The Witch of Painted Sorrows by M.J. Rose

the-witch-of-painted-sorrows“Possession. Power. Passion. New York Times bestselling novelist M. J. Rose creates her most provocative and magical spellbinder yet in this gothic novel set against the lavish spectacle of 1890s Belle Époque Paris.

Sandrine Salome flees New York for her grandmother’s Paris mansion to escape her dangerous husband, but what she finds there is even more menacing. The house, famous for its lavish art collection and elegant salons, is mysteriously closed up. Although her grandmother insists it’s dangerous for Sandrine to visit, she defies her and meets Julien Duplessi, a mesmerizing young architect. Together they explore the hidden night world of Paris, the forbidden occult underground and Sandrine’s deepest desires.

Among the bohemians and the demi-monde, Sandrine discovers her erotic nature as a lover and painter. Then darker influences threaten—her cold and cruel husband is tracking her down and something sinister is taking hold, changing Sandrine, altering her. She’s become possessed by La Lune: A witch, a legend, and a sixteenth-century courtesan, who opens up her life to a darkness that may become a gift or a curse.

This is Sandrine’s “wild night of the soul,” her odyssey in the magnificent city of Paris, of art, love, and witchery.” – Goodreads

Taking a turn away from her Reincarnationist series of the last few years, M.J. Rose has turned out a haunting new standalone novel for 2015: The Witch of Painted Sorrows. Staking her claim – once again – as one of the masters of romantic suspense, Rose weaves together romance, the supernatural and occult, and a dash of eroticism to create a sinister and spicy tale of love and fear in 1890’s Paris.

After the death of her father – for which she blames her own cold and cruel husband – Sandrine Salome flees in secrecy to Paris, seeking refuge with her beloved grandmother. She arrives, however, to find that many changes have taken place in her grandmother’s world – and that not all will be as she had expected. As she investigates, Sandrine embarks on a journey of self-discovery that will mercilessly thrust her into the world of occult-ridden Belle Epoque Paris. Experiencing changes she never expected, Sandrine begins having thoughts and urges that aren’t her own. But where are these unsettling feelings coming from? Things become more and more clear as she delves deeper into her family history and moves forward into a future of independence and power.

I don’t want to share too many details of the novel here; it would be easy to tell you the whole stinking story in just a few sentences. You’ll need to experience that for yourself, if you choose. As a fan of Rose’s Jac L’Etoile novels, I was familiar with her writing style and The Witch of Painted Sorrows did hold my interest as I read it, however, it’s not really  my style. I’m not really a “romance” or “supernatural” fan and don’t see myself turning into one anytime soon. That said, it is rumored that this novel is the first in a series, and if this is true then there is a good chance I’d read the next one to be published (I’m nothing if not thorough, y’all).

Oh, yes, I mentioned that this novel is somewhat erotic… Um, yeah. There is sex. Graphic sex. This is not my thing. I’m a total prude (let’s not even talk about when my BFF made me read the Fifty Shades trilogy). Not that I don’t approve, or that I think it’s inappropriate in any way – there’s nothing wrong with it at all; sex scenes just gross me out. They didn’t used to; it started a little over ten years ago. No idea why. I just cringe and gag and skip over the pages to the next part. Maybe it’s a Mom thing…? So… FYI, y’all. Be prepared.

Would I buy this book? Not for myself – but I would purchase it for a friend who was into the genre. Totally worth your time if this is your thang. Go and get you some!

The Witch of Painted Sorrows by M.J. Rose: On Sale Now!

3 stars

Source: Atria Books {via NetGalley}

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