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Between Sinners and Saints

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4.15  ·  Rating details ·  3,839 Ratings  ·  465 Reviews
Levi Binder is a Miami bartender who cares about only two things: sex and surfing. Ostracized by his Mormon family for his homosexuality, Levi is determined to live his life his own way, but everything changes when he meets massage therapist Jaime Marshall.

Jaime is used to being alone. Haunted by the horrors of his past, his only friend is his faithful dog, Dolly. He has n
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ebook, 377 pages
Published May 29th 2011 by Amber Allure Press (first published May 21st 2011)
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Amy Lane
Jun 02, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I grew up in a Mormon town and watched painfully as one of my best friends dealt with both the wonderful support and the painful doctrine after her parents divorced. Her struggle to choose the interpretation of her faith that felt right in her heart always struck me as poignant and real--and when reading this book, I saw Levi go through the exact same struggle. I loved that Marie Sexton didn't treat this lightly--I loved that she found both the good and painful in Levi's family dynamic. I loved ...more
Heidi Cullinan
May 28, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I have a Thing about books revolving around abuse. In theory I like to read them, but they're so often poorly done, and a poorly done abuse book is a terrible, terrible thing. The balance is as delicate as a spider's web. It can't be too angsty, but it can't be too glib. Most authors think the way to deal with abuse is for the character to wallow directly, which I have to tell you, I've never seen a real abuse victim do in real life. The stories are also often so heavy you can't stand to read th ...more
julio
Jun 01, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: no
not one, but two examples of unhelpful stereotypes of sexually abused persons used for facile romance-trope angsting.

PEACE-OUT, HOMIE

*returns, 5 minutes later, filled with righteous fury*

let's just call it my trigger.

abused, raped, dub-conned-to-hell gay dudes who may or may not seek healing in the form of being whipped, chained, gang-banged, or choked the fuck out.

that's my trigger.

because while this world is enormous, and there are all kinds of people out there, and definitely people who fit a
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J *deep in the heart of Texas*
4.5 Stars!

This one was good. Really good.

A bit on the heavier side. And a bit religious-y.

Definitely a slow build, but I thought it was completely appropriate.

Not a lot of steam, but enough.

A tad on the long side, but I was never bored.

There you have it in a nutshell.

Recommended read for sure!

Cole Riann
4.5 stars

I really enjoyed this book. I like reading slow and sweet love stories, and this definitely fit the bill, due to Jaime's history. Even more (though they often infuriated me), I enjoyed Levi's family. I think it was very smart of Marie Sexton to let this story run the course it did. Now that I think back on it, there isn't one book I remember reading right now in this genre that doesn't offer a complete resolution for coming out (even though Levi is already out) that isn't either complet
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Ingela
4 Stars for a very nice and tender story about life, family, acceptance, fear, attraction, the wounds of abuse and to love unconditionally

This was another very fine and sweet story from Ms. Sexton ~ she is becoming a new favorite. I really like her a bit more diverse and somewhat damaged characters, they are so much more than just two MC in a love story. They make my heart sore and I almost hit a knot in myself in my desire for their happiness and HEA.

Levi's and Jamie's story is wonderfully bea
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Gigi
Aug 10, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This was my second read and I LOVED it all over again. I never wrote a review the first time, so here is a quick review for the second read:

Seriously? If there is anyone out there that hasn't read this, STOP EVERYTHING RIGHT NOW.



Just stop. Pick up this hurt/healing/comfort gem and start it RIGHT. The. Fuck. Now.



I don't know what else to say that hasn't been said. One damaged "broken" character, another recently redeemed, strong, emotionally supportive character.



Perfection.

Shelley
Between Sinner’s and Saints is warm and tender; often light and fluffy with the added intensity of an age old argument. A token of sinful sex and just enough of the saintly kind to get the heart rate going, all mixed together to create a surprisingly enjoyable read.


After reading a rather noxious and amateurish m/f romance, this book was a balm for my temper head, heart and soul. The writing flows, there are no dubious characterisations, everything adds up, it’s believable and void of insta - a
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Ariana
Sep 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
*4,5 stars*

Wow. That was really intriguing.
At the centre of the book is an in-depth look at how Mormons might look upon homosexuality and 'its lifestyle'. And no, some of these views are not what I expected (while others were)
There are church doctrines, but then there are deep family values and a lot of love, too. But also blissful ignorance of some people in Levi's family that someone gay will remain gay, whatever. Despite yearlong efforts to 'change' him.

The final discussion was exceedingly t
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Wave
May 27, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I didn’t think that Marie Sexton could top One More Soldier, a book I love and have re-read many times, but Between Sinners and Saints showed me a different side of her writing and proved once again what an incredible writer she is. The plot and characters moved me so much that I couldn’t put this novel down.

