THE NAUGHTY SINS OF A SAINT by Tiana Laveen
Description: When Saint, a dynamic, Egyptian-Asian motivational speaker meets Xenia, a popular radio show host, it’s chemistry at first sight. But can this couple clear a whole bunch of hurdles, including their often clashing strong wills, Saint’s mystical roots, Xenia’s disapproving family, and Saint’s many enemies?
The Dilemma: I’m at a lost as to how to give this novel a proper review, and I don’t even know how I’d figure out how to give it any kind of letter grade. It’s an epic, polarizing book, and it has many qualities that people will either love or hate. For example…
Saint: Saint is a fascinating hero, an engaging speaker who keeps it real and speaks his mind. Even if you don’t agree with what he has to say, you’ll pay attention. And you’re either going to love or hate the many long speeches he has throughout the book.
Xenia: This heroine is hood and crass. You’ll either find her refreshing or dislike her instantly.
Tone: The tone of the book is extremely didactic. Fans of IR blogs that preach against dating black men will love it, others might find is severely preachy and off-putting.
Structure: The structure of this novel is very episodic with an overarching thread. After you’re done, you’ll feel like you’ve watched a whole season of a night time drama.
Length: The book is really long. Readers will either feel like they got their $7.99’s worth, or that it’s going on and on.
The Good: This is a truly unique hero — trust, you have never encountered a character like Saint in an IR romance. I loved that both characters — not just the hero — had sexual histories. The sex scenes are balls to the wall, very intense, with nothing left on the table. They’re also, strangely enough, pretty instructional. So if you’re looking for tips…
The Bad: Craft issues abound: There’s egregious head hopping. Ms. Laveen habitually uses five or more sentences of dialogue to express what could be said in two. Characters often tell each other things they already know, making for really clumsy exposition.
The Naughty: Erotic. Really explicit sex. Really explicit language (ex. “Sit up for a minute and watch me tongue fuck you.”). Period sex. Anal sex.
Editing issues: Head hopping.
Length: 334 pages
Final Grade: n/a
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Theodora Taylor writes and reviews interracial romance novels in Pittsburgh, PA.