Tainted Love (Sweetest Taboo #2)

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4.00 · 1 ratings · Published: Mar 1st, 2013 {{ book.ratingTitle }}
“My name is Isabel Cruz, and I’m nineteen years old, almost twenty. I go to Lincoln University where I’m majoring in English. I’m a straight-A student, and I know what I’m doing with my life, but things weren’t always that way. Or rather, I’ve always known what I wanted, and it just hasn’t always gone along with society’s views. In high school, I had an affair with my swim coach. I wanted him, and I took what I wanted. We were together until I graduated, but he had a wife and kids, and I left him behind to come here. I left everything behind to come here. At least that’s what I thought.”

Isabel was never like the other girls at her school in the sleepy town of Hillside, California. At sixteen she fell in love with Tom, a married swim coach at Royal Oaks High School; their exhilarating and sultry affair continuing in secret for several years. Finally, Isabel realized that her own future had to come first, but even after relocating to Washington, D.C. to study at Lincoln University, she finds herself still wracked by guilt over jeopardizing the happiness and security of Tom’s young family. Now almost in her twenties and desperate to start a new chapter in her life, free from past controversies, Isabel will once again find that her beauty and precociousness will captivate another older man, this time a professor at her university. Confronted by this burgeoning affair, Isabel realizes just how deeply she still loves Tom and, in spite of the disapproval of her hometown community, her feelings become too strong to deny.

When Isabel returns to Hillside, reunited with Tom, she feels herself falling for him all over again, only this time with the tantalizing promise that things could really work out for them, especially since she is no longer the naive teen she used to be. But all is not as it seems; Isabel begins to hear rumors about Tom’s involvement with other girls at Royal Oaks High. Quickly this salacious gossip leaks to the local media and the authorities begin to investigate the claims. Only then does the true gravity of Isabel’s misguided choices begin to profoundly affect those around her and threaten to derail her life completely.

Tainted Love is the thrilling follow up to Sweetest Taboo by Eva Marquez, and rejoins Isabel Cruz as she tries to put her complex and forbidden romance with Tom behind her. Written from the perspectives of both Isabel and Tom, the irrational and desperate love they share is brought to vivid life by Marquez. Inspired by the conviction of one of her former high school teachers for sexual misconduct with a minor, it addresses a poignant modern taboo, one that is becoming increasingly common in the US, with unnerving insight and precision. Tainted Love is a must read for young adults, their parents and all fans of romantic fiction.

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