Review: The Saint by Tiffany Reisz

Print Length: 420 pages
Publisher: Harlequin MIRA (June 24, 2014)

From In the beginning, there was him. 

Gutsy, green-eyed Eleanor never met a rule she didn't want to break. She's sick of her mother's zealotry and the confines of Catholic school, and declares she'll never go to church again. But her first glimpse of beautiful, magnetic Father Søren Stearns and his lust-worthy Italian motorcycle is an epiphany. Suddenly, daily Mass seems like a reward, and her punishment is the ache she feels when they're apart. He is intelligent and insightful and he seems to know her intimately at her very core. Eleanor is consumed—and even she knows that can't be right. 

But when one desperate mistake nearly costs Eleanor everything, it is Søren who steps in to save her. She vows to repay him with complete obedience…and a whole world opens before her as he reveals to her his deepest secrets. 

Danger can be managed—pain, welcomed. Everything is about to begin.

My Rating: 5 stars out of 5

WARNING: This book is recommended for mature audiences ONLY due to language and explicit sexual content.

Once again, I feel as though I have received an emotional flogging from Ms.Reisz, and as always, I kept crawling back begging for more. 

Let me being by saying that The Saint is not a precursor to her Original Sinners Series as I first thought from the synopsis, it is more like an extension of it. In this first installment, we learn all about a fifteen-year old "Elle" through the eyes of a now grown Nora. We meet her religious mother, and her scumbag father, and we learn about the inner struggle that is Elle trying to earn both her parent's love. We also meet Søren (and later Kingsley) for the first time which was an experience in itself!

I really enjoyed this book, I won't say "more" than her others, as you simply cannot judge one over another as they are all extremely well written and engaging. I will say that it was  interesting, growing up with Elle as Nora recanted stories of her childhood. You couldn't help but feel a bit of sympathy for her at first, seeing the way that she was torn between her parents (even when attempting to help her father almost landed her in jail). 

Even when she first meets Søren, and knowing the outcome of their story, I still found myself biting my nails as I wondered what was to become of them. Their story, while the main focus of the plot, did not overshadow all of the other elements that were present, rather it added to them, adding more depth to the characters (and relationship) that us as fans have come to know so well. It also gives you a more intimate and in-depth look into the relationship that is Nora and Søren, and even disbelievers should find something to like about him in this story. He's just that... dare I say likeable? He's honest with her even when he's worried it will scare her off, and he helps her (and even lets her go at one point) because he knows it is what is best for her. If I wasn't a fan of his before now? I definitely am after reading this! 

I do hope that the other stories in this particular series, share more details of her life with us, for instance I would love to know more about her relationship with Kingsley whilst she was still young, and especially the defining moment when she chose not to do something for him. I'm also curious as to how things will end, not only between Nora and her new "friend", but also within the Nora/Søren/Kingsley triangle that none of the players can seem to break. 

In closing, I have to say the ending, while it did bring tears to my eyes, was not as emotionally scarring as I kept thinking it would be, and for that I am thankful. If Ms.Reisz had ended this novel the way I thought she was intending to, I would not be here to write this review, rather I would be in the corner in a puddle of emotional goo.

DISCLAIMER: I received a copy of this novel in exchange for my honest review. This has not affected my review in any way, all opinions contained in this review are 100% my own.

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