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The Smuggler Wore Silk

(Spy in the Ton #1)

3.73  ·  Rating details ·  346 ratings  ·  98 reviews
After he is betrayed by one of his own, British spy Julian Travers, Earl of Langford, refuses to retire without a fight, vowing to find the traitor. But when the trail leads to his childhood home, Julian is forced to return to a place he swore he’d never see again, and meet a woman who may be his quarry—in more ways than one.

Though she may appear a poor young woman dependa
Mass Market Paperback, 283 pages
Published January 7th 2014 by Berkley
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Start your review of The Smuggler Wore Silk (Spy in the Ton, #1)
Sandi *~The Pirate Wench~*
Re-read..need to finish up this series, rating still stands at 4 1/2

Setting: Regency England
Steam Factor: Med-Hot
4 1/2 Stars

When his cover has been revealed, Julian Travers Earl of Langford is then forced to retire from his life of being a spy.
But there is a traitor amongst them that he must expose before he has to go and give it all up.
The trail leads him to a smuggler's cove and to Grace Hannah.
Grace is the poor relation of the local gentry, and she appears to be quiet and biddable by day b
3.5 stars (oh how I wish it could've been higher *pout*)

With its quick paced story (almost too quick, but more on that later) and the unique combination of a spy hero and a smuggler heroine, The Smuggler Wore Silk was a hidden gem I was happy to discover. I think what stood out the most was how many negative tropes the book contained that would’ve ordinarily had me bashing my head into a wall and/or rolling my eyes all the way back into my head. These include an emotionally constipated hero with
Dec 28, 2013 rated it really liked it
A nice Regency era romance with a bit of espionage and smuggling thrown in for good measure just sounded all sorts of fun to me so I grabbed this one up and settled in for a bit of entertainment. The book easily met my expectations. I had some issues, but my overall feeling was pleasure with the story.

The story is about a nobleman who is more than he seems. The 'Wandering' Earl of Langford is none other than one of England's most accomplished spies, The Shadow. Due to a traitor within the walls
Sandi Layne
Nov 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
First, let’s start with the cover. The image of Grace (Our Heroine) in her clearly-silken gown, holding the pistol behind her, is perfect for the story. And the tag line:

He went looking for a traitor. He found a wife.

is just right. Because there is no indication about what went on between the first sentence and the second.

And believe me, it is a bit more complicated than one might imagine!

The tagline mentioned above concerns Our Hero, so I’ll start with him. Because I like him a great deal. N
Susan Gorman
Dec 16, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Alyssa Alexander's debut novel The Smuggler Wore Silk is fabulous!

Loved the hero, heroine, the well developed secondary characters and the plot line. I stayed up late to finish the last 100+ pages.

Julian Travers is the type of character who appeals to me; a strong , brooding hero with secrets. Julian is the Earl of Langford is well known in London society. His nickname is the Wandering Earl. But, Julian is really a spy known as the Shadow. Julian's identity has been compromised and he is given o
My Book Addiction and More MBA
The perfect combination of espionage, secrets, chemistry and action! If you’re looking for a new author, then look no further because Alyssa Alexander’s debut novel has it all! As soon as I finished reading this one, I searched her page to find out when the next in the series is set to come out!

When Julian Travers sets off to his estate in Beer, it certainly wasn’t with the intention of finding a wife. All Julian wanted to do was find the traitor who was forcing him into retirement so he could c
Mandi Schreiner
Oct 21, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: historical
The premise of this book sounds exciting – Julian, being forced to retire from the spy business goes on one last mission to prove he can still be useful. He falls for a female smuggler who has a bad reputation with the ton and likes dangerous activities. Except, it really wasn’t all that exciting.

For one, there is a lot of time spent away from being a spy and a smuggler. We see the every day life of Grace – how she keeps her uncle’s home and how she is a healer of sorts for her village and we se
Jan 23, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It is kind of refreshing when you encounter a broken, cold hero who can still charm the hell out of you.
Julian does that to his woman, Grace and me, the reader. I really liked him.
He easily flits from charming, warm, and considerate to cold, dark spy. And he isn't even the darkest hero I've ever met. When we meet him, he's a spy who is being told to retire. This doesn't sit well with him, especially since he's at the top of his game.

