Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Reluctant Reformer” as Want to Read:
The Reluctant Reformer
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Reluctant Reformer

3.88  ·  Rating details ·  1,980 ratings  ·  135 reviews
Previously published as The Reluctant Reformer

Lady Maggie Wentworth must support herself as an investigative reporter. Writing under another name, she’s been exposing the notorious scandals of the ton—this time it’s the “working girls” of London. While interviewing the women, a client enters, and Maggie is shocked to see her beau. She changes clothes with one of the girls
Paperback, 371 pages
Published February 3rd 2002 by Leisure
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Reluctant Reformer, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Reluctant Reformer

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.88  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,980 ratings  ·  135 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of The Reluctant Reformer
There is another title for this one; 'The Reluctant Reformer'.

I must admit, I am skimming a fair bit of this one.
I wish Maggie would just give him a good slap... she's a bit too doormattish.

OK, so I did finish it. I did skim A LOT though.
Too bad, as I love a story where the H thinks the h is a tramp and has to grovel for his idiocy.
But in this one, he was just an idiot, and well, so was she.
Too many TSTL moments for both of them.

Maggie is on her own after her brother dies over seas saving a fr
Feb 07, 2011 rated it really liked it
I was in the mood for a Historical Romance, and enjoyed many of Lynsay Sands novels so I figured I was safe. I was right! Sure there were times where I thought the Heroine got into trouble just for fun, and it seemed a bit unrealistic that she could so many times, but then I thought, this was a different time, and it was different for woman, so sure, it could happen! lol

As characters go, I really enjoyed Maggie. Her personility was sweet yet strong. She was strong willed and kind. A true lady. I
Addie H
Apr 30, 2019 rated it liked it
Farcical and entertaining comedy of errors

2.75 stars
I give this one 3 stars. There wasn’t really anything wrong with it and I liked both the hero and heroine, but the romance was a bit lackluster. Not bad, but not really racy either. The characters all behaved very anachronistically and the “mystery” was easy to figure out, but on the whole it was an enjoyable read.

(view spoiler)
Jul 05, 2017 rated it really liked it
Endearing characters, far-fetched plot with absolutely no regard for the proprieties, kind-hearted relatives and affectionate servants. TSTL heroine who was still likable and a lovely beleaguered hero. Slow in parts but many laugh out loud totally nonsensical situations. A good read.
Karina Webster
2.5 rounded up.

I enjoyed this but it took a little too long for the ‘secret’ to be revealed and then she hit too many scrapes (near death experiences) for it to be anywhere near realistic 😂🙈

Will try another of her historical romances though :D
Aug 11, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Lady Margaret "Maggie" Wentworth is also known as G. W. Clark, the adventurist writer for the Daily Express. The article she is researching is about the working girls at a London brothel. Madame Dubarry gets a crazy idea. Maggie can witness for her article Maisey (prostitute) and her customer. Maisey's customer is none other than Pastor Frances, the man Maggie thought would propose to her. She climbs out of the cabinet, switches dresses with Maisey, then climbs out the window and walks along the ...more
Feb 04, 2010 rated it liked it
Maggie is just doing her job. She's a journalist. Well ... she has been ever since her brother died and left her the pen name of G.W. Clark.

Maggie's latest article is a piece on the working girls of one of London's houses of ill repute. Maggie is interviewing one girl when a client of that girl comes in. It's Maggie's beau and the local pastor. In an attempt to get Maggie out of the room (and the wardrobe she's hidden in), the girl changes dresses with Maggie and gives her a mask. Maggie sets o
Aug 04, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2019
Don’t judge a grocery store romance by the cover - this was a great read! Honestly this is the first historical romance I could get through, probably due to the freedom Maggie enjoys to move about daily life without escorts and baby sitters - though of course this is because her whole family has died.

Some portions in the beginning seemed repetitive, as both Maggie and James are a bit too hotheaded to just have a conversation thus drawing out their frustration and the case of mistaken identity.
Norma Smith
Feb 27, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of Historcal Romance.
A Lady In Disguise Is a fun and funny read. If you love historical romance novels. Pick up this book and follow Lady Maggie Wentworth and Lord James Ramsey's adventures toward true love and happiness.
A few Lucille Ball-esk moments had me laughing out loud.
Anne Z.
Aug 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I laughed loudly in my car while listening to this a few times and again when I walked into work listening its very last 3 minutes. A book that can keep you entertained throughout most certainly deserves praise. I LOVED this one!

