Review: THE ART OF SINNING by Sabrina Jeffries
Disclaimer: I received an ARC of this novel from the publisher. (Also, beware of spoilers…maybe…)
What happens when you pair an American artist who looks like Adonis with an opinionated, but kindhearted lady of the ton? Well, nothing less than a masterpiece called The Art of Sinning to be sure!
American artist Jeremy Keane refuses to return home and take over his father’s business. He’d much rather sample bevvies of beauties abroad, in search of a model for the provocative masterpiece he’s driven to paint. When he meets Lady Yvette Barlow at a London wedding, he realizes she’s perfect for his work—and determines to capture the young heiress’s defiant spirit and breathtaking sensuality on canvas.
No stranger to scandal, Yvette agrees to be Keane’s subject—in exchange for his help gaining entry to the city’s brothels he knows intimately, so she can track a missing woman and solve a family mystery. But when their practical partnership leads to lessons in the art of sinning, can they find a bold and lasting love?
The first book in Sabrina Jeffries new series, Sinful Suitors, is certainly a work of art…not to mention that cover! (Is anybody else falling deeper in love with Jeremy just staring at the cover?)
But, truthfully, Jeremy is more than just a pretty face. He’s witty, charming, wicked, and not to mention, downright hilarious at times. Though he is rumoured to be a rakehell, Jeremy proves himself to be a decent and (contrary to his own opinion of himself) selfless.
Yvette is an equally “arresting” character. Wary of rogues and men in general, Yvette is skeptical of Jeremy’s intentions.
Mr. Keane’s warm gaze poured over her like honey. “I don’t recall ever seeing you at my exhibit. Trust me, I would have remembered.”
A shiver danced down her spine before she could steel herself against reacting. Very nicely done. She’d have to be on her toes with this one. “We attended it in the morning. I daresay you were still lying foxed in some gaming hell or nunnery.”
“Good God, here we go,” Edwin [Yvette’s brother] muttered under his breath, recognizing the vulgar slang for bawdy house.
“I am rarely foxed and never in a nunnery,” Mr. Keane retorted, “for fear that it might tempt the ‘nuns’ to bite me.”
“I should love to know what you consider ‘rarely,'” Yvette said. “That you even know that ‘bite’ means ‘cheat’ in street cant shows how you must spend your days.”
“And how you must spend yours,” he said with a gleam in his eye. “After all, you know the terms, too.”
Though Yvette and Jeremy have a mutual attraction to one another, they each hold back for different reasons. Yvette is wary of rogues in general because of both the scandal that haunts her family and her own past. Likewise, Jeremy is also haunted my the memories of his first marriage and home. And, though, Jeremy’s past is shaded with death, I still felt that Yvette’s past was more heartbreaking – especially after the full truth is revealed towards the end of the novel. It went completely against my expectations of a family reunion – and it showed how much of a scoundrel Yvette’s disowned brother, Samuel, truly was. Samuel is, in some ways, the true villain of this novel even though his is not physically present on the story.
But it goes to show that a well-written villain still has the ability to manipulate others, even from a distance.
It isn’t until they individually overcome their pasts that Jeremy and Yvette can admit what they feel for the other. Both characters grow stronger in the course of the narrative and the reader is witness to both a tale of friendship and love.
Speaking of friendship, the growing bromance between Jeremy and Edwin was equally as touching (and funny) as the interactions between Jeremy and Yvette. Brought together by their individual wariness (aka fear) of their sisters, Edwin and Jeremy decide to open their own club…but that is a tale for another time. (No, really, Ms. Jeffries should write a novel based solely on the interaction between these two because they are so entertaining….it’s like watching a sketch comedy!)
The Art of Sinning is an imaginary masterpiece that combines humour and romance, and is home to a cast of characters with honourable intentions – some of which are hilariously misguided. A summer must-read!
(aka Jeremy’s Muse – though he knows it not!)
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This entry was posted on July 7, 2015 by Rika Ashton. It was filed under Book Reviews, Favourite Authors and was tagged with art of sinning, clarissa, cover, edwin, historical romance, jeremy, Sabrina Jeffries, study of seduction, yvette.