Grace the heroine is a bit of spice of life too. She is of cou
3.5 stars

This was delightful, I loved how Julian kept calling Grace 'fair lady' throughout the book. I thought the growing feelings from attraction between Julian and Grace felt natural and kept developing into more and more after their marriage (of convenience). I liked that both Julian and Grace's individual arcs involved learning that they were lovable, that they were worth more. This self worth thing is something that also keeps them apart, especially with Julian, who keeps his secrets and h
Apr 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Another new author for me, and I loved the story. I have loved regency settings since I read my first Barbara Cart land book when I was 13 years old. And they are just getting better and better.
What can be better then a spy, and a smuggler? The spy is the Earl of Langford, trying to out run his memories of his childhood. The smuggler, is Grace Hannah, whose parents died leaving her to live with an uncle that treats her worse then the servants he has. What brings them together? Will the past they
Much as I wanted to like this book, unfortunately I couldn't get into it.
The story was interesting enough, the writing style smooth but I couldn't move past the easy way everything smoothed over and clicked into place or the insta lust. I lately find myself having zero tolerance towards stories where the main couple just can't keep their hands to themselves from the first glance (yes, that includes fantasizing caressing or undressing or whatever someone upon laying eyes on them).
Aug 17, 2013 rated it really liked it

Julian Travers', Earl of Langford mission in life is to be the best spy for his country. He has forsaken his ancestral home and all the duties that come with it because he wants to prove his dead father wrong. So when he's almost forced into retirement he fights against it. He tells his boss that he thinks someone in the Home Office is leaking highly sensitive military information and is feeding it to a smuggling ring in Devon, his home seat. His last mission (or so he does not hope) is to
Debbie Lester
Jan 31, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Alyssa Alexander's debut novel, The Smuggler Wore Silk is the first book in the Spy in the Ton series. Readers are given a tale of action, adventure, mystery and intrigue, with a dose of romance to cap it off. Alexander has a way with dialogue that is exceptional. The witty banter she gives her hero was both entertaining and sexy. With a resourceful heroine, a few spies, a traitor and a smuggling ring led by a woman, what more could readers ask for in a historical romance?

What I liked:

First of a
Nov 18, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc
The Smuggler Wore Silk by Alyssa Alexander
originally posted on
Loved, loved, loved this story. I cannot believe it is a debut novel. I was engaged with the story from the beginning and could not put it down! The opening scene is fantastic, Julian Travers, Earl of Langford, also known as “The Wandering Earl” is a British spy, however, he has been discovered, more importantly betrayed. Because of this betrayal he can no longer work in the Continent as a spy and
Mar 05, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I really liked this book. Ms Alexander is a talented first timer and I look forward to the next book in this series.

Julian is an earl who has been a spy. The French now know who he is and his future is no longer going to be spying on the Continent. He has avoided his family home and his family responsibilities because of a childhood filled with trauma and pain. Now he will have to go back home and find the traitor in his own back yard.

Grace is a lovely young woman who lives with an uncle who too
Jen Davis
Dec 01, 2013 rated it really liked it
Julian’s entire life is wrapped up in his work as a spy. But a traitor has threatened to take it all away from him by exposing his identity. The crown wants him to retire, but he plans to uncover the traitor and work himself back into the fold. His only lead is a Grace Hannah, a young lady who seems to have ties to the smuggling community. He picks up his ignored title of Earl and returns to the home he left behind more than two decades earlier.

Grace is a good woman. She’s a poor relation treate
Nov 08, 2013 rated it really liked it
The Smuggler Wore Silk is a great start to a new series. The romance revolves around espionage, smuggling and treason, wonderful aspects to make an engaging story.

Julian Travers, the Earl of Langford has been spying for the crown for many years, he is called the Shadow in the espionage world, Yet the ton just call him the Wandering Earl as he has not been back to his home in years and rarely is seen in one place for long. It is unfortunate that the crown feels his identity has been compromised a
Feb 21, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Smuggler Wore Silk is book one in the Spy in the Ton Series by Alyssa Alexander. I really enjoyed this book. It is a very complex story that kept me very much engaged. I couldn’t put it down. Julian Travers, Earl of Langford has been betrayed by someone. He has served his country well as a spy but now he must find the fiend who exposed him and others to danger. He believes he knows who is involved - a beautiful lady named Grace Hannah. But Grace is a mystery. On one hand she serves the peopl ...more
Dec 23, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I read “The Smuggler Wore Silk” by Alyssa Alexander in one day. I kept turning pages and saying to myself, “I’ll just read to the end of this chapter”. However I just kept on reading because this book was one you can’t put down because you just have to see what happens next.

