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Never A Gentleman: Number 2 in series (Drake's Rakes) [Mass Market Paperback]

Eileen Dreyer
3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
RRP: 7.99
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Book Description

5 May 2011 Drake's Rakes (Book 2)

SHE HIDES HER TRUE SELF. . . Miss Grace Fairchild is under no illusions about her charms. Painfully plain, she is a soldier's daughter who has spent her life being useful, not learning the treacherous ways of the ton. She may have been caught in a scandal with society's favourite rogue but how can she marry him when it means losing herself?

WHILE HE HIDES HIS TRUE COLOURS . . .Diccan Hilliard doesn't know which of his enemies drugged him and dumped him in Grace's bed, but he does know the outcome. He and Grace must marry. To his surprise, a wild, heady passion flares between them. Yet Diccan is trapped in a deadly game of intrigue Grace knows nothing about. Will his lies destroy Grace just as he realizes how desperately he needs her? And how can he hope for a future with her, when an old enemy has set his murderous sights on them both

Frequently Bought Together

Never A Gentleman: Number 2 in series (Drake's Rakes) + Always A Temptress: Number 3 in series (Drake's Rakes) + Barely A Lady: Number 1 in series (Drake's Rakes)
Price For All Three: 20.21

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Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Forever; 1 edition (5 May 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9780446542067
  • ISBN-13: 978-0446542067
  • ASIN: 0446542067
  • Product Dimensions: 17 x 10.4 x 3.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 524,209 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Book Description

New York Times bestselling author Eileen Dreyer delivers another passionate, page-turning story in The Drake's Rakes series which will appeal to fans of Victoria Alexander, Sabrina Jeffries, and Samantha James.

About the Author

USA Today best-selling author Eileen Dreyer has won five RITA Awards from Romance Writers of America, which secures her fourth place in the Romance Writers of America prestigious Hall of Fame

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing 2 May 2011
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
What a disappointment. This author fails to deliver again. The excellent writing style, historical accuracy and delightful characters are let down by a ridiculous plot.

Set in Regency England, the hero, Diccan, is a government spy who is working secretly to expose a group of British traitors known as the Lions. He and the heroine, Grace, are drugged by the Lions and put into bed together. The Lions seem to intend that when Diccan refuses to do the honourable thing and marry Grace he will be disgraced in society. Quite how this is supposed to stop him hunting the Lions I was never sure.

Diccan marries Grace even though he thinks she is very unattractive. The author really makes too much of this. Grace is very tall, thin, has a long face and limps. Society openly laughs at her. I found this very overdone and a distraction from the romance. Having married Grace, Diccan is told by the Lions that if he seems to care for Grace she will be hurt. This plot device just didn't work for me as it was never made clear why Diccan's marital relationship was being targetted by the Lions.

Diccan then embarks on his mission of being extremely cruel to Grace in order to keep her safe. This cruelty involves taking a mistress and calling Grace unflattering names in private and public. His blatant infidelity and cruelty made it quite hard to continue to like Diccan. He comes across as a weak character who is being easily manipulated by the Lions. Grace is equally irritating. A complete doormat. She has so little self respect that she puts up with Diccan's behaviour without saying anything and just tries harder to please him. There are a few really cringeworthy scenes that I could hardly bear to read.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Dangers of a Perfect Reputation 21 April 2011
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
Known to society as "The Perfection" Diccan Hilliard has spent years carefully crafting his carefree, sartorially splendid, charming persona. His role as a rising diplomat is yet another front, all helping to hide his secret work for the government. Returning from the continent with news of a treasonous plot, Diccan is braced for his enemies' next move...

And then he wakes up in Grace Fairchild's bed.

As tall as a man and painfully plain, Grace is under no illusions about her prospects in life. But after a life following the army, caring for her father and his soldiers, she's finally free to live her own life. No more duty, no more hiding. It's time to live the life she wants.

Until she wakes up to find Diccan Hilliard in her bed and all her dreams turn to dust. Because while Grace couldn't care less about her own place in society, Diccan's reputation is important - and no one will believe they'd both been drugged. A more reluctant pair is hard to imagine, but honour and duty must be satisfied, and after that the real struggles begin.

After the excellent Barely a Lady, Eileen Dreyer returns with the second in the DRAKE'S RAKES series. And once again her heroine is exceptional. Grace first appeared as Lady Kate's colourless companion, whose father died valiantly at Waterloo. An everyday, ordinary young woman with extraordinary character, I really felt for Grace as she strove to turn herself into the wife Diccan needed.

