This book was sent free for honest review by the publisher. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
An Earl by Any Other Name by Lauren Smith
Series: Sins and Scandals #1
Published by Forever on Aug. 1st, 2017.
Genres: Historical Romance
Buy Links: Amazon | B&N
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An earl in the streets, a rogue in the sheets . . .
Leopold Graham, Lord Hampton, was never a man to let propriety stand in the way of his pursuit of pleasure. Hedonism is his only desire in life—until his father’s death saddles him with debts that threaten to bankrupt the entire family. Now the only thing that stands between him and utter ruin is marriage to a proper, and preferably wealthy, young lady.
Ivy Leighton is no sweet English rose. Perhaps it’s her gypsy roots, but she would rather make a spectacle of her independent spirit than sit quietly on the sidelines. If that means that the only place she’ll ever have in society is firmly on the shelf, then so be it. But when Ivy runs into the handsome, rakish Leo who’s looking for a respectable, well-bred wife, she can’t stop thinking about the troubles they can get into. Now she just has to convince him that a life with her is really what he needs.
AN EARL BY ANY OTHER NAME by Lauren Smith is the novella length first in Smith’s new series, Sins and Scandals. While this story was dismally short at a little more than a hundred pages, I found it just as satisfying to read as a full length historical romance. AN EARL BY ANY OTHER NAME has introduced me to a new enjoyment of short stories and a another historical romance author to look out for.
Leopold Graham—Lord Hampton—is furious at his father’s infamous death. Not only did the scandal put a back smear on the Hampton name, he saddled Leo with so much debt his only chance to keep his family afloat is to marry for money. His mother is firmly against her son sacrificing himself, and hatches a scheme to make sure her beloved son doesn’t make the same mistake she did. When Leo runs into Ivy Leighton, exotic beauty and stanch suffrage supporter, he knows she’s trouble, but the scorching heat between them is hard to ignore.
“A woman without a say in her culture, her politics, her life, or her property is no better than a slave. The chains are invisible, but still they are there.”
It isn’t often that both the heroine and the hero become fast favorites of mine, but such is the case with Leo and Ivy. They were wonderful characters and such a cute couple! Ivy is beautiful, intelligent, and brave. She stands up for what she believes in and she’s so strong to take everything she’s been through and use it to try to make the world a better place.
At first, Leo seemed uptight and unbending when it came to women’s activism, but he quickly warmed up to the idea after an intelligent discussion with Ivy as an equal. I enjoyed how much growth his character experienced throughout the novel. And a man with a soft spot for animals will always have my vote!
All-in-all, I was surprised by how much I enjoyed AN EARL BY ANY OTHER NAME. I thought the lack of length would be a detriment, but the story missed nothing. I’ve recently learned the next book in the series will be out soon and I am eager to get my hands on it. This story is a must read for historical romance lovers or long-time fans of Lauren Smith.
About the Author
Born and raised in Tulsa, Lauren Smith spent the first twenty-two years of her life in Oklahoma, bridging the worlds between urban girl and cowgirl. After high school she attended Oklahoma State University where she earned Bachelor of Art degrees in history and political science. Drawn to paintings in museums and obsessed with antiques, she has satisfied her fascination with history by writing and
exploring exotic, ancient lands.
Since third grade when her English teacher proposed that all students should craft a story for a young writers’ conference, Lauren has been hooked on writing. Her first self-illustrated manuscript described the mysterious disappearance of rare brown bats that were being captured by scientists bent on using them as carriers for an incurable disease. The immense sense of joy in sharing that story with others, and discussing plots and characters, made it clear to Lauren that writing was her true passion.