Title – Tempting a Sinner
Author – Kate Pearce
As young lovers, Benedict Keyes and Malinda Rowland are separated by class. Benedict, the heir to English aristocracy, and Malinda the daughter of a sergeant in the English army.
When Malinda’s father dies in battle, seeking to protect her and her mother, Benedict rashly marries her. But when his father learns of it he has the marriage annulled and Malinda sent away.
Eighteen years later Malinda returns to England and with Benedict’s help, begins to unravel the mystery behind her father’s death. But in their way are the secrets of the past and the ones they keep from one another.
“You haven’t told him the truth, have you?”
“And which truth would that be, my lord?”
“The reason you left.”
Malinda went still, and Benedict watched a triumphant smile grow on his father’s haggard face. He stepped in front of her.
“The fact that her mother was my mistress, and that your darling Malinda is my bastard, and therefore your half sister?”
Benedict and Malinda must weave their trail through secrets and lies and their own conflicted desires. Together they will find out the truth of the death of Malinda’s father and the payroll he was guarding. Also Malinda learns what Benedict has become and of the activities that go on in the Sinners Club. Activities that she herself desires to be a part of.
Wow. Pearce is not shy about what she infuses her tales with. There is sexual activity for all here. Man and woman. Woman and woman. Man and man. Threesomes of various kinds. Voyeurism. All told in rich and powerful detail with a prose and tempo often missing in erotica.
But Pearce also writes a really good mystery here. Not just some filler until the next sex scene. She layers secret upon secret and discovery upon discovery. Remove the sex and you have a very good mystery novel that would stand on its own.
But why would you want to?
Surprisingly good. I will definitely be looking for others in her collection of stories.
A very good read.