The protagonists will grab on to your heart especially Jaime who was vulnerable and scarred from his past experience. He was a complex character who was so fragile it seemed as if he would
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Lauraadriana
4.5 mayyyybe 4.75

Love is selfless, patient, open and forgiving. I think this story was about that more than anything for me. Levi comes from the LDS church he left his family years ago to live in Miami where he could be free to live how he chose, and he did he surfed, tended bar, had a lot of sex...That was life. After having pain in his back he goes to massage therapist Jamie Marshall for some help. Jamie is attractive, but closed off and shy and looks almost scared all the time he does not lik
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Heather C
Such a sad, heartbreaking story with a HEA

I've been putting this off since the release because I was freaked out by the religion, abused MC, and the slutty MC. So yesterday I finally started it because I wanted to read something where I could really connect with and feel for the characters. And this was exactly what I was looking for.

First, there is Jamie, who spends his days healing people with his touch and his nights locking himself away and hiding from his inner monsters. He was abused as a
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Breann
Aug 11, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Breann by: Paisley
Levi meets Jamie, his massage therapist, at a time in his life when all he cares about is his next conquest. So what does he do? Hit on Jamie, naturally. We learn pretty early on that Jamie has a deeply troubled past and still has emotional scars that causes him to have fear of being touched. When Levi comes on too strong Jamie is completely put off and wants nothing to do with the other man. Levi is able to finagle his way back into Jamie’s life but with a very strict ‘no touchy, no feely’ rule ...more
Kaje Harper
Apr 17, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This book did a wonderful job of bringing together Levi, the guy who had a hundred meaningless encounters and Jaime, the guy who was traumatized and trying hard to make a life he could handle. Their relationship built in a totally believable way. I loved the MC's, loved the pace of the relationship, and Levi's family dynamics. Jaime's background and issues were given such a realistic depth and pace, and Levi's realizations of how he felt about Jaime were sweet. There were a few misunderstandings ...more
Ami
4.5 stars
This story proves once again that Marie Sexton is a wonderful author. She tackles some heavy subjects: rape/pedophilia, depression, faith/religion, and penance, woven with the concept of love and family (and one of the "oldest" argument about homosexuality: is it a sin when it's also love?), into one well-written and thoughtful novel.

It's a story of opposites attract: Levi Binder, the playboy bartender with Mormon family, and Jaime Marshall, the innocent therapist with painful past. It'
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Sylvie
Jun 05, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: m-m
3.5 stars rounded down

Let me start by saying I love Marie Sexton - she's a must-read, auto-buy author for me. As much as I love her brand of m/m, there are certain themes and elements in the story that bothered me. I thought the religion aspect was way too overblown, to the extent that I felt like I was reading a sermon and joined in on a recruitment camp. Sexton might have done it altruistically, with no intent to push the religion. Perhaps she wanted to expound on the misconceptions others hav
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Christina
Aug 29, 2011 rated it really liked it
This was a solid 4.5 stars pushing 5, up until the very last couple of chapters. Grrr....
Even so, I still really enjoyed this book.

I connected to the characters instantly. I think the author did a very good job in dealing with Jaime's past. I felt every bit of his turmoil without it being OTT. On the other hand, the religious aspects of the story got a bit preachy and heavy-handed. Plus, most of Levi's family were sanctimonious and I always felt like Levi was getting attacked. Their disapproval
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Nichole (DirrtyH)
May 17, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: m-m, 2011
This book deals with some heavy stuff but handles it really well. I liked but didn't love the characters, but the way Marie handled the heavy stuff, particularly the religious angle, was so good it bumped a 4 star book up to 5.

Having never experienced sexual abuse I can't speak to that aspect, really, but having grown up Mormon I can say that this is by far the most complete, the most accurate and the most compassionate portrayal of the Mormon faith I have ever come across in gay fiction. Not th
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Mark
Aug 25, 2012 rated it it was amazing
A truly beautiful and extremely stirring story. Sensitively written with a depth of emotion, character and understanding that is guaranteed to pull at the heart strings. Loved this book. It was my first book from Marie Sexton. It'll definitely not be my last.
Kassa
Jun 07, 2011 rated it liked it
3.5 stars

Between Saints and Sinners shines in many ways; the skillful handling of abuse and PTSD, the inclusion of a very sticky subject in religion and theology, difficult and absentee families, and a complicated relationship. This book could have gone horribly wrong but Sexton is a great writer and kept the subjects complicated yet not overwhelming. None of the characters are perfect or evil but show various shades of grey. They have intolerance yet also an ability to learn and change. Althou
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Karlijn
May 29, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Karlijn by: Susan
What can I say? I'm so glad Susan tipped me this book. Holy hell, this was a beautiful story!

