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BOOK REVIEW ~ THE VIRGIN BY TIFFANY REISZ

The controversial story before the story continues in the critically acclaimed and award-winning series The Original Sinners.
For years, Kingsley Edge warned Eleanor the day would come when she, the mistress of a well-respected Catholic priest, would have to run and hide. She always imagined if that day came she’d be running away with Søren. But instead, she’s running from him.
Knowing Søren and Kingsley will their use their influence to bring her back, Eleanor alone, penniless and scared takes refuge at the one place the men in her life cannot follow: the abbey where her mother has taken orders. Behind the cloistered gates of the convent, Eleanor hides from the man she loves and hates in equal measure
She cannot, however, hide from her true nature. When Eleanor befriends a young virginal nun, she faces a startling sexual awakening. But Eleanor can’t stay forever, and the lure of her real life beckons beyond the locked gates. But to follow her fate means to leave Kyrie behind, a sacrifice Eleanor refuses to make
The lure of the forbidden. The temptation to sin. The price of passion has never been higher, and Eleanor will have to pay it if she ever wants to go home again.

What can I say about Tiffany Reisz and her Original Sinners series that hasn’t been said before? There truly is no author like her and no other books – erotica or not – that can ever come close to the sheer brilliancy of her words. There’s a special kind of feeling that settles in my heart when I start a book by an author I adore, an author I can count on to never let me down, and Tiffany is cuffed tight on the top of that author list. So why the 4 stars? Let me just say first that everything about this series is flawless to me. If – and that’s a pretty big if – there was one thing in that flawlessness that I would harp about, it would be the weak emotional connection with some of these side characters, and the thing is, The Virgin largely focused on the relationships the main characters had with the side characters, so that weakness was magnified more in this book than in any other books in this series. Even so, I thoroughly enjoyed this story for its whip-smart writing, witty and sharp banter, and of course, the one-of-a-kind, unforgettable characters.
“You’re in a kilt and you’re not inside me. This is the worst day of my life.”
In present day, Nora, Soren, Kingsley, and the rest of the gang are in Scotland to attend a wedding. The nostalgic setting and a few confessions lead to a night of reminiscing of the past…to a particular year that was both a high and a low for the gang.
“It was a dark and stormy night…and I was leaving you. Forever.”
In short, Soren breaks Nora, Nora leaves Soren, and Kingsley leaves the both of them since he can’t cope. The story is then split into two – one that focuses on the time Nora spent hiding in a nunnery and the time where Kingsley finds his Juliette in Haiti.
“She was twenty-six years old.
She was the ex-lover of a Catholic priest.
Might as well go all in.
Goodbye men. Goodbye sex.
She headed west to her mother’s convent.”
Nora, Nora, Nora. Gah! No heroine has charmed me so completely nor frustrated me to the nth degree than this kinky, clever woman here. I get really bipolar when it comes to her. I’ll love her one moment, get annoyed with her in another. I guess the reason for that all boils down to my preconceived notions of what love is and how sex and intimacy plays a roll. It never ceases to amaze me and make my jaw drop when I read how easily this lady can slide into another man’s – or in this case, woman’s – bed. Like technically, I know how unconventional her relationship is with Soren, and then Kingsley, but for once I thought to myself, ‘couldn’t she show more restraint?’ LOL! Then again if she did, she wouldn’t be the Nora I’ve come to love so there’s that. Her eventual relationship with a young nun-to-be Kyrie didn’t really stir any emotions from me. It was important because I got to see how Nora became the writer she is in present day, but relationship-wise, the Nora-Kyrie pairing I could’ve done without. Still made for some fun, smoldering, sexy scenes though! 😉
“If you had all the money in the world and could use it to go anywhere you wanted, where would you go?
Everywhere. And then I’d go home.”
After leaving behind his kingdom and Nora and Soren behind, Kingsley travels everywhere and finally lands in Haiti just to have a great time. He doesn’t count on meeting the exotic Juliette who he becomes infatuated with, and eventually falls in love with. Now the connection here is one I really felt. Juliette and Kingsley have lots in common and in her, Kingsley sees his dream woman and his future.
“I like it rough.
Rough? On a scale of one to ten…
What’s one?
You fall asleep while I’m on top of you.
Ten?
Hospitalization.
Nine.”
There were a few problems getting in the way of them being together with Juliette’s history and the way those loose ends were wrapped up I wasn’t fond of – it was too easy. And while I liked Juliette I never really warmed up to her and the reason for that is the badass Sam from The King. Honestly? I miss the crap out of her. Her chemistry and relationship with Kingsley was 10 times stronger than shown here with him and Juliette and part of me felt sad that relationship would never manifest. But life moves on, and so does he, Nora, Soren, and the rest of the group.
The last portion of the book surprised me – my heart was leaping for joy when I found out whose wedding it was. And of course the story ended in true Nora Sutherlin fasion.
“Busy day ahead. Things to do. People to beat. A Dominatrix’s work was never done.”
There is a reason I rarely ever read pure erotica books and that’s because this series and Tiffany Reisz has officially ruined me for all other stories in this genre. The level of research, the depth and respect portrayed in the BDSM, the relationship complexity, the character dynamic…all that and much more makes it impossible for me to move on from and find another book in the same genre that could ever compare. I do feel guilty for rating such an outstanding book 4 stars but the complaints voiced throughout my review were sufficient enough I needed to dock a star. Even so, I can say that this book is still better than 90% of books I read nowadays…just to put things in perspective. There’s only one more book left in this entire series before it’s all over so you’ll have to excuse me while I go mourn <3