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4.4 out of 5 stars63
4.4 out of 5 stars
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on 23 August 1998
In March of 1997, I asked readers of Nora Roberts & Patricia Cornwell to convince me which author's stories I should try next. I was convinced to try Nora -- with a little nudge from Nora (she posts on boards on AOL). Nora suggested that I pick up a couple of her titles from used bookstores and see if I liked them or not.
My first read was SACRED SINS. Now, a year and a half later, my life has completely changed -- all due to reading this WINNER and meeting Nora & her wonderful, wonderful fans (w/them, we created a website in Nora's honor!).
I digress.
Why should you read SACRED SINS? When I first read it, I could NOT put it down. I wanted to not only read about the developing relationship between Ben & Tess, but I also wanted to find out who was killing these women in Washington, D.C. My initial impression was that it was a good, fast read.
Then, in June, I re-read it. It was even BETTER the second time around. In fact, I put it right up there as my favorite romantic/suspense stories of Nora's -- with DIVINE EVIL, MONTANA SKY, CARNAL INNOCENCE, & her DEATH books.
Why is SACRED SINS such a great read? First, you have a very believable killer. Second, you have real cops in Ben & in Ed (read BRAZEN VIRTUE for Ed's story) -- their rapport is outstanding. Third, you have a very true-to-heart developing relationship between Tess & Ben. Fourth, Tess is extremely convincing as a psychiatrist. Her attempts to reach Joey were so compelling -- I wanted to reach into the book & slap his parents -- this was as real as it gets. Nora wrenched my heart w/it.
This is an excellent story to give to a NON-reader of romances -- who believes that he/she knows what romances are all about. While there is romance in this story, the emphasis is on the suspense -- wondering who the killer really is.
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on 14 January 2005
Firstly, I'm a real crime/thriller nut! I am constantly having to hunt down new (at least to me) authors who write engaging, fast-paced series. Having read everything by Lisa Gardner, Michael Connelley, Patricia Cornwell and Kathy Reiches - to name a few - I needed another fix! Bless her heart Nora Roberts filled the void perfectly.
Sacred Sins is the first (at least I think it is) in a series of novels that feature Tess Court, an emotionally attached psychologist, and Ben Paris, a hard-headed womanising police sergeant. Inevitably, a new relationship is born and flourishes before our very eyes. I do feel that this relationship was a little wobbly and could have been portrayed differently, but I'm still looking forward to reading more about the couple.
The main storyline is an "against the clock" struggle to find a killer who murders their victims with an amice (a scarf-like item worn by catholic priests). Paris simply wants to track the down the nut and put him/her away for good. Tess Court is convinced this person needs help and is killing to absolve an underlying problem.
Sparks fly between the two professionals, but who will win?
I was honestly hooked from the very beginning. Unlike with some of the other series I read through necessity, Sacred Sins gave me something slightly different to think about. I didn't find the killer obvious at all until about 4 pages from the big reveal! Maybe I'm just not detective material, but I personally think the murderer was well concealed throughout.
The ending was a little quick for my liking, but it certainly didn't taint my general feeling for the book or Nora Roberts. I can't imagine why I've not heard of her before now! She easily gives some of the top names a run for their money.
Looking at some of the other reviews on Sacred Sins, I think you'll either love it or hate it - simple as that. I'd recommend it to all crime/thriller readers and just hope that they can enjoy it half as much as I did!
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on 18 August 2006
This was a very good 'whodunnit' as the conclusion was kept well hidden and the pace didn't let up throughout. The 'professionals' in the text were well scripted and believable and the general plotline was very well crafted.

Has definately tempted me to try her other titles...
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on 18 December 2012
Oh dear. This was my first Nora Roberts book and it will be my last. I found the plot rather thin, the characters had no depth and the budding romance rather cringeworthy. The details regarding police work and psychology were rather thin on the ground- this was a poorly researched book. All in all, it was very tedious and I am surprised Nora Roberts sells so many books!
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on 15 February 2006
I can't think of one book I haven't liked of Nora Roberts. Once you start you can't put them down. I had no idea "who dun' it" until the reveal at the end of the book. Once you've read this book , you have to read Brazen Virtue, which is a follow on from Sacred Sins.
You can't argue the fact that she is a brilliant writer and I am proud to say I am on my way to having every book she's ever written. If you like her style, try the ".....In Death" series written under JD Robb. I've read them all individually, then gone back and read them in sequence.
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on 30 January 2013
Nothing like the J D Robb we know and love. I was looking forward to reading this book. Think this was written a very long time ago with references to Bogart and Vincent Price. Will be going back to Eve Dallas for sure next time.
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on 17 April 2012
As usual Nora Roberts has done it again, another book you can't put down once started, this lady is a genius...
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on 15 May 2013
Most of Nora's books grab hold and i can't put them down this one didn't.
Weak characters and plot line
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on 22 August 2014
I really enjoyed this book, but I only gave it 4 stars because I felt that some of the more complex psychological discussions between the main character and the consultant priest slowed the story down a bit too much. However, I will continue to be a huge fan of Ms Roberts books.
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on 24 April 2014
I thoroughly enjoyed this book it was up with the best of her books, even knowing the outcome it still had some twists to the story . I would recommend this book to other Nora Roberts fans.
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