IN THE GARDEN OF SIN
August 1, 2009
Bantam Books, an Imprint of the Random House Publishing Group
Rating: 4 Cups
In The Garden of Sin
It will take every ounce of strength Hannah Leeds possesses to pull off this little caper, but her dearly beloved uncle’s life depends on her success. She must pass herself off as a courtesan in training, so she may get close enough to the Duke to get some answers.
Loving unconditionally, and expecting the same in return, was the great tragedy of Domenico Vitturi’s existence. His physical scars are superficial compared to the terrible rending of his heart.
Hannah sets off to become one of Domenico’s novices, not knowing nearly enough to prepare her for what is to come. Her only objective is to undercover information that will get her uncle out of prison, but her plans go terribly awry. Domenico has a presence about him that Hannah is inexplicably drawn to, and suddenly holding on to her precious virginity loses its appeal.
Hanna and Domenico would seem to have very little in common, but that is what makes their story so titillating. He awakens her inner siren, while she breathes life back into his broken heart.
Humans are only one of the many beings walking the planet, and not nearly as high up on the food chain as they would like to believe. Vampires like Anton Turek and Galiana Solsa consider them a quite inferior race, much like cattle, to be used and discarded when no longer necessary.
Lili and Elic have a much more amicable relationship with humans, considering their need for sexual release. As a succubus and incubus, Lili and Elic would go stark raving mad if they could not find a human outlet for their rapacious sexual appetites, despite their love for each other.
Galiana is thousands of years old, compared to Anton’s hundreds, and she never lets him forget it. He is a puppet to wield as she sees fit, and when he tries to have a mind of his own, the punishment is quite severe. Anton wants Lili back, if only to deliver much belated revenge, but Galiana has other ideas. A new slave would be nice, and Elic would fit the role to perfection, if she can separate the two lovebirds.
This is an age-old power play between Anton and Galiana, but the real story lies in the love between Lili and Elic. Their relationship is intricate and undeniably painful.
The dynamics in this story are amazing. The innocent and the debauched paired up with all types of paranormal beings. I especially like how Anton is not necessarily all bad, and you cannot decide if you feel sorry for him or believe he deserves his lot in life. A lot of focus is on periphery characters, and I would like to see more of Lili and Elic, but this is undoubtedly eroticism at its finest.
Reviewer for Coffee Time Romance & More