AUTHOR: EVIE HUNTER
Details: no. 3 Pleasures
Received from Penguin
Blurb, taken from the back cover:
“Passion must have it’s way
When Sinead O’Sullivan is charged with stealing the Fire of Autumn - a dazzling ruby with a notorious history - investigator Niall Moore is hired to stop her fleeing and to find the jewel. Though Sinead needs to convince Niall of her innocence, telling him everything she knows will expose secrets she is desperate to keep hidden.
Sinead and Niall may not trust each other an inch, but they find it impossible to ignore the fierce carnal heat between them. Niall an expert interrogator, uses every trick of the trade - and every weapon in his erotic armoury - to get at the truth. Sinead, a fast learner, counters his every move with one of her own. Thief and thief-taker fight for dominance and there can only be one winner.
But what happens in their red-hot game of cat and mouse when criminals chasing the precious jewel come after Sinead...and the stakes become deadly?”
The books in this series are, for lack of a better word, great fun. Evie Hunter - a partnership of two Irish authors - has managed to find the perfect balance between suspense and sexy. What’s even better the author manages to integrate these two aspects of the story in a very satisfactory and unputdownable manner.
In this, the third ‘Pleasures’, title we meet Sinead who has been leading a double life to finance her way through college. When she’s offered a job in a museum in Zurich she abandons her alter ego - Lottie, a burlesque dancer - and embraces the more serious life she’s worked so hard to achieve. Sinead has only been working in the museum for a short while when a precious ruby is stolen and she is the main and only suspect. Security camera footage clearly shows her stealing the ‘Fire of Autumn’ and leaving the museum with it. With proof as obvious as this, nobody is likely to believe Sinead’s claims that she is innocent.
Enter Niall Moore, owner of Moore Enterprises, a security firm. Initially he is hired by the Zurich museum to recover the stolen ruby which seems easy enough since the thief and her whereabouts are known. Things get more complicated when Sinead’s uncle, Tim O’Sullivan, also hires Niall to keep an eye on his niece and help her. The situation becomes near impossible when Niall meets Sinead and discovers there is an instant attraction between himself and the museum curator who may appear to be boring and plain but soon discloses her adventurous side as well as her well hidden beauty.
What follows in an adventure in which Sinead is so desperate to hang on to the secret of her double life that other things she tells Niall are dismissed as lies as well. These two characters shouldn’t be getting on at all but find themselves unable to keep their hands off each other. Add to that an American operative known for his cruelty and violence and you find yourself reading a book that doesn’t contain a single boring moment.
Did I mention that this book is sexy? Trust me it is. Niall is a Dominant who has long ago resigned himself to the fact that he won’t ever find a woman who could put up with his demands.
“He wanted an equal, and had never found one. Until now. Until Sinead.”
While Sinead, despite her history as a burlesque dancer, has relatively little experience when it comes to men and sex. When these two characters get together it turns into an instant and very heated battle for power.
There were two things I particularly liked when it came to the kinky scenes in this book. The first is that Sinead and Niall’s quest for the Ruby demands that the pair of them attend a fetish party where Niall will have to pretend to be Sinead’s slave. And while Sinead, thanks to her burlesque past, has no problems portraying “she who holds the whip”, having to submit nearly kills Niall. It made for a wonderful and very exciting scene.
The second thing that really impressed me is that this book has a realistic approach to the familiar ‘experienced Dom meets new sub’ story-line. Most if not all of the books I’ve read with a similar story-line feature Dom’s who are either geniuses or mind-readers. They never seem to demand anything of their novice that they can’t or won’t do. I loved that Niall did run into Sinead’s boundaries when they first started, and respected them. A rather refreshing approach which did a lot to make the story more believable.
As far as I know there is one more ‘Pleasures’ title to come: The Pleasures of Spring, which is due to be released next April. I’ve got a feeling this title will feature Andy and I hope that we will also get to see more of Roisin. Regardless of whether or not that will be the case, I’ll be looking forward to reading the book when it comes out.