Wednesday, July 17, 2013

To Sin with a Viking by Michelle Willingham

I adore Michelle Willingham’s Viking and Irish historical romances! They’re sweet, sexy, intriguing, and I love being swept away to those ancient places in time. Her latest book, To Sin with a Viking gave me more of what I’ve come to love about her stories, but was disappointing in a major way.

In her introduction to the story the author says:
Author Note

Sometimes arranged marriages in historical romance end in happily-ever-after. And sometimes two good people are never meant to be together. I wanted to explore the idea of a marriage between a husband and a wife who want to make it work but are unable to connect. And what will happen to them when they meet their true soul mates?

This duet of books, beginning with To Sin with a Viking, explores that theme without trespassing into the realm of adultery. Both Styr and Elena Hardrata deserve a happy ending…but it will not be with each other...
The thing about this statement is that infidelity is not just a sexual betrayal of vows, infidelity can also be manifested through the heart and mind. Such is definitely the case with this story. While sexual intercourse doesn’t occur until after Styr is divorced, there are other physical, sexual, and emotional infidelities taking place between he and Caragh, and so I was horribly disappointed in them as people.

This is so out of the norm for this author, so by no stretch of the imagination am I thinking of giving up on Ms. Willingham’s stories. I have every intention of reading the next book, but I’d be lying if I said I enjoyed this one. In fact, it broke my heart. As brilliant as the characters are, as poignant as the story is, dishonoring ones vows, however it’s done, is as unacceptable to me in my romance reads as it is in real life.

Had there been zero infidelity, this would have easily been a 4 read, but I cannot, in good conscience, overlook what took place between Styr and Caragh and rate it more than 2 stars. That said, other reviewers have given this story 4 stars and higher, so please, if infidelity isn't an issue for you, read To Sin with a Viking. There's much to love about the story, so you'll probably enjoy it!

My thanks to Harlequin and Netgalley for providing me with a copy of this story in exchange for an honest review.   

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