The story takes place during the Napoleonic wars between France and England. Grace Hannah is a ward of her uncle, but is treated more like a servant and is considered a non-person because of her parentage. She is involved wit
Jul 18, 2014 rated it it was ok
I think this could have been better. A couple of points:

Julian's flirtations felt contrived.
The whole time I kept thinking, "Are women really falling for that?" Apparently the heroine did, and she fell hard. When Julian was trying to flesh out Grace's secrets, Grace noticed that he would flirt with her but she'd sense that he had ulterior motives. The annoying/amusing part of it was that even though she noticed that his manner towards her was fake, she still falls for it instead of becoming mor
Avid Series Reader
The Smuggler Wore Silk by Alyssa Alexander is the first book of the Spy in the Ton mystery series set in regency England. Julian Travers is the Earl of Langford....and a British spy. Betrayed, he's fighting against 'retirement' (no more undercover assignments). He's determined to find if Grace Hannah, a woman who leads a smuggling ring, is giving key military information to the French. In order to do so, he must return to his childhood home; his cover playacting as a frivolous, flirtatious empty ...more
Dec 10, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Julian Travers could care less about his title or his duty as the Earl of Langford. He’s a spy on a supposedly last mission that takes him reluctantly home to Devon to flush out a traitor. He has been gone twenty-three years after a painful event made him flee and never want to return. Known as “the Wandering Earl," he vows to be nothing like the unfaithful men in his family, especially his philandering father, even though he feels he must resort to seducing information out of his quarry, Grace ...more
Jessica Andersen
This was a fun romance/mystery, it was a quick read and had good characters. This is the first in a new series about spies among the English gentry. This one hits all the tropes, the inexperienced yet to enlightened for her time heroine and the world weary, experienced gentleman who always thought he was above getting married and all that.

Alexander did a nice job throwing enough red herrings in that there was some doubt to the mystery, even if the romance was predictable.

Don't mistake me thoug
Aug 24, 2013 rated it really liked it
Thoroughly enjoyed this book. Well written with characters that I totally connected with. The chemistry between Julian & Grace was wonderful & the banter between them at the beginning was very entertaining.

Grace is my fav type of heroine. Intelligent & a healer. Forced to live with her uncle when she is orphaned; her uncle treats her like dirt & is constantly putting her down & Grace is lacking in self worth tho it's obvious all the servants & just about everyone else adores her. She does just a
Mandy Glover
Apr 08, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: historical
I was presently surprised by this new-to-me author, Alyssa Alexander. In “The Smuggler Wore Silk” we meet Julian Travers, Earl of Langford and British spy. After being betrayed, he discovers that the incriminating evidence originated in his boyhood home. The evidence points to Grace Hannah, a young woman living on the charity of her uncle.

Julian meets Grace as she is bent over into his oven alongside his cook/housekeeper. He immediately sets out to win her over to discover what secrets she migh
Sally Kilpatrick
Feb 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing
The best compliment I can give this book is that I couldn't put it down. So many things I needed to do today, but making sure Julian and Grace made it through to the other side somehow landed on top.

Julian's a charmer, but under his Wandering Earl facade he's a calculating spy. Grace isn't what she seems, either--the easily ignored poor relation is actually a smuggler and a healer. Who better for a spy than a smuggler?

I'm a sucker for a breeches wearing heroine and a tortured hero. Alexander giv
Nicole Laverdure
Jun 26, 2013 rated it really liked it
Charming Regency suspense!

The Smuggler Wore Silk is a great debut for new author Alyssa Alexander. I liked her two characters Julian, a wounded hero & spy and Grace a brave intelligent woman. Being forced to retire, Julian, will have one last mission that will change his life for ever. But, he still has secrets and sad memories of his past that makes him a tortured man. He will meet Grace who will do everything in her power to help him.
Amazing plot in a world of spies! It's a beautiful historic
Diane Peterson
4.5 stars. I really enjoyed this debut book from Alyssa Alexander. It was a well-written spy vs. smuggler story with very likable characters. Our hero is an English spy tortured by his past. He returns home for what might be his last mission and discovers an unlikely, beautiful smuggler. Forced into marriage, they attempt to find their way to each other through a world of secrets and intrigue. My only complaint is that the ending seemed a little abrupt. Otherwise, it was a very good read. The pl ...more
Wendy LaCapra
Jan 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I loved everything about this book: the plot, the characters, the romance, the heat! Impeccably researched and soulfully rendered, sinking into this story of a spy and a smuggler was a joy. The hero's struggle with the brutality he witnessed as a child was moving, but for me the heroine made the story. Her character was layered and complex and I loved watching each twist challenge her to come into her own.
Patricia Kiyono
Jan 18, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I was immediately swept into a world I'd never experienced before, but Alyssa Alexander painted such a clear picture I felt right at home in both of Grace's worlds - the gentle, noble life, and the dark world of smuggling. I loved Grace right away - intelligent, compassionate, and strong. Julian was the perfect hero for her: also strong, but willing to listen to her and let her be who she was. I fell in love with all the characters, and can't wait for the next Spy in the Ton Novel! ...more
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Historical romantic suspense writer with an addiction to good food, good books, sleep and yoga.

Not necessarily in that order.

Other books in the series

Spy in the Ton (4 books)
  • In Bed with a Spy (Spy in the Ton, #2)
  • A Dance With Seduction (Spy in the Ton, #3)
  • The Lady and Mr. Jones (Spy in the Ton, #4)

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