Salem, MA 1692
On a moonless night, he rides into the winter forest on his beast as black as midnight…
Dashing stranger, Henry Dunham, comes to Salem on a mysterious errand, but is thrown from his horse in the dead of night and rescued by the local Puritan midwife, Lydia Colson.
Haunted by her past, Lydia is running from her own dark secrets, avoiding intrusive questions by pretending her dead husband is simply… away. But when she and Henry are caught in a compromising situation, one punishable by Puritan law, he saves her from scandal by claiming to be her errant spouse… and claiming her bed.
Forced to fake a marriage, Lydia and Henry find their passion overwhelming and their vows a little too real. As their lies become truths, a witch hunt closes in on Lydia, threatening not only their burgeoning love, but her life.
Sarah and her husband of what he calls “many long, long years” live on the mid-Atlantic coast with their six young children, all of whom are perfectly adorable when they’re asleep.
She never dreamed of becoming an author, but as a homeschooling mom, she often jokes she writes fiction because if she wants anyone to listen to her, she has to make them up. (As it turns out, her characters aren’t much better than the kids).
When not buried under piles of laundry, she may be found adrift in the Atlantic (preferably on a boat) or seeking that ever-elusive perfect writing spot where not even the kids can find her.
She loves creating unforgettable stories while putting her characters through an unkind amount of torture—a hobby that has nothing to do with living with six children. (Really.) Though she adores nail-biting mystery and edge-of-your-seat thrillers, Sarah writes in many genres including contemporary and ghostly paranormal romance.
I haven’t read many historical romances and, after reading Her Wicked Sin, I’ve discovered that I’ve really been missing out. It was written in an old fashion style that gave it real credence and felt like I was reading a new classic, rather than a straight modern historical romance novel (I know, how many oxymorons can I get into this post!)
I decided to read it because it was set amidst the Salem Witch trials and it really did capture the tension and fear that must have been felt at that time. Poor Lydia, the protagonist, seems dogged with bad fortune and terrible timing. Worst of all, she’s beautiful in a time when plainness is considered Godly. The Puritan odds are certainly stacked against her, which makes for a romance with a hearty string of tension.
I’ve always had a strange fascination with this time period, which all started when I read The Crucible at school. Her Wicked Sin feels almost like an extension of Arthur Miller’s work and proves how easy it was back then to get into trouble and be accused of something that could literally take your life. All it took was a jealous wife or a wicked child with a grudge with the ear of the town.
The romance is sweet, albeit a little predictable – but hey, that’s okay; in a modern world where romance is like a half-finished roller-coaster, sometimes it’s nice to have a bit of predictability.
The front cover really doesn’t do the book justice and personally I’d have liked to have seen some more markers to show the time period – although a half-naked chiselled man is always a crowd pleaser!
Overall I’d give Her Wicked Sin 4 out of 5 stars – whether you’re a seasoned historical romance junkie or a newbie like myself – read this book.