Sinful Purity

The Sinful Series Book 1

Young Adult - Action
306 Pages
Reviewed on 09/19/2013
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Firmly ensconced in the business world, I have a Masters in Business Administration, and SPHR certification. The business world has been good to me, although my passions lie with the written word. I wrote poetry from a small age and dabbled with short stories. I always dreamed of writing a novel. With the idea for Sinful Purity that
dream became a reality.
A native of Southern California I enjoy sunny days, and palm trees year around. I live with my husband and teenage son along with a very friendly Bloodhound and two mini Dachshund brothers. My son who has tried everything from the drums and guitar to football and drag racing can frequently be found written in to my books.
I am an avid reader, sometimes reading several books a week. My kindle acts as my security blanket as I have been known to sleep with it. It goes everywhere with me just in case I can sneak in a quick read. When I'm writing my purse is usually crammed with
notebooks and scraps of paper with ideas and dialogue written all over them. Post-it notes overtake my house. I have been known to run out in the middle of a conversation when the muse strikes.
I appreciate all your support and love hearing from fans. A fan myself I try to reply to all your comments and questions. Thanks for reading.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Bil Howard for Readers' Favorite

Sinful Purity by K. A. Standen, is a coming-of-age story of a young girl, Mary Elizabeth (Liz), who was orphaned at the age of four and placed under the care of Mary Immaculate Queen Orphanage. Not having remembered anything of her life before the age of four, her identity was wrapped up within the walls of the “prison” of the orphanage and the nearby St. Matthew’s church. Along with a friend, Kelly, they begin to dream of a life outside the walls and iron gate. Kelly’s brother Bart even helps feed Liz's dream by sneaking “unauthorized” reading material to her. When Liz finally escapes the iron gate of MIQ to go to college, she is still shackled by its spiritual bonds. With the help of two good friends, Caleb and Lucy, and the unfailing love of Zack, the love of her life, she begins to see what life outside the physical and spiritual constraints of MIQ and St. Matthew's is really like. She has to fight not only the forces of the institution, but her own inner demons in order to hold onto her new found freedom as she grows to discover her true identity.

In Sinful Purity, K. A. Standen expertly contrasts the issues of bondage and freedom on two different levels: the institutional and the inner spiritual. It is a story filled with deep inner tension as Liz works her way out of the darkness of hidden childhood and into the light of freedom. The plot is thoughtful and well-developed and the reader will feel the inner conflict and tension that grips Liz. It is almost impossible to put this book down as the reader pursues each of the suspenseful twists and turns which Liz faces as she unravels the identity that lies beneath. This is a thought provoking masterpiece which will serve the reader well as it questions the deeper truths of bondage and freedom. An honest book. Highly recommended reading.

Lorena Sanqui

Sinful Purity by K.A. Standen is the story of Mary Elizabeth, a girl who grew up an orphan in Mary Immaculate Queen orphanage. She was raised a devout Catholic and lives her life by its rules. So when she went to college she experienced some culture shocks. On her first day, she was mowed down by the track team’s star athlete, Zack, who later became her boyfriend. She also met friends who helped her adjust to her new life in college. Her life seems to be good and in order, with the love of her life alongside her and great friends who help her however they can. Everything is great until a tragedy rocks Liz’s life. Now will she have to confront the very same people who have taken care of her when she didn't have a family and solve the puzzles about the things that are happening around her ... or just let it all go?

When I first started reading Sinful Purity I thought it was going to be a simple and straightforward book. There were friendships and college, there was love and romance. The usual in young adult or new adult books. But then there was religion, conspiracy, betrayal, and murder. And I thought this is definitely better than all the YA books I have read so far. It was amazing the way K.A. Standen told the story of Liz and her life in and after the orphanage. This is definitely a 5 star book. I’m kind of sad with the way it ended; good thing Liz’s story will continue in Sinful Relations.

