Summer is over, but just because the temperature is dropping, doesn't mean we have to stop reading scorching hot books! Frisky Fall Saturdays is our new weekly post created by The Autumn Review, The Bookish Babe, Hackaroo's Reviews, and Sim-Sational-Books. Feel free to join in. (let us know so we can add a link to your post) As those leaves start piling up in the yard, ignore them and pick up a sexy book!
**The books featured on FRISKY FALL SATURDAYS are for adults. If you are under 18 years of age, or do not like smexy books, please stop here. **
Series: The Original Sinners#2Oh. My. God. This book. I have to say, The Angel was a shock. A delicious surprise, which may seem surprising since I've read and enjoyed book one, The Siren. I feel silly for being surprised, but typically, "seconds" in a series tend to be a bit of a letdown. The Angel, though, was not only as good as The Siren, it was beyond incredible. It was a gorgeous piece of work that has left me feeling slightly obsessed with The Original Sinners.
Publisher: Harlequin Mira
Publication Date: September 25, 2012
Source: Received from publisher via NetGalley.
No safe word can protect the heart. Infamous erotica author and accomplished dominatrix Nora Sutherlin is doing something utterly out of character: hiding. While her longtime lover, Søren—whose fetishes, if exposed, would be his ruin—is under scrutiny pending a major promotion, Nora's lying low and away from temptation in the lap of luxury.
Her host, the wealthy and uninhibited Griffin Fiske, is thrilled to have Nora stay at his country estate, especially once he meets her traveling companion. Young, inexperienced and angelically beautiful, Michael has become Nora's protégé, and this summer with Griffin is going to be his training, where the hazing never ends.
But while her flesh is willing, Nora's mind is wandering. To thoughts of Søren, her master, under investigation by a journalist with an ax to grind. And to another man from Nora's past, whose hold on her is less bruising, but whose secrets are no less painful. It's a summer that will prove the old adage: love hurts.
For those who've read The Siren (and if you haven't, please remedy that ASAP.), I'm sure you're dying to know what happened after that sad ending. (Poor Wes. Poor Nora.) The Angel resumes over a year later, but thankfully, Reisz slowly and seamlessly fills in the blanks throughout the story. Nora and Soren are together and happy. But an investigation into Soren's past sends Nora and her new student Michael out of sight, to stay with Griffin. Though she loves Soren and misses him desperately, the time away from him forces, or allows, Nora to rehash her past, and confront unresolved and painful feelings for the love Nora turned away. All the while, Michael, whose desperation pushed him to drastic actions, is finding himself. An eager student, a willing lover, an Angel, this story is as much Michael's as it is Nora's.
What I loved the most about The Angel was the fact that author Tiffany Reisz surprised me on almost every page. I felt that I knew Nora so well, and Wes, to a large extent, and that I had a true grasp on them. Even though I didn't get to know Soren, Kingsley, and Griffin particularly well in The Siren, I dismissed them, particularly Griffin, as easily-pegged characters. Ohhhh, how wrong I was, and I am happy to admit it. What Reisz has mastered is the art of creating fully dimensional characters. Her characters are good (sometimes), bad (a lot of the time), and always so good at being so bad. Take Soren, for example. He's a Priest. A very, very good Priest who has done remarkable things for the Church. And yet, he has broken vows. He's a Sadist. He has been in love with Nora since she was fifteen. He has given the very best parts of himself to the Church, and yet he is the head of the Underground. He's Complex. I also love that characters I originally thought of as marginal, are not marginal in the slightest. Griffin is a character I dismissed as a fun, "fill in" character in The Siren. But in The Angel, Griffin is magnificent, becoming my favorite in the story. And Michael. Who could forget poor Michael? I thought his appearance in book one was a device used to wake Nora up. I never imagined he would play a central role in The Angel. I'm left feeling blown away by these characters.
Speaking of blown away (heh), The Angel is one of the most erotic books I've ever read. Sometimes it was playful, sometimes it was scary, but it was always seductive. Reisz has a remarkable way of writing sexual scenes. Her seduction lies more in the implication than in relying on an actual "description" of the act. The scene works as a whole; the type sheets on the bed, the color of candles lit, the color of lingerie worn, the whisper of a breath on the back of a neck, the placement of a hand, a sigh... It all works beautifully together to create an intensely erotic atmosphere that will leave you feeling heady and completely satisfied.
The Angel has helped secure The Original Sinners series on my "Must-Read-or-I-Will-Die" list. The clever, sharp, beautifully seductive writing; the characters that I love, like, and am terrified of; the story of a group of Sinners, these complicated, worthwhile characters, have all combined in this perfect storm to create what I consider a perfect book. The ending left me crying...on a bike...at the gym. Sad tears? Happy tears? I'll never tell, but I will tell you that I will cut someone to read book three, The Prince.
**Not for the easily offended!**
"You know I don't mind sloppy seconds. And knowing Pope Whatadick, he probably blesses his cum before he blows it." (eARC, 20%)
" 'I had this dream the other night that I was eating oysters at Sacred Heart, and Soren rode in on a unicorn. I thought it meant something, but when I told him about it, he said I wasn't allowed to eat Cajun food before bed anymore. That man has no respect for Jungian archetypes.' " (eARC, 35%)
" 'Thank you, Alfred,' Griffin said, taking the supplies. 'There's a thousand dollars in the cookie jar. Go buy yourself something pretty.
'I will purchase a firearm and shoot you with it,' Griffins butler said, bowing elegantly. 'Master Griffin.' " (eARC, 48%)
" 'Winter,' she finally said, 'can be so beautiful and so cruel. Cruel and cold. And if you live in the presence of winter you never have summer.' Nora stepped close to him and put her nose at his cheek. 'You smell like summer. Like clean laundry hanging out in the sun. That's an amazing smell too.' " (eARC, 70%)
You can purchase The Angel at:
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository