Lord of Sin

Written by Madeline Hunter
Review by Carol McGrath

Madeline Hunter is not content to plumb the safe territory for the historical romance set in 1800s Great Britain. In addition to a great deal of amorous activity, she pushes the edge of polite society. In another one of her books, the protagonists engaged in extramarital relations. In Lord of Sin, the hot topic is erotic art. The new Earl of Lyndale, an “art” collector and rake by reputation, follows up on a last dying request and finds – a forger of bank notes as well as art prints, including racy drawings, in one of those chains of coincidence that make fiction seem slightly fantastic. This forger is, naturally, a gorgeous woman of independent spirit, engaged in the forgery to keep her estate afloat and help her Scottish country folk being chased off their land in the Highland Clearances. This gives plenty of opportunity for spinning a great deal of sexual tension and release, with the Earl’s modern attitudes leaning not to the debased exploitative material we now call pornography, but the exaltation of sexuality through art that is still appreciated, although still debated, today. If these topics are not to your taste, choose a different author, but the dialogue and intrigue are quite pleasing if you find the subject matter just another interesting plot element.