Jack Magnus

Sinful Purity is Book One in K.A. Standen's Young Adult coming-of-age series, The Sinful Series. It's the story of Mary Elizabeth Queen, a young woman who was brought to Mary Immaculate Queen, a Catholic orphanage in Chicago, as a four-year old child. Life was strict and Liz's world was very small, its confines being the orphanage itself and St. Matthew's Church across the way. Liz was an angry and outspoken child, convinced that her real family was coming to take her away, but doomed to spend many hours waiting to be disciplined by the Mother Superior, Sister Christine. Life briefly becomes a brighter place when Kelly, newly orphaned, becomes her roommate, and Brett, Kelly's dishy brother, becomes her friend. When Liz finally graduates from high school, she's allowed to attend college on a church scholarship, albeit with constant supervision by Sister Christine and Father Brennigan, who's been Liz's special friend and confessor for many years.

K.A. Standen's Young Adult thriller Sinful Purity is a fast-paced and exciting read. This is a coming-of-age novel that will keep you glued to the page and wondering what will happen next. The prologue clues you to the fact that bad things happen, but, throughout the story, it's clear that life in the orphanage is stifling and dehumanizing. I winced reading Liz's tortured responses to Brett's attention and later her college friends' overtures, and smiled as her life seemed to get on track in the best of all possible ways. While this is listed as a Young Adult book, I think that adult readers who enjoy thrillers or mysteries will enjoy Sinful Purity as much as I did.

Lit Amri

“That child, that child. She is wilful to a fault. Must keep a close eye on her.” Mary Immaculate Queen Orphanage used to be Mary Elizabeth’s home. For all intents and purposes, she had spent nearly all her rigid life there since she was four years old. Wilful or not, she waits for the chance to break free – and she does. Yet freedom has a price and her past still haunts her wherever she goes. The first installment of the Sinful Series, Sinful Purity is a dark coming-of-age story by K.A. Standen.

In terms of suspense and mystery, Sinful Purity hits the ground running. I was transfixed, starting from the story’s prologue itself. Walking in a cold and rainy night, the protagonist’s emotional and bloodied physical pain expressed through the haunting and beautiful prose swiftly evoked my curiosity. What happened? The fascination was instant and I was eager to start chapter one. Coupled with the right amount of angst, romance, and even humor, it definitely gives a great boost to the well-developed characters, especially Mary Elizabeth, better known as Liz. Yet there is a great twist to the story and although life outside the orphanage is beautiful, certain individuals from her past are keen to keep her on leash.

From start to finish, the plot keeps me on the edge, as K.A. Standen keeps it tight, leaving no room for me to guess in advance about what will come next. I do wonder how sensitive some readers would be with the way some characters, who are members of the Catholic Church, are portrayed. However, by the time the story comes to an end, with far greater power than it started, Standen has done the work of showing the readers how a great story can still linger in one’s mind and will not be easily forgotten.

Samantha Rivera

Mary Immaculate Queen Orphanage and St. Matthew’s church have a lot of secrets that they are determined to hide. The orphans they take in always seem to get adopted and not only that, but they always seem obedient and oh so perfect. Is the church just blessed with obedient and moral children or is something more sinister at play behind the way these children act? For Mary Elizabeth, the church is all she’s ever known until she turns 17 and is granted the chance to go to college. Except she’s not going away to college and, in fact, she’ll be required to continue attending the church she grew up in. Sinful Purity will keep you guessing from the start.

Mary Elizabeth has never liked her life at Mary Immaculate Queen Orphanage and, when she’s given a chance to explore the world outside by attending university, she’s thrilled. I loved the way that Mary Elizabeth (or Liz as her friends call her) seemed to grow and change as she met new people and had new experiences. It was amazing to see her and Zack become such an amazing and loving couple. I couldn’t help but absolutely adore them and feel so connected to their story. Anyone who reads Standen’s book will be completely caught up in everything that happens. I can guarantee there are plenty of twists and turns throughout this story that you definitely won’t see coming. I couldn’t get enough of Sinful Purity and just couldn’t seem to put it down.