by Edith Layton

September 2004
ISBN: 0-06-056709-0
Reviewer Graphic Button Avon Books
Mass Market Paperback

In 1800 Lord Geoffrey Sauvage is falsely accused and convicted, he is to set sail on a ship to Australia. With him his twelve year old son Christian.

Fifteen cruel years and five heirs to the Earldom later it seems to be the Hammondsí turn. However, before they can move into the mansion and take hold of its many treasures, Christian returns to England and lays claim to the Earldom. Who is to say though, that this grown man is the same boy that left beaten down years earlier. The Hammonds are sure not to take just his word and accept him as the new Earl of Egremont. So they send for Julianne Lowell. Julianneís late brother was best friends with Christian and that should provide her with enough knowledge to determine his real identity.

Who could have foreseen that Julianne would fall in love with the intruder, the imposter? Or is he? Never completely free of her doubts Julianne discovers that as long as this dangerous stranger is honorable his identity doesnít matter. Her heart belongs to him

The theme is a favorite with fans of Somersby and Martin Guerre and Edith Laytonís take on it, is just as intriguing and fun. Her characters are lovable and the mystery is left unexplained until the very end. Julianne is a likable heroine and the way she stands by Christian is wonderful to behold. The bad guys are obvious, and the motivation a little too in your face, but all together itís an enjoyable and fast paced read that should please just any regency romance reader.

Reviewed in August 2004 by Kris Alice.

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