In fact I had so much sympathy for her that I only had frustration left for Diccan. Yes, he suffers as he struggles to do his best for king and country, while also trying to keep Grace safe. But why didn't he just tell her?
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 3.2 out of 5 stars  39 reviews
36 of 40 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Here we go again... 13 April 2011
By Amazon Customer - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I have mixed feelings about this book. Like the first book it made me want to know what happened in the end. I liked Grace but the things she put up with just seemed ridiculous. What self respecting woman would put up with what was done to her ? She seemed similar to Olivia in the first book with her lack of backbone. Just when she seemed like she might make a stand Diccan simply gave her a look or touched her and she melted. She didn't know him that well but she heard him verbally degrade her and saw him with the mistress and obviously that just turned her right on ??! I am all for characters being a little imperfect but I still like to see them somehow keep their integrity. These heroes (if you can call them that) seem to have a lot to learn, but I guess why should they when these spineless and desperate for love woman put up with what they dish out. I also just loved in the end when they were passing around the flask with the picture of Mimi and Jack "wistfully" looks at it. Wistfully means -full of yearning and sad. So with that one sentence the author gave me the impression he still has the hots for her (as if he didn't disrespect Olivia enough in the first book). I am not sure if I will be able to read the next one.
34 of 39 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Dreyer breaks the golden rule 14 July 2011
By sarah stewart - Published on
Format:Mass Market Paperback
To my mind there's a golden rule that you cannot break when writing HR, or any kind of romance. It doesn't matter how reprehensible the hero is or how much of a rake he was in the past, he does NOT have sex with another woman once he has met the heroine. Some of you may disagree and say I'm being prudish, but that's how I like my romance. This book breaks that rule. And so the whole plot line of Diccan Hilliard having wild sex with his mistress while he is supposedly falling in love with his wife doesn't ring true and consequently spoils the book for me. I think this book has real potential. I always love a story line that has a hero falling for a girl who isn't beautiful...give me hope for myself! But this book has too much of a 1970s feel for me...the hero is a beast and the heroine is pathetically glad for whatever attention she it's not a hit with me.
13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Ugh...Should have known....Aptly named "hero" 28 Jun 2011
By zenreader - Published on
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This is one of those occasions when I felt completely betrayed by the author though the warning was apparent if I only paid more attention to the naming of the disgusting "hero" Diccan (just use the first syllable). Abuse is abuse and wrapping it in pretty words doesn't make the actions at all romantic or acceptable.

The first third of the book was promising. Grace was introduced as a strong, though physically plain heroine, who became the sacrificial victim of a deception intended to humiliate and trap Diccan. Their resulting marriage was understandably difficult but I felt their characters' relationship was evolving in an interesting and emotionally positive direction. But then the storyline took a morally repulsive detour.

(Spoiler alert) As other reviewers mentioned, how can you respect or believe in a character who 1) watches her husband vigorously having sex with his mistress (all in the name of patriotic duty of course to let the hero off the hook) and then afterwards confronts him by asking to be given the same treatment, 2) lets him verbally humiliate her in front of his "friends" (again in the name of duty) and then just walks away, 3) falls forgivingly into his arms after he so "nobly" completes his mission and agrees to marry him again with absolutely no demand for accountability for his atrocious behavior to her....shall I continue?

The author reduced Grace into a submissive caricature who passively took all this abuse from Diccan in order to get her "happily ever after" ending. Diccan was a dispicable hero and there was no satisfaction at the end of reading this book because he got away with the worst possible behavior with no remorse whatsoever.
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Oh God! ... 3 stars 4 stars I don't know. 29 April 2011
By romancecritic - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I really am at a loss. I do not know exactly how to describe the emotions this novel evoked. And emotions is the correct word because that is what this novel is, an emotional ride. My heart hurt, my eyes cried, and my mind raged.

Four stars because the novel is well written, well developed, and mostly well researched. The settings are very well described (so well that at the end it got a bit tiresome). The emotions of guilt, on Diccan's side, and betrayal, abandonment, helplessness, and everything else in between, on Grace's side, are so well drawn out that the reader actually suffers them. But the author's horrible treatment of the female protagonist, Grace, and Grace's passivity bring the 3 stars into play.

After being set up and found together in a compromising situation, Grace and Diccan have to wed, to save his reputation and credibility more than hers. He is a diplomat, uncovering a plot to remove England's mad king, replacing him with Charlotte who would be putty in the hands of those behind the scheme (the Lions). So, in the name of England, shortly after his marriage, Diccan is screwing his long time mistress, who has followed him to England, so he can get information from her. Grace only knows that he is sleeping with his mistress, does not know the reasons behind it. But is made to watch her husband screw the brains out of his lover by the Lions (unaware that they are the Lions) so that she could be convinced he is being investigated for treason and help them (the Lions) bring him down. ANYWAY ...

I did not really like this part. I did not like the fact that Grace did nothing, nothing! She was nicknamed the little Colonel, well that is as inept a comparison as can be made. A Colonel should LEAD not FOLLOW, bark orders not be subservient. And that is what Grace is - subservient. It is this that makes the 3 stars stand out even more in my mind. Grow some backbone woman.

I do not know if in 1813, right after the turn of the century, women were exposed to such horrible treatment, horrible emotional neglect, horrible outright discard; I do not know if it was acceptable; I do not know if women thought it their due; I do know that if all that is true, I am glad I live in 2011.
21 of 26 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars frustrated 7 April 2011
By loverofhistoricals - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition
I am so tired of authors who think they can abuse women thru their novels. Do you honestly believe any self respecting woman would have put up with his crap. She did not know him well enough to love him she should have hated him for everything he did to her. I felt as though I were reading a bad bdsm novel. This was my first Dreyer novel and probably my last. I begged the heroine to please shoot the s.o.b. Here was a woman who had traveled the battlefields stood up to and for everyone but didn't have the brains to stand up for herself. No self respecting woman is going to demand her husband give her her turn at sex after she witnesses him having sex with his mistress. I read it through to the end because I honestly prayed she would leave his stupid butt at the end and be happy with her home and friends and finding someone else so that he would be in an agony of regret, shame and humiliation for the rest of his sorry existence. He never apoligized for anything to her just said he had to do it and what does she do "I forgive you" PLEASE I almost threw up on the spot.
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