From the moment I started I was hooked!

Why?
- Levi. From the beginning it was obvious that he had so much feelings, but tried to 'silenced' them with sex and his job. But it was so much more. He was hurt. Hurt from the past, but also hurting from the present day. Through the story you see him growing, feeling and loving.

- Jaime. When I read about his OCD, it was like I saw myself. His obsessions are simi
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Dee Wy
Jun 26, 2011 rated it it was amazing
If an author can give me a story with characters who can grow and change when life hands them challenges and opportunities, then this is a story I know I will love. Between Sinners and Saints has character growth in abundance.

Levi's family has insisted that his gay lifestyle is a sin according to their Mormon faith, and consequently he has distanced himself from a family he truly loves and misses. Jaime is haunted by an abusive past, unable to ever feel safe or allow others to touch him. When Ja
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Andersón.
Jan 31, 2016 rated it liked it
3.5
I think you want very much to make this black and white—to make us all out to be sinners or saints. But it’s just not that simple. I think what you need to accept is that, just maybe, we’re all something else. Maybe we’re all something in between.

My second book of Marie Sexton i really like this writer

The book start really strong for me but sometimes they were parts that just bored me, but in general i like it, i think i never be so interested in a religion like the mormons, but this family g
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Td
Jul 31, 2011 rated it it was ok
This is totally my fault. With this title and blurb, I should've know better. Anything too religion heavy and my eyes glaze and I usually shut down. Maybe that's why things went over my head and I didn't understand. I felt Levi's family was downright emotionally abusive, beating the guy down every chance they got in the name of religion and to me they never even came close to redeeming themselves. Just about everything from that angle grated on my nerves. Not even the relationship between Levi a ...more
Vio
May 30, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: m-m
A well written story that dragged a bit in places and was a tad too long. I thought Jamie was the best MC, he was so sweet and I wanted him to be happy. Levi, I wasn't to sure about and the chemistry didn't feel right between them, maybe my expectations were to high.
Susan
Mar 25, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I've re-read this so many times... I'm loving it more every time I read it.

This is not a book about pain, family problems and being afraid. This is a book about healing, family and love. It was absolutely beautiful.

Although the subjects handled in this book were heavy, this book made me feel warm inside.
It really is a book about healing and loving. The problems Levi has with his family are not about hurting each other, but about loving each other this much to try to overcome major differences.
An
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T.J.
Feb 05, 2012 rated it it was amazing
My first Marie Sexton Book.

Holy amazeballs. If the rest of her work is of this caliber, I may need to download everything she has ever written ever. Gorgeous, gorgeous work.
Nikyta *Miss Forgetful*
I've enjoyed most of Ms. Sexton's stories. I think she's a great writer. For this book, however, I can't exactly say I loved it but I liked it to a certain extent. If I could, I'd rate the first half a two and the second half a four. As it is, I'm going neutral with a three.

I will say the relationship Levi and Jaime create is great. I enjoyed the way they built up being friends then gradually escalated to lovers. I felt like their love was genuine, it's touching but heartbreaking because of the
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BWT (Belen)
Belens Audio Book Review

I thought John Solo did a really good job with the narration - conveying the situations presented and narrating the different character voices. I enjoyed the narration and wouldn't mind picking up other stories narrated by him.

What I liked most:
~ I loved this is a hurt/comfort story that deals with some really heavy subject matters.
~ I loved the story is told from both Levi and Jamie's POV.
~ I loved Jamie and the way Sexton handles Jamie's past trauma, the aftermath, and, ultimately, his healing
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Fabi
Aug 08, 2016 rated it it was ok
Shelves: kindle, mm, published-2011
I'm still a little in shock at how much I disliked this book. Most/all of my GR friends who read it rated it 5 stars. So it's obviously my own hangups that didn't allow me to enjoy the story. I had a few major issues with it and lots of little issues with it. I'm going to keep this review short by only listing the major issues I had reading it.

MI#1
Narrow-minded, holier-than-thou bigots make my blood boil. Couch them in religious fervor that aims to "change you" to "save you" because we "love you
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Unavailable at Amazon? 5 60 Aug 22, 2013 02:16PM  
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Marie Sexton lives in Colorado. She’s a fan of just about anything that involves muscular young men piling on top of each other. In particular, she loves the Denver Broncos and enjoys going to the games with her husband. Her imaginary friends often tag along. Marie has one daughter, two cats, and one dog, all of whom seem bent on destroying what remains of her sanity. She loves them anyway.

Coda: W
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More about Marie Sexton...
“just because it offends you doesn't mean it violates your rights. You don't have a right to not be offended” 9 likes
“Church doctrine has no place in secular law. You can't take away people's rights to meet your own religious criteria.” 8 likes
More quotes…