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5.0 out of 5 stars Lynsay an another wonderful tale!!!
This tale is a delightful fresh gem....from the opening pages that finds the sensible, but somehow always in odd situations, Maggie dressed as the famous Madam X balanced precarious on the window ledge outside a Baudy House, she can little know her climbing back inside will be witnessed by her brother's friend, James.
See Maggie's brother died at the battle of...
Published on Nov. 8 2002 by Deborah MacGillivray

versus
2.0 out of 5 stars not as good as her earlier books
I love this author but i didn't like this book very much. I was so looking forward to it that I bought it 4 months before it came out. I have always enjoyed the humor and wonderful writting style of Lynsay Sands but this book lacked that humor and style. I did find it somewhat funny in a few random scenes. And i will admit that the love scenes are hot but the plot didn't...
Published on April 26 2002 by Brenda Condit


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4.0 out of 5 stars A case of mistaken identity leads to love, March 31 2003
By 
K. Newman "krazykmcd" (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Reluctant Reformer (Mass Market Paperback)
Lady Margaret Wentworth's brother Gerald was unfortunately killed during the war, leaving Maggie to care for his London house and the servants that are dependant on her for a living. There is little cash in her inheritance, so Maggie does the scandalous thing of earning a living - continuing the writing career that her brother started. Before the opening of the book she has disguised herself to, for example, investigate a gentleman's gambling club to write about, something that would horrify society if they suspected who G W Clark really was. Now Maggie is investigating a brothel, conducting interviews in the very brothel housing the infamous 'Lady X'.
Lord Ramsey was a good friend of Gerald - in fact Gerald died saving his life. James had promised Gerald to watch over his sister. To live up to that vow, James employed an investigator on his return - an investigator who identified Maggie as Lady X. Now James is determined to save Maggie from herself, and on the very night she next travels to the brothel, James kidnaps her and takes Maggie to his estate. The issue of mistaken identity is resolved about half way through the book and Maggie returns to London, soon followed by James, but now it appears that someone is trying to harm her...
Sands has a definite feel for comic situations. From the kidnap to the talking at cross purposes that goes on for days between James and Maggie, to Maggies attempt at escape, to the events that seem destined to happen whenever they go into a library, the talented Sands is able to infuse a lighthearted element even into moments of danger or stress. And in this case it even carries across to the love life of the two central characters - right up to the very last page.
The eccentric servants, the brothel owner, James' aunt and his best friend Robert all make excellent secondary characters. I'm sure all readers of romance would enjoy this lively example.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Lynsay an another wonderful tale!!!, Nov. 8 2002
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This review is from: The Reluctant Reformer (Mass Market Paperback)
This tale is a delightful fresh gem....from the opening pages that finds the sensible, but somehow always in odd situations, Maggie dressed as the famous Madam X balanced precarious on the window ledge outside a Baudy House, she can little know her climbing back inside will be witnessed by her brother's friend, James.
See Maggie's brother died at the battle of Waterloo saving James' life, and as he lie dying in James' arms, he extracted a promise that James would protect and take care of Maggie.
Maggie has found herself in a difficult situation of the family money passing on to the heir, leaving her with a huge London townhouse and a large staff of servants she cannot turn away....so she is forced to moonlight to keep everyone fed and housed.
James is sure she is the famous Madam X, and woman of great allure and the current rage of the males of the Ton...and he is going to reform her and starts by kidnapping Maggie....for her own good, mind you!!
It is one mad comedy of errors and one delightful read.
WISE WRITERS AND READERS Book of the Month for February 2002
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5.0 out of 5 stars Always a Winner!, April 17 2002
By 
M. Rondeau (West Springfield, MA United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Reluctant Reformer (Mass Market Paperback)
One thing you must say for Lynsay Sands - ANything she writes generally has outrageously funny dialog and this one scores a 10!
Talk about a comedy of errors - or should we say a breakdown of communication.
Since her brother Gerald died and left her property without the proper funds to maintain, Lady Margaret must find a way to support herself and old family retainers that she cannot let go of. She assumes her brothers pen name and begins to write articles for a local newspaper. Now everyone knows that a certain amount of research must go int these articles, so donning a plethora of disguises, Lady Margaret has gone into a number of places no 'Lady' should be seen in.
Enter, Lord James, who is alive because her brother took the bullet intended for him. On his deathbed, James promised Gerald to look after his sweet innocent sister. To find this sweet innocent sister in the bordello - dressed as Lady X - well he just had to save her!
This was one terrific read! I don't see where anyone who reads this will not absolutely burst out into gales of laughter! This is an outstanding book by an outstanding author. All her books are keepers - especially this one!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Wonderfully appealing characters, March 25 2002
This review is from: The Reluctant Reformer (Mass Market Paperback)