A Lady in Disguise had everything I was looking for in a book, a little it of adventure, some mystery, some suspense, a swoon worthy romance, and some very steamy scenes.

Maggie is not what she appears to be or you would expect. She has seen a lot by masquerading as someo
Aug 03, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Oh, gracious. The cliches were thick on this one. We have:

1. A big misunderstanding that could be cleared up with a conversation.

2. A heroine who is constantly putting herself in dangerous situations and who sustains a head injury just about every other page.

3. A childless, slightly eccentric, beloved aunt.

4. Lots of dead parents.

5. A villain with questionable motivations. (Like, really? That made you murder-y?)

But, it was fun, in a throwback kind of way.
Lenna  Wright-Berry
DNF- Tiredly writing this review
First chapter alone we swapped from Maggie to James POV over a dozen of times in 24 pages. Truthfully I love Sands’ Vampire series and have never had a problem reading them but this is the first one I’ve read of her other category of romance and I didn’t get into the story, just no connection for me. I skipped around but it’s not a memorable story.
Jun 01, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Mmmm, not what I expected of a Lynsay Sands novel. I found it a little boring and repetitive at times.
It was not bad; the story or characters or writing. I was just not into it. I got bored than I started skipping just to get to the end. Oh well...
Aug 22, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Typical Sands.
Funny beginning. Gregarious characters.
Good rapport b/w Maggie & James.
♡ Sassy ~ Amy ♡
This was an old book I picked up at a flea market. I read all of lynsay sands books, she's funny and can always come up with a plot that has you saying "how can she be so stupid" or they get in one mess right out of another trying to cover up for something. Some can be pretty funny.

I think this was one of her very early books before she got so funny or had much plot. This one was a little boring & I had to keep puting it down. Neither character got me.

A girl took over being her brothers ghost w
Apr 09, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a typical love story. The moment it begins i just knew that the lady will eventually fall in love with James. There are some interesting twists and turns with a periodic drama. I like the idea where Lady is shown as a rebellious character who is trying to run the household in a man's world. Women are expected to simply marry and get settled but not expected to earn where she becomes an example of exception who falls in love and marries for love and not with a purpose of settling down whi ...more
Jan 02, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was pleasantly relieved to discover that this book was much more intriguing that the synopsis suggested. The love story was good. The over arching mystery was pretty decent, it added suspense and danger, but for someone so smart the heroine makes a bunch of very stupid moves that land her in more danger than she out to have found. I was less than thrilled at the end when there was way to much emotional angst for book where the protagonists are adults over 25. That knocked it down a star when t ...more
Nov 27, 2016 added it
Shelves: romance, historical
I have discovered that I like Sands' novels that take place in this time period (1800s) rather than the ones that take place in the 13th century--those are all similar and the way they speak and act seem so out of time that it's hard to reconcile what's happening in the story with the time period.

This one started off in a fun way--a misunderstanding that carried the story for quite some time, although after a while it got a little hard to believe that she wouldn't have said something to clear i
Marina P
The story - the hero mistakes the heroine for an infamous prostitute but tries hard to stay the gentleman he is, because he promised the heroine‘s late brother to look after her - gets irritating because the hero‘s behavior is overbearing and infuriating whereas the heroine is so alarmingly naive and makes such disastrous choices regarding her safety that I more than once wanted to stop reading.

The thing holding me back from quitting was the suspense - the villain‘s identity was rather surprisin
Jan 28, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Brilliant story, so witty. Loved every moment of it. One of my favourite stories!
Jul 04, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: historical
Reviewed on my blog, , on 7/4/19.

A silly but sweet story--I believe it's a re-release of one of Ms. Sands' earlier books, which explains why so much of it needs to be taken with several grains of salt (three titled only sons going off to fight in a war? One of whom has trained as a doctor just for the heck of it? Just the start...)

