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REVIEW by @GinnyLurcock: To Seduce An Earl by Lori Brighton (@LoriBrighton)

On the outskirts of London in a meadow of lavender, sits a house of esteemed ill repute. But this is no house geared toward pleasing men. No, this house is for women who have come to seek their own delight. And for three young ladies it’s where they’ll find something completely unexpected…true love.
Grace Brisbane will do whatever it takes to save her dying mother, but with a stepbrother intent on gambling and drinking, their funds have run dry. What’s a girl to do when she’s left poor and destitute? Seduce an Earl, of course. Handsome and rich, the Earl of Rodrick is the perfect target. Unfortunately, Rodrick despises innocent virgins. There’s only one place where Grace can learn the secrets of seduction… Lavender Hills. The moment Grace spots Alex, the man who will teach her the ways of intimacy, she knows she must guard her heart. Alex is charming and gorgeous and completely inappropriate.
As a young man, Alex Weston is blackmailed into working at Lavender Hills in order to save his family from London ’s prisons. There could be worse ways to spend his days and nights. Still, seduction has become a chore and thoughts of freedom keep him up at night. Until he receives a new client, the sweet Grace Brisbane. He should be thinking only of his growing need to escape, instead he’s captivated by the lovely Grace. The more time they spend together, the more he realizes that their brief meetings aren’t enough. For while marriage between a lady and a whore could never happen, Alex knows in his heart that he is willing to accept nothing less.
 
 
Hello, My name is Ginny, and I’m addicted to downloading outrageous free books for my kindle. 
 
Yesterday I opened up my RSS feed, and in the Top Free Kindle Books, I found the title “To Seduce an Earl”.  I read the description, and realized that the hero of the tale was a male prostitute.  A MALE PROSTITUTE.  Immediately I heard Kaylee from Firefly in my head…
 
 
I had that sucker downloaded in less time that it takes you to say “HOLY CRAPBALLS A BOOK WHERE THE HERO IS A MALE PROSTITUTE.”
 
 
Let me start with the books flaws, and get all that unpleasantness out of the way.  First, you have to suspend the disbelief that there was a house of sin where men catered to women anywhere, much less Victorian women.  In the interest of a story with boy whores, I let this slide right on by my disbelievability meter (patent pending).  Sometimes it seemed like the author slipped into and out of Victorian dialogue.  For example, I don’t think any Victorians used the word ‘fuck’.  I might be wrong, but I’m nearly positive.  There were several cases where she might have copy pasted small snippets of dialogue, like about how day old stubble is somehow erotic.  She referred to a portion of the male anatomy as a “bulb”.  Now this was only an issue because I kept going “if it looks like a bulb, then there’s something wrong with it.  He was a whore, perhaps you’d better not touch it.”  Sorry… odd terms for genitalia gives me weird mental images, it’s a personal quirk I guess.  Finally, there was my other pet peeve of romance novels, the overly long “does he really like me? like really really?  like LIKE like?”
 
 
Can you get around all those little quirks?  If not, don’t bother.
 
 
Still with me?  Excellent.  Let me get to the good stuff.  Alex is a jaded whore who’s burnt out on his job.  He was taken at his family at 13, seduce at 16, and treated like shit ever since.  He’s main task?  Teach young virgins the way of seduction and passion to either prepare them for their husbands or to make sure they enjoy their first time… I know, remember, we’re not questioning that in favor of boy whores.  He feels nothing except a desire to escape his gilded cage.  But where would he go?  What would he do?  He’s trapped by fear.  Fear of failure, fear of the unknown, fear that he really is nothing more than a whore.  He is a beta hero.  No alphas here.
 
 
Grace is a woman driven to the brink by her step-brother throwing their meager funds at gambling and whores (the female ones).  Her mother is sick, and she has a 16 year old sister to consider.  Oh, and at 24 she’s practically on the shelf!  Of course she’s beautiful, and could have been married years ago if not for the fact that she *gasp* has a brain and refuses to hide that fact.  Really, she’s a very progressive woman.  Her virginal innocence isn’t just in reference to the state of her hymen though.  Grace is upbeat, chirpy, good and pure to the point that it’s almost like getting slapped in the face.  It’s sort of like dealing with a morning person before you’ve had your coffee.  She’s your alpha heroine.  Sure, she needs to be rescued from her dire financial straits, but she’ll damn well figure a way out of it on her own.
 
 
Here’s the setup.  Her idiot step-brother, John has devised a plan to basically sell her to his good old buddy, the Earl of Rodrick.  The only problem being that the Earl isn’t into the innocent type, so John arranges for her to go to Lady Lavender’s (the brothel) and be schooled in the way of seduction, sans the intercourse, of course.  Now when he sends here there, in through the back door (there’s a joke there, I’m nearly sure of it) he doesn’t actually bother to tell her that she’s going to a house of ill repute.  No, he instead tells her that she’s there to buy a rare book.  They meet each other in Alex’s bedroom, and there’s an instant attraction between them. Of course, since each one misunderstands why the other is there, hilarity ensues.  Seriously, that first interaction between them may be my favorite thing in the entire book.  Even with the odd mixture of upper class, lower class, and modern dialogue.
 
 
4.0 out of 5.0.  Again, if you can get around the few relativity minor flaws, this book was highly enjoyable.  Plus it was free.  And there were boy whores.
 
 
OH!  Before I forget, while reading I kept going “yes, but is Rodrick really a nice guy?”  See my gut told me he was a dick.  Without telling you too much, go with that gut instinct.  Also, you’ll want to know more about Gideon, but you never get it.  I’m hoping his book is next.  And released soon.  He’s the alpha male character.
 
Click here to get your copy of To Seduce An Earl from Amazon.com!

 
 
 
Follow Ginny on Twitter @GinnyLurcock or check out her website at http://ginnylurcock.wordpress.com
 
 

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