Saturday, June 2, 2012

Sinful by Sharon Page (e-novella)

Ten years ago, Lyan and Estelle exchanged marriage vows in a makeshift ceremony with no priest or witness present -- after spending their wedding night, Lyan wakes up alone with half of his money stolen by Estelle.

Now he must face her again -- as a Bow Street Runner, Lyan was hired to locate Lady Maryanne, an heiress, and Estelle is the last person to see her before she went missing.

Both Lyan and Estelle know that what's in their past hasn't been put to rest at all -- and old emotions threaten to break through to the present. Lyan's ready to pick up where they left off -- but is Estelle?

I like Trevelyan Foxton because he's a man of integrity. When he "married" Estelle ten years ago and consummated the marriage with her, he believed in his heart that she was his wife -- even when she abandoned him, he still remained faithful to his vows to her.

He had a bride. He had made a vow to Sally Thomas. It still stood, in his mind, legal or not. Whether either of them wanted it or not.
- loc 403

I truly wondered what made Estelle (Sally) run away so suddenly -- and why she never looked back and thought if she had made a mistake or not. Instead, she sets up a new identity and a shop --

When it's finally revealed in the end, I didn't think Estelle's reasons were compelling enough for her to run away.

But what's done is done -- and I love how Lyan tries to pick up the pieces of their lives and move forward.

Things are more complicated now than before -- Lyan is the missing heir to an earldom and, if Estelle (Sally) thought she had good reasons for leaving him before, she has better reasons for refusing him now.

She couldn't marry him. He was going to be an earl. She was a shopkeeper who wanted to forge an independent life.
- loc 916

I found it ironic that Estelle also helped young ladies elope with their young men -- after Estelle ensured that the men were sincere. Couldn't she see Lyan's sincerity and devotion to her?

This was an okay read -- I can't quite figure out why this story didn't stand out more -- maybe it lacked emotional intensity? Or character development? Even though I did not really see change happen in Estelle, I'm glad Lyan got his happy ending and Sharon Page resolves the mystery of the missing heiress nicely in the end.



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