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Original Sin by Beth McMullen
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Jul 12, 2011

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Read in July, 2011

I think the premise of Original Sin is really cool, and somehow the packaging feels like an ABC television show. You know the guy who does the voice-overs for the Castle previews? Well I can totally hear him saying, "Sin.Is.In."

Suburban housewife Lucy Parks Hamilton has a huge secret. She once was Agent 26, a.k.a Sally Sin for a covert government agency shooting this and hiding that. She was a big deal, and that’s why her former boss Simon wants her to come out of retirement to lure her former nemesis Ian Blackford out of hiding. He isn’t just another good-looking guy with fancy gadgets either. Problem is she retired for a reason…she got married and has a kid. She doesn’t want to fight the world she just wants to keep her son from biting the cat’s tail. But apparently Blackford knows where Lucy is and now fearing for her family she comes out of retirement to catch the guy.

Flashbacks were my big issue about this book. I get easily confused when there's an abundance of flashbacks. Seeing flashbacks in a movie can be annoying, but reading flashbacks can be downright irritating. Sometimes I couldn't tell whether Lucy was talking about the past or present. Also, if the purpose of these flashbacks were to establish how badass she was, we don’t really see it we just hear about it from others so that wasn't much fun. She was much cooler in the present. I guess the flashbacks were also there to establish the past relationship she had with Blackford so I won't harp on that too much.

Don’t get me wrong, I liked some things too. I enjoyed the subtle humor throughout. Like where Lucy basically tests the durability of a bed for her son by breaking her enemy on it, or when she sneaks up on her nanny to see if she is prepared for a break in. The relationships in her life are neat, like the tension between her and Ian, and the funny relationship and understanding she has with the baristas at her local coffee shop. I also enjoyed hating her boss Simon Still. Besides Lucy, it seems like the other characters all have some sort of hidden agenda and it’s not easy to decipher who’s good.

To me the book premise was like Alias meets Mr. & Mrs.Smith, minus her fighting her husband, and not that exciting.Once I got used to the constant flashbacks, I liked the book for what it was. It was a bit hokey, but you’re not supposed to take the book seriously. I think many people can relate to the protectiveness that Lucy feels for her family. Also I like how the ending was a surprise and leaves off for a second book. I would keep reading just so that I could hear about Ian Blackford again. I still think he’s a good guy on the run.
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