There were a lot of humorous moments--Maggie's pursuit of stories often has her finding herself in situations worthy of I Love Lucy--if that show were about a bazilli
Megan McIntyre
Jul 04, 2019 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 21, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: abandoned-dnf
I started to read this, but didn't even get far in the book. Ridiculous, completely ridiculous.

The heroine is at a brothel locked in an armoire while a prostitute is about to entertain a guest. She stupidly trades ALL OF HER clothing with the prostitute. Climbs out the window and tries to sneak out of the brothel.

The hero is a friend of the heroine's deceased brother. He's been keeping tabs on heroine, discovers she's at a brothel. Believes she is a successful prostitute called Lady X (whom is
Oh my god, I loved this book so damn much! The premise was what initially drew me in. The misunderstanding between Maggie and James had me laughing nonstop. It was all sorts of ridiculous, but the way it was executed never felt forced. The situation was just believable enough that I was willing to go along with it. Just their conversations were great because you could see the double meaning depending on whose point of view it was.

Both characters were a lot of fun, very lighthearted and lacking i
Elley Murray
Rating: 2.5 stars

Any book that has you saying "Oh barf" aloud as you're reading it is just... not that great. :/ I really like Lynsay Sands, but I was disappointed in this book. ALSO, this book made me roll my eyes so hard I strained something, and that happened MORE THAN ONCE!

I am a sucker for a mistaken identity trope, but the misunderstanding dragged on for way too long and became just farcical, beyond even the suspension of disbelief so often required to enjoy this trope. Also, Maggie and Ja
Maria Griffo
Jul 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is one of my favorite writers and this book was great. This book had adventure, mystery and romance. The story takes you on many twist and turns and makes you laugh.

This is the story of Maggie and James. Maggie's Brother died in war and he had made one of his friends promise to watch over his sister. While Maggie was going through her brothers things she found out he was a writer and she need a way to supplement her income so she took over writing the stories. While investing a story she is
Apr 28, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Would not recommend

I love this author and thought I would jump ahead on the rebranding of this book and buy the original version. Unfortunately, I did not like this book and found myself skipping ahead repeatedly to see what happened. This is not my norm with all her other books. Hopefully there will be some re-writes come the July re-release with a new title and cover. *spoilers* I found the female lead unbelievable (smart one minute and incredibly stupid the next). The premise getting her out
« previous 1 3 4 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • The Scotsman Who Swept Me Away (Seven Brides for Seven Scotsmen, #3)
  • The Duke's Stolen Bride (The Rogue Files, #5)
  • The Rogue to Ruin (Misadventures in Matchmaking, #3)
  • When the Marquess Was Mine (The Wagers of Sin, #3)
  • One Fine Duke (School for Dukes, #3)
  • Lord Holt Takes a Bride (Mating Habits of Scoundrels, #1)
  • Say No to the Duke (The Wildes of Lindow Castle, #4)
  • Project Duchess (Duke Dynasty, #1)
  • The Virgin and the Rogue (The Rogue Files, #6)
  • This Scot of Mine (The Rogue Files, #4)
  • Heiress Gone Wild (Dear Lady Truelove, #4)
  • The Earl Takes a Fancy (Sins for All Seasons, #5)
  • Some Like It Scandalous (The Gilded Age Girls Club, #2)
  • The Bachelor (Duke Dynasty, #2)
  • Engaged to the Earl (The Penhallow Dynasty, #4)
  • The Earl Next Door (First Comes Love, #1)
  • A Lord Apart (The Way to a Lord's Heart, #2)
  • Never a Bride (Duke's Daughters, #4)
See similar books…
LYNSAY SANDS is the nationally bestselling author who is known for her hysterical historicals as well as the popular Argeneau/Rogue Hunter vampire series. With her witty and charming personality, Sands describes books as, “Waking dreams or stories, tales to amuse, entertain and distract us from everyday life.” She’s been writing stories since grade school and considers herself incredibly lucky to ...more

Related Articles

Philippa Gregory is best known for reimagining the lives of famous royal women in bestselling novels, including The Other Boleyn...
69 likes · 32 comments
“Good Lord, not again! What the devil is it with you and libraries that makes you unable to control yourself in them, James? You have always had a passion for books, but really!"

"I fear she is right. I always have had a passion for libraries. Still, I never realised quite how much pleasure they could afford until I met you.”
More quotes…