Absolution by E.M. Leya and Nicole Colville is book 2 of the Sinful Temptation Collection. While you can read this story as a standalone, you really should read Horizontal Analysis first to really meet a few of the other characters. I received one copy of this book at no charge in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own and this pots contains affiliate links.
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Absolution by E.M. Leya and Nicole Colville
Purchase Link: Amazon
Series: Sinful Temptation Collection #2
Authors: E.M. Leya and Nicole Colville
Publisher: E.L. Publishing; 1 edition (April 10, 2015)
Format/Length: 3480 KB/425 pages
Genre: M/M, Contemporary
Heat Rating: 3
Star Rating: 4 1/2
For most of his adult life, Jon dedicated his life to the church, finding solace in helping others, but there has always been something missing. Up until now, he’s been able to push that aside and move forward, letting everyone think he’s happy and doing what he loves.
Ash doesn’t want to continue with life. Left behind to live a cold and empty life after his partner died in a tragic accident, he doesn’t see any future for himself. He goes through the motions of living, but inside he’s ready to give up. All that’s left behind is the anger and hurt he has inside him.
Finding comfort in each others company, the two men struggle with emotions, guilt and fears about the future. Confiding only in each other, they grow closer, both denying the bond building between them, and a past that won’t let them move on.
John entered the priesthood 10 years ago but lately feels like there is something missing in his life. His faith is strong, he loves the church and his congregation, and he loves what he does on a day to day basis. He can’t quite put a finger on what is not quite right with his life.
Ash is ready to give up on life after losing his partner of 7 years only a few months ago. He is angry and hurt and just doesn’t want to live life without his one true love.
The two meet at Zach and Killian’s wedding and John is instantly drawn to Ash. He feels a need to help him overcome his sorrow and learn to cope with his grief. Ash is more than willing to help John work on a church photography project but that is where his ambition ends. He will not discuss his late partner, his grief, his past or anything that would be deemed ’emotional’.
Absolution is incredibly well written and watching these two men open up to each other and bond with each other truly touched my heart. John’s physical attraction to Ash starts early but he knew he was gay…that wasn’t a surprise. What shocks him is that he feels anything at all. Putting aside his physical needs for the priesthood was not difficult for him…over the years he had no interest in anyone physically. I was a little worried about how the sexual nature of their relationship would be handled but the authors did a spectacular job. There are a few kisses, some solo fantasies..but that’s it for much of the book. When John finally realizes that he wants to leave the church, they begin exploring the physical side of their relationship. I think I might have preferred it wait until John was completely gone from that life but they at least waited til the paperwork was started.
I don’t think there is anything in this book that was at all offensive to my ‘religious’ leanings. I loved that John was accepting of homosexuality despite traditional beliefs of the church and he was an all around wonderful character. Very thought provoking idea of a gay priest who firmly believes that love is love!
Ash’s pain was devastating and it really grabbed me right from the page. Seeing how close he was to giving up was heart breaking and his refusal to discuss his partner’s loss with anyone had me very frustrated with him. As he and John became closer and closer, I couldn’t believe he didn’t realize that he had fallen in love with John.
Things I loved about Absolution: The sexual tension is off the charts so when they do get together things are incredibly hot! The emotions truly shine through in this story. John’s need for MORE out of his life, Ash’s pain over losing his partner, the love that develops slowly over time…those emotions are practically palpable in this book. The ending made me cry. Yes, sometimes a good cry at the end of a book is a positive thing!
Things I think might need a bit of work: There were a few editing errors. Not horribly written type errors but general typos. Enough that I noticed them but they didn’t interfere in my enjoyment of the book. I also think it was really a tad TOO long. John and Ash talk quite a bit about their feelings. That’s a good thing but I think maybe it went on a bit too long.
Overall, Absolution by E.M. Leya and Nicole Colville was a fabulous and very moving romance!