Review: The Angel by Tiffany Reisz

The Angel (The Original Sinners, #2)

The Angel by Tiffany Reisz (The Original Sinners #2)
Erotic BDSM Romance
Releases: September 25, 2012
Harlequin

Reviewed by Mandi

My Favorite Quote: “My confession begins,” Father S said, “as the confessions of many men begin – with three words.”

“Father, forgive me?” Michael hazarded a guess.

Father S sighed. “I met Eleanor.”

A few months ago I read The Siren and at that point it was my favorite book so far this year. I found the writing to be so engaging and refreshing. The emotions and pain, both physically and mentally the characters endured in that book broke me. It stretched my boundaries. I think the dialogue and character development is some of the best I’ve read. I also was horrified at underage sex and a Catholic Priest taking in a 15 year old girl and teaching her to submit. I say all this, because now book two is out. I convinced myself it would not live up to The Siren. I was sure of it. The Siren was so amazing, I honestly thought the sequel would fail. I was wrong.

I’m not going to rehash the events or characters we meet in The Siren. In order to understand The Angel, you must read book one. They completely build upon each other. So if you read this and are lost, go read The Siren and then come back.

The Angel starts about a year after The Siren ends. Eleanor/Nora is back with Søren. Wesley has left to go back home. We learn a little more about Wesley in this book, and oh boy. I think book three will bring about very interesting revelations with him. Michael is still going strong, crushing on Nora like any 17 year old boy can. Life is somewhat stable for everyone, until Søren gets word that he is on the short list to become the next bishop of the diocese. Søren does not want this promotion. Being priest of his church, he has privacy. He is able to meet with Nora and live his Dom lifestyle, without gossip or prying eyes. He needs to work it out so he is not chosen for this honor. On top of this, a reporter by the name of Suzanne gets an anonymous tip that Søren could have a conflict of interest regarding being a priest and getting chosen for bishop. Suzanne’s brother, in his twenties committed suicide because he was abused by a priest when younger. When Suzanne hears, ‘conflict of interest,’ she immediately assumes Søren must be abusing children, and goes on a crusade to uncover every detail about him. Obviously, Søren taking in Nora when she was 15, is not going to look great to Suzanne if she ever discovered this fact.

Søren, calm as ever, sends Nora and Michael to Griffin’s country estate in upstate New York as he and Kingsley stay back and try to deal with the whirlwind Suzanne brings in.

At Griffin’s, Nora is sad to be away from her beloved Søren for the summer, and Michael is shy and awkward, yet very excited as he prepares to be trained as a submissive under Nora’s guidance. Nora and Griffin of course are ready for fun together too.

We learn so much in this book, but I hesitate to give anything away. Where is the fun in that? This book has a little bit of a lighter tone to it. Griffin has a butler that seriously made me laugh out loud. Although Nora is sad to be away from Søren, she has a very fun and flirty (and sexual) relationship with Griffin. I adore Griffin. He became one of my favorite characters in this book. He has a surprising relationship with someone that blew me away. It was pretty perfect.

We get to know Michael too. He is ‘The Angel.’ as Nora lovingly calls him. He has a lot of page time in this book and while in The Siren he was a 15 year old getting his virginity taken by Nora, in this book he is a 17 year old ready to learn the BDSM lifestyle. Griffin and Nora take him under their wings and many scenes with him made me smile.

Things aren’t all happy though – I mean come on, this is Tiffany Reisz. She has to give us pain. (I’ll also say there are a few scenes with Søren and Nora at the beginning that stretched my bdsm boundaries yet again!) In this book we dive deep into Søren’s past. We learn about his childhood, and it is dark. Very, very dark. The kind of dark that makes you curl up into the fetal position and not feel so good. But, and this is a big but – the author had to give Søren a past like this. It was vital to make us understand his extreme sadist ways in the present day. After I read The Siren, I didn’t like Søren. I think I wrote that in my review. He scared me. I didn’t understand him or why he acted or treated Nora the way he did. After The Angel, I love him. I can see him as a human being now, not just some weird guy who beats Nora to a pulp. I totally understand his love for her and her love for him. And, at the end of this book, my heart cracked a little for Søren. And now I must have book three to see how everything plays out.

We also have the new character of Suzanne in this book. I’ll be honest and say at first she felt out of place, I didn’t understand her character or why she was in the book. It felt, almost like she was filler. But she has a great role in this book. Once she started interacting with Søren, I got it. She made sense and I really enjoyed her journey in this book.

Finally, Kingsley. Oh Kingsley. Apparently we get more of his story in book three. We learn a few big revelations about Kingsley and Søren in this book and I can’t wait to learn more about it all in book three.

I think this book is so incredible for many reasons. Tiffany Reisz writes such well-rounded, engaging, conflicted, flawed characters. They jump off the page and are so realistic and fulfilling, that there isn’t one moment or word that goes by that doesn’t feel right. She pushes boundaries. A lot of boundaries. But there is never a scene that goes by that feel like it is only in there for shock value. Each scene has a purpose in this story, and she weaves them together so well, that at the end of the book, you just sit back and shake your head.

She really is a master at telling a story and lucky for us, she has more stories to tell. Bring on The Prince.

Rating: A

Recent Reviews:
Spunkybean – 5/5
Under the Covers – 5/5
Rise of the Slush
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Comments

  1. Ashley says

    I loved The Siren which I read because of your recommendation. I’m about 24 hours away from huge anatomy exam so I have to study today instead being able to get started on The Angel (torture I tell you, TORTURE!) but I will be diving in as soon as possible tomorrow. I’m so glad to hear it’s as good as The Siren…can’t wait :)

  2. says

    I was told that The Prince has a lot of buttsecks as in man lurve galore! WOOT.

    This book tore me apart, made me smile had me aching…. How can I be so into Soren when everything about him is so very wrong?

  3. mzcue says

    Me too. I loved it. And I had the same misgivings, thinking that the sequel couldn’t possibly live up to The Siren. Delighted to discover how wrong I was. Though Wesley’s diminished presence in The Angel made me miss the interaction between him and Nora, it makes sense as the plot unfolds.

    What I liked so much about The Siren was how fresh it seemed compared to other books. The Angel is similarly original, but distinctly different from the feel of the first story. There are many more answers given to things that were left hanging before. Decidedly more humor. Lots of tantalizing longing, as well as delicious gratification. Reisz is a superb craftsperson and the steamy passages are off the charts.

    I became fonder of all the characters in the second book. Michael’s age had made me very uncomfortable, but it helped to understand his excruciating situation. (Very satisfyingly addressed in the second book!) Griffin had seemed more annoying in the first story, and Søren was too remote to appreciate. I had to take him on faith (punny, eh?) since Nora adored him so much. All three grew on me with The Angel.

    Reisz is the kind of writer who creates books that leave you with that stranded feeling when you have to go back to real life. Her world is so vivid and satisfying that everyday feels sadly humdrum. But that’s actually a measure of her skill, and why readers crave her work. Delicious!

    • Mandi says

      Agree – ‘fonder’ is a good word to use. I think I understood everyone better in this book. Their motives, their vulnerabilities. Just felt really well-rounded. Dying for The Prince. I hear we go back and see Soren as a teenager. *bites lip*

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