St. Cyr, Earl of Penwell.

In her efforts to gain access and steal the diamond, Ariella has to spin some serious tales, and when those lies fail, she resorts to using her feminine wiles. Her efforts backfire, though, when she falls in love with Penwell and realizes that she's wronged him. Making up for her subterfuge won't be easy.

While the premise of the book--a young woman attempts to help her brother get out of debt--could have been developed into an enjoyable story, I did not enjoy this novel. From the start, Ariella's actions and reactions seemed contrived, and her interactions with Penwell were outrageous. There was very little character foundation for the reader to understand Ariella's irrational behavior, and there was no character development for her at all. Despite Ariella's proclaimed "change of heart", her character flaws in the beginning of the novel remained her flaws through to the end.

I honestly didn't see that much change in Penwell's character either. His only epiphany was that he was in love with Ariella, which when looked at closely, only highlights the fact that there was no foundation for, or development of, the romance. Their relationship was purely physical, and so the declarations of love in the end lacked any kind of credibility.

The purely physical aspect of the romance was also extremely graphic and pervasive, with some light bondage, earning a 5 out of 5 on the heat scale. Given the number of pages devoted to the physical intimacies, while this novel was categorized as your typical romance, it really should be categorized as erotic.

On the technical side, there were many typographical errors, including inconsistency throughout the novel of how the name of Penwell's former love interest is spelled--Alexandria or Alexandra. Given all of the foregoing, I would not recommend this novel to any readers.

(Editor's Note: We have changed the category to Erotic Romance)
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