Lady Margaret Wentworth would be the first to agree she's unconventional. Improper behavior is but a necessary tool of her trade. When her brother Gerald died in the War, Maggie found herself responsible for his town house and servants (family retainers, all). Despite the financial strain, Maggie could hardly put them out into the streets. Hence, her current predicament: teetering on the window ledge of a well-known brothel while trying to make her escape. Having exchanged her gown for a flimsy creation of see-through lace -- on the request of one of Madame Dubarry's girls -- Maggie is in something of a pickle.
To complicate matters, Lord James Ramsey is on a quest to save Maggie from herself. Recently returned from the War, James is surprised to find Gerald's virtuous sister romping around in a brothel. His deathbed promise to Gerald (a compatriot in the War and a very dear friend) to look out for the girl is tested by the newly acquired knowledge that Maggie is Lady X, a masked courtesan the ton is all agog over. His source is quite reliable, and finding Maggie similarly garbed in Madame Dubarry's brothel is all the proof James needs of her sordid profession. He has no choice, then. He must kidnap Maggie and teach the sassy bit of baggage how to comport herself like a true lady -- and provide her with an alternate source of income into the bargain. Reforming Gerald's sister will be a difficult task, however.
Although charming, the episodic blunderings of Maggie are familiar fare to readers of Ms. Sands. Once again, a heroine behaves precipitously by visiting brothels, dressing in breeches and snubbing all thought of convention. "Only you, Maggie," becomes a familiar refrain throughout as the aforementioned heroine bungles her way into one tidy mess after another. James is also a fairly common hero; he denies the existence of love until the very last possible moment. Love makes a man vulnerable, after all, and it's a bloody uncomfortable sensation. Such striking similarities to Ms. Sands' previous offerings dampened this reviewer's enjoyment of THE RELUCTANT REFORMER somewhat, but never extinguished the fire fully, if you will.
A thin storyline enables the growth of strong characterizations (as Maggie and James's interactions are the sole focus of this novel -- until Maggie's life is endangered, that is). Their lusty encounters are heated and tempestuous, but also a source of great humor. Untimely interruptions force Maggie and James to duck and cover, so to speak. They're never quite quick enough, though. It's also refreshing to have a plot revolving around the heroine's reformation from a woman of lusty appetites to a lady of refinement. Of course, it's all a misunderstanding on James's part. Good intentions have ever been a man's downfall.
Modern sentimentality may jerk a reader back to the present from time to time. However, THE RELUCTANT REFORMER is an historical romance that feels authentic for the most part. Ms. Sands is a writer of wit, wryness and wonderfully appealing characters. If she doesn't reform your reading tastes and bring an ear-splitting grin to your lips, well, you're sadly lacking a sense of humor, dear reader. Ms. Sands' backlist will no doubt cure you of that.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Another big score for Lynsay Sands, March 17 2002
This review is from: The Reluctant Reformer (Mass Market Paperback)
Not much of a review writer, but I am the male half of the team that runs WISE Writers and Readers at MSN. And we picked this book at the Book of the Month for February 2002. And I must say it earns it.
I have been a fan of Lynsay Sands since reading Lady Pirate, and with each book only grow more an ardent admirer of her writings.
The book was simply a great read. Her characters are funny, but not stupid. I really hate when writers force their characters to do stupid things just to further the plot. Lynsay never resorts to this. Her characters often end up in really hysterical situations, but it because it happens in the natural flow. She never insults the reader with sappy,paperdoll characters, but gives you living breathing people that you truly 'See'. She is in a class by herself, and I note many writers trying to imitate her lately. There is only one Lynsay.
When I pick up her book I know I am going to smile, laugh out loud and come away knowing I enjoyed myself to the fullest!!
Thank you, Lynsay!!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Lynsay proves she is THE writer to watch!!!, March 5 2002
By 
This review is from: The Reluctant Reformer (Mass Market Paperback)
This tale is a delightful fresh gem....from the opening pages that finds the sensible, but somehow always in odd situations, Maggie dressed as the famous Madam X balanced precarious on the window ledge outside a Baudy House, she can little know her climbing back inside will be witnessed by her brother's friend, James.
See Maggie's brother died at the battle of Waterloo saving James' life, and as he lie dying in James' arms, he extracted a promise that James would protect and take care of Maggie.
Maggie has found herself in a difficult situation of the family money passing on to the heir, leaving her with a huge London townhouse and a large staff of servants she cannot turn away....so she is forced to moonlight to keep everyone fed and housed.
James is sure she is the famous Madam X, and woman of great allure and the current rage of the males of the Ton...and he is going to reform her and starts by kidnapping Maggie....for her own good, mind you!!
It is one mad comedy of errors and one delightful read.
WISE WRITERS AND READERS Book of the Month for February 2002
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4.0 out of 5 stars Engaging Regency, March 1 2002
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This review is from: The Reluctant Reformer (Mass Market Paperback)
Lord James Huddleton promised to protect the sister of his now deceased friend. However in 1815 he never expected to learn from Bow St. that the sibling Margaret Wentworth is the notorious courtesan Lady X. As bad, the chit is heading to Madame DuBarry's establishment frequented only by male members of the aristocracy.

