Customer Reviews for

Nine Rules to Break When Romancing a Rake (Love by Numbers Series #1)

Average Rating 4.5
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

7 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

Will make readers want to write their own list of adventures

It's Lady Calpurnia Hartwell's debut evening into the lion's den of high-muckety-muck English society. Calpurnia is a young woman who has played by the rules all her life; absolutely no one can find a single fault in her aristocratic frame. In fact, she reminds most peo...
It's Lady Calpurnia Hartwell's debut evening into the lion's den of high-muckety-muck English society. Calpurnia is a young woman who has played by the rules all her life; absolutely no one can find a single fault in her aristocratic frame. In fact, she reminds most people of the real Calpurnia - Empress of Rome - who turned out to be stronger and smarter than any of the men who surrounded her. So what would stop the young Calpurnia from being inundated with a mess of suitors? Unfortunately, she's a real woman, not a slender reed swaying in the wind. In addition, her mother, the Countess of Allendale, dresses her up in absolutely ridiculous clothing, and the only suitors who surround her are fortune hunters and old men with creepy looks on their faces.

At the debut, Calpurnia runs away from the vat of hopelessly improper suitors and races into the garden, where she finds herself in the company of the King of Rakes - Gabriel St. John, the Marquess of Ralston. From that moment in time, everything in Calpurnia's life begins to change. She's tired of being passive, especially when her younger sister Marianna - the Allendale Angel - announces her forthcoming marriage. Calpurnia is immediately thrust into the role of family spinster, and confides in her beloved brother, Benedick, that she wants much more out of life. Her brother loves her with all his heart, and tells her to throw out her lace cap and have some sort of adventure (within reason). Calpurnia takes things one step further and makes a list of all she wants to do including; fencing; attending a duel; firing a pistol; and, smoking a cheroot. However, the most important thing on her list is to kiss someone passionately. She's been a lady on the throne of propriety for far too long, and wants to see how the "other half" lives.

Ralston, for his part, is her intended "kissee;" and a deal is struck between them. If Ralston helps Calpurnia with her list than, in return, Calpurnia must teach his newly-arrived sister how to act and speak correctly in London society. As they work together to make Ralston's sister's debut a sparkling success, Ralston also works on aiding Calpurnia with her "list" of needs that could land the poor woman in the gutter. After all, Ralston is the biggest rake in town, so he should know all the "ins" and "outs" of getting around the rules of the ton.

For all readers, this is truly a book filled with fun and frivolity. Yes, the romance is extremely well-written and does Avon Historicals proud. But the witty conversations, and the ridiculous moments that Calpurnia finds herself wrapped up in, keep the story fast-paced and extremely fun to read.

Quill Says: To understand and love a rake.become one. Calpurnia's strong will and Ralston's protective nature will make readers run for pen and paper to start their very own list of adventures.

posted by FeatheredQuillBookReviews on April 20, 2010

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Most Helpful Critical Review

1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

entertaining but

Awkward writing ruined it for me

posted by 17543825 on May 10, 2013

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Page 2 of 18
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 14, 2015

    Great love story!

    The charaters were wonderful...i felt every one of Callies emotions. Super hot scenes and one of the best love stories i have read in a long time.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 2, 2014

    Love this book

    I love.this book

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  • Posted August 17, 2014

    I have read this book twice, it was even better the second time

    I have read this book twice, it was even better the second time around. 

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 9, 2014

    Excellent

    *absolutely the best...highly recommend the entire series.

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  • Posted August 2, 2014

    ┬┐Nines Rules to Break When Romancing A Rake┬┐ by Sara MacLean is

    “Nines Rules to Break When Romancing A Rake” by Sara MacLean is a light-hearted romp through Regency England and a gentle exploration of when ‘old maids’ fall for ‘delicious rakes’. Lady Calpurnia (a.k.a. Callie) makes a list of nine things guaranteed to ruin a woman’s reputation after overhearing her sister and sister’s fiancé describe her as ‘passive’.
    I would rate this book 3.5 stars, because while MacLean is a gifted writer and had me rooting for the heroine, there were several character/plot elements that I thought could have been improved.
    First, the romantic development between Gabriel and Callie was weak. If they weren’t arguing, they were making out and I was never convinced he was the perfect hero for her and vice versa. It seemed that one second they were talking and then the next second they were in a hot clinch. But why? Where was the soul attraction between them? How did she make him a better man? Yes, the intimacy was well written, but I would have been more convinced of the romantic development between them with less intimate scenes and more dialogue/sexual tension *gasp*. 
    Second, the ‘dark moment’ in the story was rather obvious and cliché. The ‘we-can’t-be-together-because-you-made-an-indecent-wager-on-me’ has been done before and I was hoping it was going to be something else, but *le sigh* no. MacLean had plenty of other characters she could have used (especially, Gabriel’s ex-mistress or Oxford), but everyone was sweet and charming, even Callie’s tactless aunt. 
    Overall, I enjoyed her light writing style. It reminded me of Julia Quinn and her Bridgerton series and I look forward to reading more of her books. It’s been 4 years since this book came out and I’m sure her stories have improved. 

