A Matter of Sin by Jess Michaels

A Matter of Sin by Jess Michaels
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Length: Full Length (203 pgs)
Genre: Historical
Other: M/F
Rating: 5 stars
Reviewed by Bittersweet

Scandal between the pages…surrender between the sheets.

The Ladies Book of Pleasures, Book 1

The widowed Lady Isabel Avenbury has one remaining younger sister to shepherd into an advantageous marriage, and then she will be free. Free to take a lover to fill her lonely nights—the only option left for a woman on the delicate edge of a certain age.

Except when she chaperones her sister to a country house party, she is taken aback by her sudden, undeniable attraction to the host. And deliciously scandalized when she finds a copy of the notorious, much-gossiped-about Ladies Book of Pleasures in his library.

When Seth Rowland, Marquis Lyndham, notices his book is missing, his interest is piqued as to which of the potential young brides at his party has absconded with it—and he’s shocked to discover it’s Isabel. Though older than the women he’d planned to court, the powerful beauty exudes a sensuality he cannot ignore.

The book inspires them to begin a desperate, passionate affair. But their time together is running out and they must choose. Follow society’s rules, or take a chance at love.

What a delightful book! It had been a long time since I’d read a regency romance that felt so authentic. This was my first book by Jess Michaels, but I’m definitely going to be looking out for more from this author.

A well written novel, I was drawn into the world of Lady Isabel Avenbury and Lord Lyndham without any effort.

On the one hand, as heir to the marquis, Lyndham must find a woman to marry and produce heirs. On the other hand, Lady Avenbury, a young widow, is ready to marry her sister off and enjoy her life to the fullest–including sexually. The attraction between them is palpable but to make matters worse, the Ladies Book Of Pleasure, (a forbidden book circulating the Ton), comes into the picture, creating the best and most erotic kind of trouble for them.

Unlike many other period novels where characters seem made out of cardboard, Lyndham and Avenbury felt real and human. As their feelings and their affair developed, so did they.

Throughout the book, I laughed and smiled at the moments of joy, almost cried at certain points, and stood hanging onto the edge of my seat at others. The emotion between the characters jumped out of the book and I could do nothing but root for them and hope that everything would end well in the end, for although there is a happy ending, A Matter of Sin was not entirely predictable.

All in all, A Matter of Sin was a delightful, steamy and romantic read that had me craving for more. I will look forward to more stories featuring this infamous, Ladies Book of Pleasure.

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