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Never Romance a Rake by Liz Carlyle
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Never Romance a Rake (edition 2008)

by Liz Carlyle

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278940,656 (3.84)14
Member:AmaliaZeKhat
Title:Never Romance a Rake
Authors:Liz Carlyle
Info:Pocket (2008), Edition: 1st Pocket Books Pbk. Ed, Mass Market Paperback, 448 pages
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Tags:Fiction, eBook, Romance

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Never Romance a Rake by Liz Carlyle

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  Ebeth.Naylor | Sep 30, 2013 |
Amazon received,headless woman cover ( )
  romsfuulynn | Apr 28, 2013 |
NEVER ROMANCE A RAKE begins when the Comte de Valigny gambles away his daughter's hand in marriage. Camille is pretty and has a good dowry, but I had a hard time believing a pair of dissolute aristocrats would compete to leg-shackle themselves to a woman of poor reputation, whom they have never previously met, when neither is in need of money. Sleep with? Sure. Marry? No. Actually, Camille is the one who needs to get married, and she's not too particular about the groom.

Kieran has a terminal illness and since he expects to die shortly he's able to see marriage as an act of charity; he's saving Camille from marriage to a disgusting pervert. Camille tells Kieran that she's not very interested in wastrels like himself, but she has a use for his name and his seed - they're how she'll gain access to her inheritence.

Both are determined not to develop any emotional attachment for one another.

From there on out it's all moody histrionics. Kieran isn't much of a scoundrel - he's more like a martyr who's chosen death by non-traditional means. He spends his time wallowing in self-loathing and making sure that Camille is well taken care of. He realizes he's becoming attached to her, but he doesn't want Camille to be upset when he dies so he struggles to maintain distance. He spends a lot of time moping.

As for Camille...first she loathes Kieran because she thinks he's just a loser addicted to vice. Then they get married, and she has a crisis of conscience - how could she like sex with such a bad man? So far so good. But before long, she starts to actually like Kieran. And then the reader is treated to endless mental monologues about whether or not it's ok to like Kieran, and how she doesn't want to get hurt.

The sex is pretty tame. Every once and a while there's a hint of the kind of dark dominance that you expect to find in a novel about a woman gambled away during a card game, where Kieran is demanding and a bit crude, but these rare moments felt out of place to me. The truth is that Kieran is not an alpha male at all - he's pure beta. In a confrontation his most violent move is generally retreat, and from the start, it's really just a question of how long it will take Camille to take charge of him. Never the reverse.

Liz Carlyle's Devil trilogy has exactly the kind of romance I was hoping to find here - exuberantly sensual, with just enough edge to be exciting and a little dark. NEVER ROMANCE A RAKE is just gormless. Liz Carlyle used to be on my auto-buy list - but this is the third or fourth book of hers to disappoint me, and I don't think I'll be picking up another in the future. ( )
  MlleEhreen | Apr 3, 2013 |
After what felt like a slow start, the back half of the book went much more quickly for me. This is a very solid and enjoyable story. ( )
  snugasa | Mar 4, 2010 |
Kiernan is a dark, tormented, self-destructive man and for good reason given his childhood abuse. He spends most of his time drinking to excess, smoking, and frequenting bawdy houses and gambling dens. His health is deteriorating badly and he fears his death is imminent and does nothing to alter his behavior. One thing I dislike about books about rakes is that they turn out to be "fake rakes". Well, Kiernan is a real rake deserving of the title.

Kiernan meets Camille Marchand one evening in a corrupt gambling hell when her depraved father, Comte de Valigny, wagers the right to marry her (and her large dowry) in a card game. Kiernan is shocked and thinks to put a stop to it but then realizes that Camille is not fighting it. But he cannot allow the lecherous slime at the table to have her so he makes sure he wins. Afterward he takes her aside tells her she doesn't have to marry him. But Camille insists upon the marriage AND a child in exchange for her dowry. She can only collect her grandfather's inheritance after she marries and produces a child. Camille is the illegitimate daughter of the Comte's and had a difficult and insecure childhood. Her father is now trying to use her to get at her huge inheritance.

Both Kiernan and Camille are deep multifaceted characters and their relationship development was a delight from their first meeting to eventually falling in love. The love scenes are steamy and Kiernan's redemption from rake to loving husband was wonderful. All the characters were well done especially Kemble. I believe he has appeared in several previous books by Carlyle.

Given these two superb characters and their relationship and Carlyle's usual excellent prose, I was completely enthralled. Kiernan's health issues and Camille's family issues (which I won't spoil) are resolved very satisfyingly. NRAR is another keeper from Carlyle. GRADE: A- ( )
  reneebooks | Aug 2, 2009 |
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To Phil and Roscoe, the Dynamic Duo
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The West Indian sun beat down on the still and verdant fields, searing all which lay beneath.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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A cynical rake joins a sinister game of cards with dangerously seductive stakes. Abandoned by her highborn father --until he decides to use her--Mademoiselle Camille Marchand puts no trust in an aristocrat's honor, especially that of the notorious Kieran, Baron Rothewell. She too is gambling--for her life--and Rothwell is just one more card to be used. But whatever dark desires run through his veins call to her own, and the heart plays its own game --winner take all.… (more)

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