Not sure how to reform the fallen lady, who apparently has had sex with everyone but him, James kidnaps Margaret even though she denies his accusations. However, James soon finds himself falling in love with his captive who reciprocates his feelings. As he learns that she is not Lady X, James needs to keep his beloved safe, as someone wants her dead.

James is a caring individual who sticks by his word though no one but he knows what he vowed. However, he also learns that good intentions can prove a strange road. The identity crisis is amusing, as readers who like an earnest battle between the sexes will laugh a lot. Though Margaret's danger adds excitement, that subplot spins away from the prime theme of THE RELUCTANT REFORMER. Still, Lynsay Sands furbishes an engaging tale that the Regency crowd will find delightful.

Harriet Klausner
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2.0 out of 5 stars not as good as her earlier books, April 26 2002
By 
Brenda Condit "satinskper" (Albuquerque, NM USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Reluctant Reformer (Mass Market Paperback)
I love this author but i didn't like this book very much. I was so looking forward to it that I bought it 4 months before it came out. I have always enjoyed the humor and wonderful writting style of Lynsay Sands but this book lacked that humor and style. I did find it somewhat funny in a few random scenes. And i will admit that the love scenes are hot but the plot didn't thrill me. The characters were boring to me and the situations that the heroine gets herself into may me think she was an incredibly stupid woman not one who was supposed to be making it on her own. I'm sorry that this wasn't a better book but I'll still read Lynsay Sands books in the future.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A mistake that led to love, Dec 28 2003
This review is from: The Reluctant Reformer (Mass Market Paperback)
Lord Gerald Wentworth had been Lord James's best friend before dying saving his life. James had promised to protect Gerald's beautiful and virtuous sister, Margaret, but when he found her in a house of ill repute, he was sure she was Lady X, London's most enigmatic wanton. He had to find a way to reform her and save her from scandal, and, at the same time, keep his hands off her luscious curves and himself from falling in love with the temptress.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Who'd have guessed that reform could be so much fun?, Feb. 16 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: The Reluctant Reformer (Mass Market Paperback)
Fans of The Switch and Lady Pirate are in for a treat! Lynsay Sands has delivered another wonderful regency comedy in The Reluctant Reformer.
The old proverb says that no good deed will go unpunished. Lord Ramsey and Maggie are just finding this out. Kidnapping, masquerades, hijinx in a notorious bordello-- Relucant Reformer has it all. It's just the ticket for driving off the winter gloom.
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