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 14, 2014

    Fantastic.

    Great characters, story line and settings. Hope for more.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 14, 2014

    Delightful diversion

    I think I've found a new favorite author.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 4, 2014

    Ok

    This was a good book. I gave it three stars just because I didnt really like the ending. Not that the ending was all that bad, but I thought it could of been better. The story itself was pretty good and I Liked the characters. Just wasnt a book that I would say to someone ohhh you have to read this.

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  • Posted August 23, 2013

    I Also Recommend:

    I thoroughly enjoyed this book

    I had not read anything by this author but I was pleasantly surprised. There are at least 2 other books that deal with other characters in this book that carry on the story in the style of Stephanie Laurens. I've read many historical romance writers and this author is very good. I would highly recommend reading her books.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 21, 2013

    Babs

    I love the 1800's and I enjoyed this book. It's fast moving and I liked the couple Ralston and Callie. Sexy and charming. Must read.18+

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 6, 2013

    Extrodinarily Good Reading!!

    I simply couldnt put this book down! It was sexy and so much fun to read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 10, 2013

    Great, funny, entertaining.

    This was a great, fun read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 10, 2013

    Couldn't get through it.

    The characters are two-dimensional and their relaionship unconvincing. Their angst is not compelling, andI wasn't at all invested in the story. I skimmed through the last third and found nothing to entice me to go back. On top of that, it needed a better editor.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 10, 2013

    Nice Story

    A fun Regency romance!

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  • Posted May 26, 2012

    I saw the review for the book and gave the author a try. I have

    I saw the review for the book and gave the author a try. I have read many regency book and I LOVE LOVE LOVE this book. I want to savor it but I just could not put it down. It is one of those books you keep going back to to re-read.

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  • Posted May 25, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    deliciously romantic and absolutely hilarious

    Lady Calpurnia Hartwell is on the shelf. At 28 years of age, despite a healthy dowry, she finds herself destine to be seated in the spinster section of every ball. Calpurnia is considered plain by the ton. Her buxomest figure is out of fashion and only old men and fortune hunters show her a care. When her younger sister becomes engaged, Calpurnia or Callie as she prefers, begins to wish she could be free of her reputation and have a little adventure. A glass of Sherri and a misguided conversation with her brother, leave this imaginative girl to create a list of nine things she would like to do for adventure. Some include; smoking cheroot, riding astride, gambling, firing a pistol and sharing a passionate kiss. Determined to begin at once, she sneaks out of her home (at midnight) and finds herself at the door of Gabriel St. John, the Marquess of Ralston. He is breathtakingly gorgeous and a notorious rake. An act of kindness on his part when Callie was nineteen, made an impression on her. She has secretly loved him ever since. Thus, she decides he should be the one to kiss her! The tale that unfolds was deliciously romantic and absolutely hilarious as Callie gets herself in one predicament after the other. I adored the characters MacLean has created for this novel. Callie is such a breath of fresh air. She is a true romantic at heart and a good girl. She wants adventure, but doing these things makes her nervous, creating delightful situations. Her ornery and wise maid made me laugh as did the famous seamstress. Callie’s mother despite having a big heart was dreadful. Her boisterous ways and horrific fashion sense had me bursting at the seams. Gabriel is a complete rake; with a fractured heart. Despite his dandy ways, he has a strong sense of family and looks after his twin brother and sister. With his crystal clear blue eyes and devilish smile he had me swooning. He believes himself incapable of love and watching his journey of discovery had me consuming this novel without pause. The romance was hot and steamy and the two of them danced a delicious tango. Watching Callie unknowingly rattle this man was divine. I found myself rooting for them, and anxious as I waited for my happily –ever after.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 24, 2012

    Wionderful

    Totally loved this book! It was fantastic, funny, touching... could not ask for more!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 20, 2012

    AWESOME READ!!!!!!!!!!

    This book has it all!!!!! This book leaves you laughing one second, sighing the next, angry and excited, a little hot and bothered, and finally applauding at the end, raving for an encore. MacLean is AMAZING and at the top of her game. She is so talented and she makes the characters LEAP off the page as their turmoils and triumphs almost become your own. I have read all of her books as a result of this one!!!!!!!! (FRG)

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  • Posted April 17, 2012

    wonderful

    great book

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 4, 2012

    Funny, Witty, and Hot

    I loved this book! From smoking a cheroot to shooting a gun it will keep you laughing and in love with it.

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Sort by: Showing 21 – 40 of 350 Customer Reviews
Page 2 of 18