REVIEW: 'The Sinful Life of Lucy Burns' by Elizabeth Leiknes

The Sinful Life of Lucy BurnsTHE SINFUL LIFE OF LUCY BURNS by Elizabeth Leiknes is a morality tale mixed with social satire that speaks of the power of words, thoughts and deeds. The heroine, Lucy Burns, narrates the story and she doesn’t waste time catching readers up. No. You’re pretty much sucked into Lucy’s extraordinary life and what a life it is.

Lucy Burns hates her job. She’s a facilitator for the Boss down below. Yeah, Him. She’s responsible for guiding sinners to meet their early demise. A weary task. Working for the devil does have it’s perks – ageless beauty and immortality – but Lucy’s had enough.

By addressing a letter to “Whom This May Concern” at age 11, Lucy asks that her sister Ellen’s life be spared after she was seriously injured in a car accident. In exchange for her sister’s life, Lucy finds herself misled and ensnared into a life of servitude that comes with a no strings attached type relationships.

Well, Lucy wants her life back. She learns there’s a loophole where the level of difficulty proves to be a test of faith. In between corralling sinners and leading them to her basement, Lucy falls in love. Her love interest, Luke Marshall, is sexy as hell. No pun intended. He’s a professor of Creative Writing who is also – blind. With that said, I will leave the rest of the plot details unsaid.

THE SINFUL LIFE OF LUCY BURNS was a lot of fun to read. Admittedly, it took awhile for me to get oriented because like I said, the story doesn’t catch you up until a bit later. But I was hooked into the story once it got going. Not being a fan of flashbacks, they were well done in here and as someone else said, they are cleverly used in the story and not heavy handed at all.

There’s a lot of social and cultural satire in here which led to a lot of laugh out loud moments. This book was FUN for lack of a better description. Like a breath of fresh air type of fun. I’m grateful to have had the opportunity to read this book and hope others will do the same. This book is very readable.

No book is ever perfect. I had some issues starting with Lucy’s non-blase attitude about the lives she was condemning to Hell but when seen from a different perspective, hey, she’s been doing this job for years. I wanted more romance but this is not a romance novel. So you see, my criticisms have more to do with me than with the writing per se.

The author’s voice/style especially her humor – worked for me, because it’s hard to make me laugh.

Love has always been the strongest motivator. It made Orpheus gaze at and subsequently destroy Eurydice. It made Bonnie aid and abet Clyde. Actually, that’s a bad example – she liked shooting people as much as he did. It made Whitney [Houston] believe in Bobby [Brown’s] prerogatives. It made Hillary avoid castrating Bill -oops, another bad example.

Highly recommend THE SINFUL LIFE OF LUCY BURNS if your looking for a really good story to sink yourself into. The narrative voice drew me in almost immediately and I really liked Lucy despite her flaws. I won’t go into too much detail about the themes of the novel but as you can imagine it is about the balance of good and evil, sacrifice and redemption. This was just a really good story all around. My grade, B+. Well done.

Additional Note: This book is available in ebook via Kindle format and in hardcover.

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About Keishon

Voracious reader of just about everything.
This entry was posted in Book Reviews, Fiction, Grade B Reviews and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to REVIEW: 'The Sinful Life of Lucy Burns' by Elizabeth Leiknes

  1. Popin says:

    I read this one awhile back and agree with you. This was a very fun novel.

    ~ Popin

  2. Robin says:

    I especially like your plot summary – it does great justice to the whimsy and cleverness of the book, IMO.

    I gave the book the same grade as you did and was so pleasantly surprised at how much I liked it. What I liked best, I think, was the density of the world Leiknes creates, from Teddy Nightingale to the competing Hitler and Jesus films. It was such rich worldbuilding for such a short book.

    And I cannot even remember how many times I laughed out loud, but I know it was a lot.

  3. SarahT says:

    I’ve put this one on my list for when it’s released in paperback. It sounds different, but in a good way. Thanks for the review!

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