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 realises 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?
Nice that the tall woman on the cover actually matches the character for once! Usually they describe the heroine as petite and she’s the same size the man is!
Don’t let anyone tell you this is a Regency romance, because it isn’t. It’s set in the late 1820s.
I was really excited about this book, and I have given many Sabrina Jeffries books great reviews – she’s a favourite of mine. However, I think you really need to read her previous series to get the most out of this one, because it’s as much a continuation as the beginning of something new. The other series is very good, so it’s no hardship.
Admittedly, I wasn’t in the best frame of mind when I started The Art of Sinning, but I suspect that even if I was I’d have found the first half a little slow. There aren’t a lot of characters or locations in the story, which means the mental lusting is drawn out longer than I would have liked.
Art seems to be the theme du jour for historical romances. I think it’s interesting because it really challenges the clichés usually attributed to the male characters in the genre. I also loved the blond hero. I get a little tired of all the men being identical, and don’t like the prejudices in the genre.
I liked that our heroine had been treated poorly in the past and had very little confidence, but she didn’t let it rule her. I like when a heroine can be vulnerable and strong at the same time.
I think it’s pretty obvious who is going to be paired up in the next books, but I actually liked those little clues, those moments between other characters.
While I liked a lot of things, it is true I struggled a bit both with the way the action all seemed to happen in the background, and also with the fact I kept struggling to remember how all these past characters were connected.
I would definitely recommend this book, as Sabrina Jeffries is a veteran author which means her writing is always solid. However I’m just not sure I liked it as much as I did the first couple of books in her last series.
Review copy provided by NetGalley.