Blog Tour: The Saint by Tiffany Reisz, Review

Release Date: June 24, 2014
The Saint
by Tiffany Reisz
Book 1 of The Original Sinners: The White Years
5 stars

Last month I bought a paperback of THE SIREN, but I still haven't read it. So when the opportunity came to read and review THE SAINT, which was labeled as the prequel to the series, I grabbed the chance to get to know more about the series that I am soon going to start.

The first thing I can say about the book is this: although the reading order says this is a prequel, I recommend reading THE SAINT only once you're done reading The Original Sinners: The Red Years. Yes, this book tells us the story of how 16-year-old Eleanor/Nora first met 29-year-old Søren, and the beginnings of their incredibly complicated and taboo relationship (and later on, with other people). However, it also opens with present-day Nora thinking about major events that have already come to pass. Absolutely spoilerific since the recollection is done by segments; and between those segments, present-day Nora and another character keep talking about things that happened in the course of The Red Years series.

Tiffany Reisz does a great job of shifting from present to past, and vice versa. Normally I'd be annoyed with time intervals, but it worked in this book because I didn't feel overwhelmed by the controversial nature of the story. It was slow enough to let me see where both characters are coming from, especially Eleanor. It was detailed enough to let me see the how's, why's and how come's, if you know what I mean.

I always thought that it takes two ways for a controversial story to be truly understood. The author must be able to relay the story well and let readers realize the possibility of such a story to happen. Readers, for their part, must be open-minded. I think Tiffany Reisz did her part very well. In order to appreciate this book and the rest of the series, it will also be up to you to be accepting of its premises and realities. 

I also realized that if I had THE SIREN and read THE SAINT last year, I probably won't appreciate it like I do now. 

For those who are new to the series, this story is not a debate about religion. I think it just shows the humanity of all people, even those whom we regard as venerable. Once upon a time they were teenagers who went through puberty, know what I mean? People have a huge capacity to love without restrictions. Everyone has physical, emotional, mental and spiritual needs. From what I can understand now, the series explores all that and THE SAINT, as the prequel book, gives you a taste.

Tiffany Reisz is such a talented writer and skilled storyteller to have captured a huge audience for The Original Sinners series. She is very effective in conveying emotions without being too dramatic or filling the page with sentimental fluff. In the scene where Eleanor's mother just gave up on her, I felt her panic and fear that she's now alone. There's intense chemistry between Eleanor and Søren, and just friendship vibes (at the moment, anyway) between Eleanor and Kingsley. I really don't like it when a main character has more chemistry with a supporting character than his/her love interest.

It's difficult to pinpoint exactly what is very compelling about this story, but I daresay most readers will just really be drawn to it. I can certainly see the appeal of the series, and I'm not just talking about the S&M themes or who Søren is. Guess it's in the way the author wrote it? It's one of those books that I just like to read, and the kind of story that makes me itch to know what's next.

The main reason why I gave it 5 stars is it does a great job of piquing the interest of newcomers to the series; and for those who have read the series, the book is a beautifully written installment that surely answered a lot of questions and gave them more insight into why Eleanor/Nora is who she is at present. My recommendation about the reading order aside, THE SAINT is wonderful as an introductory AND a follow-up book. I'll recommend it to newbies and series followers alike.


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.

Tiffany Reisz is the author of the highly acclaimed series The Original Sinners. Her first novel, THE SIREN, won the RT Editor's Choice Award for Best Erotic Romance of 2012. Slightly shameless, Tiffany dropped out of a conservative Southern seminary in order to pursue a career as a writer. This move, while possibly putting her eternal salvation in peril, has worked out better than she anticipated. She lives in Portland, Oregon with her boyfriend, author Andrew Shaffer.



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