Friday, August 24, 2012

Scandalous by Ella Steele

Millionaire Jack Gray earned his fortune creating erotic art for a discerning clientele. He doesn’t use a brush to depict these hauntingly beautiful portraits—he uses bare skin. A sterling reputation is the only thing standing between Jack and poverty as he skirts the thin line between fine art and cheap sensationalism. To ensure that his character remains beyond reproach, an assistant observes his sessions. While interviewing for a new assistant, Jack hears her voice—Abby Tyndale—the girl who got away. The last time Jack saw her was over a decade ago. After years of romantic tension she had nearly kissed him, but then disappeared without a trace. He hasn’t seen her since. Until now. When he learns that his lost love joined the clergy after she fled to West Texas, his heart sinks. She’s forbidden, forever set apart by her vows. Jack’s life quickly spins out of control as Abby grows closer to him, and worsens when his client list is stolen. The financial blow alone is damning, but it’s the scandal brewing beneath the surface that he fears the most. Jack and Abby’s livelihoods rely on their reputations. A single scandal will destroy them both. While fearing a contrived scandal, they have courted a very real one as their romance reignites.

Initial Thoughts:
The cover was beautiful. I hadn't seen a cover like that ever before. Also, the aspect of Abby being "clergy" was oddly interesting.

The Pros:
I had never read a romance novel involving a nun. This was new. And intriguing.

The art aspect in this book was really interesting to me. As a former (and sometimes current) artist, I really liked the way they described Jack's process of creating his art. Also, the fine line between what is considered pornographic and art is explored in this novel.

Abby deals with her past, present, and future when all of it collides when she returns to NYC. After initially balking at the idea of that, she faces it head on.

The reason why Abby was forced to take a "sabbatical" is amazing. I loved it. 

The Cons:
I felt like the novel moved too fast. The author could have turned this into a really great love story if she would have just taken her time.

Typos. You guys know how I feel about those.

The ending? Confusing. Rushed. Not well thought out.

Jack wasn't described well enough to be considered a true romance heartthrob.

The Wrap Up: 3/5
Decent, quick romance read. If you're looking for in depth romance, you won't find it here. But this is a great beach read.

Favorite Quote:
"Before I could speak, a voice came from the shadow at the end of the room. "So that's where you went? Texas." That voice. It made my stomach flip. My body was instantly covered in goosebumps, every hair standing on end. Something inside my chest ached when he spoke. Although I hadn't heard it in years, I recognized his warm playful tone instantly. I'd know him anywhere."

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