Perfect Sin
by Kat Martin, historical (2000)
St Martin's, $6.99, ISBN 0-312-97564-3


Even a half-hearted attempt at carrying an Indiana-Jones-on-tropicana-vacation adventure later in the story cannot save Kat Martin's latest rehash of romance stereotypes, Perfect Sin, from being yet another comfy armchair read. Nothing substantial, but just good enough to pass the time.

Rand Clayton, the Duke of Beldon, wants to catch his cousin's murderer. His suspect: an American archaelogist trying to drum up financial support among the London academia for an expedition to Santo Amaro Island. Unfortunately, the daughter Cait catches his fancy. He decides to woo her to get close to Daddy, but things get sticky when he gets too attracted for his own good. Put in a long-lost fabled necklace of Cleopatra and someone trying to kill everybody and we are all off on a usual ho-ho-hum adventure.

Is there any doubt that Cait and her father are innocent? Is there any doubt that she won't find out about his suspicions until after the boinking? Add in the usual suspects - an ooh, I made you jealous when I am in dark corner with another gentlemen, an oh, you're compromisin' me, hon, and a final half of an Indiana Jones and The Temple of Doom adventure with ten times the cheese. Well, I must admit the first half is a totally unexciting, predictable exercise in deja vu, while the second half, pretty silly and cheesy at first, gets dull and repetitious after a while.

Even wild, flailing sex under palm trees under moonlight or something like that can't sustain my interest for long. Boinking on sand? Sounds mighty uncomfortable. And don't start with the painful bumps on coconut tree barks against one's - uhm - actively moving body. Just the thought of it sounds painful.

But hey, at least there's coitus al fresco among all the usual Regency standards this book conforms to heavily.

Rating: 71


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