Devon Ravenel, London's most wickedly charming rake, has just inherited an earldom. But his powerful new rank in society comes with unwanted responsibilities . . . and more than a few surprises. His estate is saddled with debt, and the late earl's three innocent sisters are still occupying the house . . . along with Kathleen, Lady Trenear, a beautiful young widow whose sharp wit and determination are a match for Devon's own.
A clash of wills . . .
Kathleen knows better than to trust a ruthless scoundrel like Devon. But the fiery attraction between them is impossible to deny—and from the first moment Devon holds her in his arms, he vows to do whatever it takes to possess her. As Kathleen finds herself yielding to his skillfully erotic seduction, only one question remains:
Can she keep from surrendering her heart to the most dangerous man she's ever known?
Cold-Hearted Rake by Lisa KleypasPublished October 27th 2015 by Avon
Genre: Historical Romance, Historical Fiction
Rating: 2 Stars
Reviewed on November 17, 2015
This review can also be founds on Goodreads.
It burdens me to say Cold-Hearted Rake is a miss and there are no redeeming factors.
To start off, the title irks me. Lisa Kleypas could have named this book anything and it wouldn't have made a difference when this title can stick to any of her historical romance novels involving rakes. Cold-Hearted Rake just didn't have a good ring when I first read it and neither did it click with me after I finished the book. The eye-candy cover, on the other hand, called to me.
I badly wanted to overlook every trope because I had faith Kleypas would weave the plot flawlessly and write about these characters so differently that they would beyond recognition of "been there, done that." However, I am left sourly disappointed.
These characters were butchered with their inconsistencies and their inflexibility to change. Now, I know this sounds contradicting, but can you blame me when 1) the strong-headed heroine stood up to the hero one second then she was biddable the next for all the wrong reasons, 2) the hero's sensual prowess was his only power over the heroine, 3) these two bickered as hell nonstop throughout the book and when they didn't clash, their intimate conversations, aka bonding time, were very shallow. I was rolling my eyes at every scene and I even skipped the steamy love-making scenes! Tell me, what kind of HR lover does? Apparently one who found it a sore to read Cold-Hearted Rake.
And don't even get me started on everything that was convenient for Kathleen and Devon's romance. From beginning to end, I was unconvinced of any real chemistry or plausible challenges to build up their romance. I could see trust being a reasonable growth, but not enough for Kathleen to confide in Devon within a matter of days. When you consider everything Devon has said and done to her (chasing her down like a madman, forcibly moving her mourning veil, feeling entitled to her thoughts), it was ill-timed and pretentious.
For the better part of this book, I have the side-characters to thank for entertaining me: West and the twins Cassandra and Pandora, especially Pandora.
"I asked you not to listen at the door, Pandora."
"I didn't." Pandora held an empty glass. "I went into the adjoining room and put this against the wall. When you bring your ear close enough, you can make out what they're saying."
To end this review, I won't be discouraged to read the next book in this series. It is written by the wonderful Lisa Kleypas, after all, and her books are on my auto-buy list.