Monday, 29 June 2015

Priest: A Love Story by Sierra Simone - ARC review and giveaway details


There are many rules a priest can't break.

A priest cannot marry. A priest cannot abandon his flock. A priest cannot forsake his God.

I've always been good at following rules.

Until she came.

My name is Tyler Anselm Bell. I'm twenty-nine years old. Six months ago, I broke my vow of celibacy on the altar of my own church, and God help me, I would do it again.

I am a priest and this is my confession.

***Priest is a standalone, full-length novel with an HEA. For mature audiences only.***


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Kristine's Review:

Reviewed: June 2015.
"Whatever happens after this, I just want you to know that this was worth it. You were worth it. You were worth everything."

 In all honesty I'm not even sure where to begin with this book, the hype surrounding it was, is monumental, the taboo nature of the novel ensured this would be a book that readers would talk about, a Priest and a parishioner mixed up in a tawdry affair, how could it not be dark and dirty? I was expecting smut at it's best here, after all I do enjoy a bit of story less filth every now and again, but I must admit I was pleasantly surprised by Sierra Simone's work, yes it's dirty and sexy and let's face it, smutastic, but there's also a story here, a good one, one that draws you in, one that grabs you and makes you feel for these characters.
Priest is told entirely from Father Bell's point of view, he's lived a life full of both joy and heartache, he didn't grow up wanting a life of servitude , rather after suffering through that would leave most broken and devoid of faith Tyler found meaning and purpose in doing the Lord's work, he wasn't a Saint, wasn't without sin, but he found a way to deal with the tragedy he had faced and was able to do work that alleviated some of the crushing pain and grief.
Poppy Danforth was groomed to be the perfect stepford wife, perfect breeding, wealth, academic excellence, intelligent, but despite having the world laid at her feet, she was hollow, without passion, she was destined for a life of working until she married someone her equal in business and breeding, until she had the picture perfect 2.5 children, where she would spend her days overseeing charitable donations surrounded by other stepford wives and more than likely a house of staff that would ever mitigate her being truly involved in her children's lives. Her life was constant charade, playing the role of the dutiful daughter until she would take on the role of the dutiful wife.
There's no denying that the chemisty between Father Bell and Poppy was cataclysmic, from the moment they meet separated by a confessional booth, there's an instant recognition of their souls, both running from a painful pasts, both hiding from something, both trying to live their lives the best they know how, there's this blinding soul deep connection that leaps off the page, you feel the sheer agony of wanting something you know you can't have, and  ultimately loving something so deeply at the cost of losing everything you've built your life around, due to the taboo nature of this story, we know with absolute clarity that a Priest and a parishioner can not have a secret relationship forever, but what makes this story so addictive is that Father Bell nor Poppy are not purely dominated by their physical urges, despite their initial attraction to one another, the connection that grows between them, the pure love they feel leaves the reader in no doubt the agony they experience trying to reconcile just how much their relationship could cost them both.
This is my first Sierra Simone novel, it's filthy and hot and naughty in all the ways I wanted, the taboo nature of the story had me literally bending over backwards to get a copy of this to review, Priest is so much more than I expected, there's a beautiful fragility to both Tyler and Poppy, a sense of two people fighting their way out of the darkness, surrendering themselves to a higher power, a deeper connection, one that is greater than lust, more than purely intimacy, one that fights the numbness that threatened to drown Poppy and the unresolved grief that was swallowing Tyler, one that allowed them to want more than they thought possible. If you are easily offended Priest may ruffle a few feathers, but beneath the hype, and the taboo concept is a book that with stay with me long after I turned the last page.

About Sierra Simone:

Sierra Simone is a former librarian who spent too much time reading romance novels at the information desk. She lives with her husband and family in Kansas City.

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Signed paperback of Priest & $20 amazon gift voucher

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