Monday, November 24, 2008

Review: To Seduce A Sinner

Title: To Seduce A Sinner
Author: Elizabeth Hoyt
Genre: Historical Romance
Series: The Legend of the Four Soldiers/Book 2

It's May, 1765 and Jasper Renshaw, Viscount Vale, finds himself hung over with an aching head and now he's being left at the alter, literally. If that wasn't bad enough he's being left for a curate. But all is not lost for Jasper is about to be rescued by a lady who's name he can not remember but who intrigues him far more than he ever imagined. And so they strike a bargain, this lady and lord, and plan to wed for convenience and heirs but not for love or so he thinks.

I have been waiting anxiously for this book ever since reading the first book in the series, To Taste Temptation. Elizabeth Hoyt can certainly write characters that leave you wanting more. Vale and Melisande's story is no exception. The premise is a bit of a switch with the lady proposing to the gentleman. Melisande is not your typical demure lady and she is more than a match for Vale in both intelligence and wit.

Melisande Fleming knows what it's like to love someone from afar and have that someone unaware of your existence. She has been living like this for six years. Years that she has spent watching Vale and longing for him. Then fate stepped in and Melisande took a risk. She risked rejection but what she got in return was the man she loved. It wasn't something that she could possibly tell Vale, she didn't want to scare him off. So she played her role of dutiful wife and slowly eased her way into Vale's heart.

Jasper is a bit of a laid back hero with secrets of his own. He was a soldier in the Colonies and fought in a bloody battle where he was taken prisoner by the Wyandot tribe. While a prisoner he is forced to witness horrible acts of violence and torture that have left him scarred inside. He hides his feelings of grief and remorse behind his dry wit and devil may care attitude. But he is still determined to find out who betrayed his troops location to the French and the Wyandots. His outlook on his marriage to Melisande is one of practicality at first. But once he realizes that his sedate wife is anything but sedate in the bedroom he is now more that ever curious to find out who she really is.

This story is so different from what I was expecting. There are times when Melisande comes across as more of an alpha than Vale. I think he allows her to take the lead because it's not something he's used to and he's curious to see where she'll lead him. Melisande believes herself in love with Vale but doesn't really know him. As the story progresses she learns more about him and continues to love him despite what he considers the most terrible of faults.

He prowled towards her, the snuff box still in his long, bony fingers. His curling mahogany hair was pulled back in a queue that was coming undone; his face was lined and sad, pouches beneath his eyes, testament to his sleepless nights. His wide shoulders were covered in a brown and red coat with a stain on the elbow, and his shoes were scuffed. She had never felt so angry at another person and at the same time been aware of how beautiful he was to her.

How perfect in all his imperfections. page 322

Vale on the other hand takes his time to figure out his new wife. He comes across as the type of man to analyze and study a situation. His physical attraction to Melisande comes quickly but his emotions are slower to come about having been keep in check for so long. One scene, after Vale and Melisande make love, poignantly shows the difference of where each of them are in the relationship.

But he shifted beneath her and withdrew his flesh from hers. She bit back the cry of loss, because he was lifting her and carrying her to the bed. He lay her down and bent over her to kiss her gently on the lips. Then he turned away and left the room through the connecting door.

He never even saw the arms she held out to him. page 183

Hoyt's writing is as wonderful as always with characters that make you want to know more about them. She reveals pieces of Vale and Melisande to the reader and allows us to get to know them as they get to know each other. There is still the mystery of the traitor to solve and some progress is made on that but more questions are also raised. We are introduced to the hero and heroine of the next story, To Beguile a Beast, which is due for release May 2009. It should prove to be as interesting and captivating a read as To Seduce a Sinner. To learn more about this author you can go to Elizabeth Hoyt's website.

Rating: A-


  1. Wow, great review. Those excerpts are really fantastic, too. I haven't read any of Hoyt yet, though I've been wanting to. Maybe something I will suggest to Santa...

  2. Just got this one in the mail. Why oh why do I not have time to read when I have so many great books!

    Great review!

  3. Thanks CJ! Start your list for Santa. I've started mine and continue to add to it. lol

    Hoyt also writes contemporaries under the name Julia Harper. So far she has HOT out now and for the love of pete due out in Jan. Here's my review of HOT if you're interested.

  4. Jessica ~ you're not the only one. I keep finding more books I want to read but can't find more time to read them.

  5. I really, really enjoyed this one when I read it not long ago as well!