Pros: Languid, searing, mesmerizing
Cons: Too hot for some
Rating: 5 out of 5
Museum curator Mandy Cooper is obsessed with an old tale—that of nineteenth century bohemian artist Catherine Burke, and her rumored lover, Atacar, a Native American warrior. She’s the caretaker of Catherine’s greatest work, a portrait of Atacar that hangs in the museum she works at. What she really wants to find, however, is Catherine’s rumored journal.
Mandy’s also having an affair with Jared Cabrillo, Atacar’s great-great-nephew and a well-known playboy into serial monogamy. Mandy’s a good girl raised with proper manners, but Jared awakens the bad girl inside of her. She knows she should just enjoy their fling while it lasts as he’ll inevitably move on, but it’s hard not to get attached to someone who seems to so easily read her soul—and her desires.
Jared, however, is keeping a secret. He has Catherine’s journal, and he’s every bit as obsessed with its contents as Mandy is. He even finds himself mimicking Atacar’s courtship of Catherine in his relationship with Mandy. After a while, however, he finds it hard to separate his own feelings from Atacar’s—and he’s desperately unwilling to fall in love with anyone.
Cherie Feather’s The Art of Desire is a highly unusual tale of seduction, desire, and love. It moves back and forth between passages from Catherine’s journal and Mandy & Jared’s lives. Part of what makes it so incredibly different is its languid, mesmerizing pace.
Mandy & Jared are fantastic characters, neither as simple as their public images suggest. They’re fresh and appealing, highly erotic, with plenty of explosive chemistry. Jared is Mandy’s addiction, and Mandy is Jared’s obsession. He drives her to try ever wilder and crazier things with him, pushing the boundaries of her experience and comfort. Meanwhile, Atacar and Catherine’s story is both tragic and sweet. So many fascinating details from the past come into play (such as the ‘language of flowers’), but they’re woven into the tale so beautifully that not a single one feels like a lesson.
The Art of Desire is a creamy liqueur that goes down smooth and heats you up you from the inside out. It’s seamlessly seductive, erotically steamy, and deeply romantic. It might not be what you expect, but it’s almost certain to be what you desire!