Book Review-A Good Rake Is Hard To Find

Book Review-A Good Rake Is Hard To Find

Book Review-A Good Rake Is Hard To FindA Good Rake is Hard to Find by Manda Collins
Also in this series: Good Earl Gone Bad
Series: Lords of Anarchy #1
Published by St. Martin's Paperbacks on March 31st 2015
Genres: Historical Romance, Regency Era, Mystery, Romantic Suspense
Pages: 320
Format: Paperback
Source: Library
ISBN: 1250061067
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Heartbroken by the loss of her brother, Miss Leonora Craven vows to uncover the truth about his "accident," which seems to have been anything but. Jonathan Craven was involved with the Lords of Anarchy, a notorious driving club, and Leonora can’t help but suspect foul play. But the only way she can infiltrate their reckless inner circle is to enlist the help of Jonny’s closest ally, Lord Frederick Lisle. If only he didn’t also happen to be the man who broke Leonora’s heart…
Frederick isn’t surprised to find gorgeous, headstrong Leonora playing detective, but he knows that the Lords of Anarchy mean business—and he has no choice but to protect her. A sham engagement to Leonora will allow Frederick to bring her into the club and along for the ride. But it isn’t long before pretending to be lovers leads to very real passion. With everything to lose, is their tempestuous affair worth the risk?

My Review


Miss Leonora Craven, is grieving over her twin’s death and she will do whatever it takes to find the answers to the mystery of his death. She knows that it wasn’t an accident and there is one man who has the answers…Frederick Isle. On a burst of anger she bursts into his club and demands answers. Freddy knows that one of his closest friends wouldn’t be careless with his own life. And he has been charged to find the answers, especially since the man they believe is probably responsible is his cousin. Freddy is overwhelmed to be working with Nora once again. She once broke off their engagement, and broke his heart and he ended up fleeing to Europe. He has just returned and is on the hunt for the man that murdered his friend, but he will need to work with Nora and act the loving engaged couple in order to get the answers he needs. What begins as a mystery turns into a passionate love affaire, one that reconnects these two who need love and a chance to begin again with each other. But soon there is more than love at risk, their own lives are in peril if they make one mistake.

The Hero 

Lord Frederick Isle is the youngest son of the family. And even though he is close to his family, he has always wanted to make his own way. He and three other men formed a friendship and called themselves the “Four Horsemen” and they have been tight ever since despite how different each of them is. Freddy has always been a bit of a wild card before he headed over to the continent. Despite his roguish ways, he never strayed and could never understand why Nora broke off their engagement. Freddy is the hero that surprises you. At first I was thinking he is just an average English rake but boy he isn’t. He is loyal, protective, and committed to what he believes in. When he loves, he loves fiercely and passionately. We see how even after all these years, he still has a soft spot for the woman that broke his heart with no explanation. We see how much he changes, and I loved his fighting spirit, and how he is so delicate in handling solving the murder of his friend. He doesn’t go in half cocked, but with careful precision, and I really admire a man that thinks with his head.

The Heroine 

Leonora Craven is a twin, and when her very opposite brother is murdered she will do anything to find out why and who really killed him. Nora is what many would call a “Bluestocking” heroine. Which I really adored seeing. Nora is a writer and writes for magazines, and is quite popular. Nora is quite driven in her cause for women to have equal rights. Even though she is considered a “radical” many listen to her. Leonora is the type of heroine you instantly admire and I really loved what a role she played in the story here. She is driven and determined and is hiding a secret. We don’t really know what that secret is until about halfway, but its understandable to see why she broke things off with Freddy, especially consider the time that this story takes place. Leonora’s character was quite unpredictable at times, and I never knew what she would do next.

Plot and Story Line 

A Good Rake Is Hard To Find was quite a fun and tantalizing read and boy I had a ball with this book. There were two major factors that really kept me so in tune with this story. The first was the plot with the murder mystery, and the second factor was the secret that Nora is hiding. Now sometimes I really have an issue with the whole “secret” but this one was a whopper and I honestly didn’t see it coming at first, and it totally blew me away. This is where I got a real kick because I love it when a story tilts my axis and changes what I was expecting. It definitely was a good twist to the story. Now the romance was so achingly sweet and tender and there were times my heart just went out to these two because of what they both were struggling with. Both Freddy and Nora love each other but have been kept apart by a secret Nora refuses to share, but boy Freddy shows his true colors when he learns the extent of what Nora has gone through. Despite how much she has hurt him, he is so empathetic and understanding. Now this is where the plot thickens and it really gets intense because their lives are in danger and must tread carefully. And his cousin, what a villain. From the beginning, you sense how evil he is, and literally he is on the edge to madness really with all the actions he takes for his “club”. And there is a moment toward the end that shocked me to the core, because there are some side characters that work with Freddy and Nora, and you sense how much they need the truth to come out so that those caught in this dangerous web can be free. My emotions definitely ended up getting caught up in this story. Well worth the read especially if you are a Manda Collins fan.

The Cover 

DELICIOUS!! Need I say more??? I love the casual yet confident pose and look at those abs….LOVE EM’

Overall View 

A Good Rake Is Hard To Find was a mind-blowing romance that swept me off my feet from the very beginning. There is a sensuality and dangerous feel to it that keeps you coming back for more. Stimulating and full of thrills and passion!!

Series Order

Lords Of Anarchy

A Good Rake Is Hard To Find (1)

Good Earl Gone Bad (2)

Good Dukes Wear Black (3)

About Manda Collins

Manda Collins spent her teen years wishing she’d been born a couple of centuries earlier, preferably in the English countryside. Time travel being what it is, she resigned herself to life with electricity and indoor plumbing, and read lots of books. An affinity for books led to a graduate degree in English, followed by another in Librarianship. By day, she works as an academic librarian at a small liberal arts college, where she teaches college students how to navigate the tangled world of academic research. A native of coastal Alabama, Manda lives in the house her mother grew up in with two cats, sometimes a dog, sometimes her sister, and always lots of books.


2 thoughts on “Book Review-A Good Rake Is Hard To Find

  1. Renee, I have really enjoyed Manda’s “Ugly Ducklings” and “Wicked Widows” series and was looking forward to this first book in her new series but I found it disappointing. I loved Frederick and Leonora’s characters but the romance didn’t work for me for the reasons I put in my review:

    “I wanted to know about their previous relationship. How did they meet? How long they were together? What were their feelings for each other? Leonora had decided she would never marry because of the shameful secret she carried so why did she agree to the engagement to Frederick, only to call it off? In this instance, a flashback would certainly have been helpful in answering these questions. I’m not sure whether it was this lack of insight into their previous thoughts and feelings but the romance between them felt flat somehow. I also found it hard to believe that a seasoned rake like Frederick would not have realised that Leonora wasn’t a virgin when they made love.”

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