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Publisher's Summary

2014 Winner--Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award--Romance

The earl of Marcham has decided to put the excesses of his colorful youth firmly behind him so he may find a wife and beget himself an heir. But a straitlaced spinster may stand in his way after she releases a morality pamphlet exposing some of his most private misdemeanors. Determined to have his revenge and teach her a much-needed lesson, the earl decides that his best course of action is to seduce her....

Miss Georgiana Blakelow has long given up the hope of marriage. Instead she's resigned to serving as governess to her siblings and saving the family estate from ruin. She might succeed if only the wretch of an earl who won the estate at the gaming table would be reasonable.

As the sparks fly, and as Lord Marcham finds himself unexpectedly attracted to Miss Blakelow, she becomes even more determined to keep him at a safe distance. The closer he gets, the more likely he is to discover that his bluestocking isn't all that she seems.

©2013 Norma Darcy (P)2014 Brilliance Audio, all rights reserved.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.2 out of 5.0
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Performance

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Story

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  • Alison
  • Wellington, New Zealand
  • 02-28-15

Such an annoying heroine!

The premise seemed promising, a classic "fiesty plain looking girl with a secret" meets "rake ready to reform" sort of tale. Sadly for a romance, this couple were remarkably unsexy, and their few moments of passion tepid. The rake wasn't very rakish, and the central female not much of a bluestocking. Her fiestiness tricked away after the first chapter, the one word description for her would have to be "drippy".

Solutions to the her situation were repeatedly offered but she kept refusing them, willing to see the family (who we are told she would sacrifice everything for) thrown out of their home. The plot twists and new elements that kept being introduced sometimes felt like they were ideas for whole other novels, and just didn't fit this one. Also the unlikely (especially for the time) behavior and attitudes of the secondary characters constantly jarred me out of the story.

Finally, the idea that putting on glasses and a hat makes one unrecognizable even to former lovers and friends who've known you since childhood is just silly.

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

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A Good Surprise!


The premise is far-fetched, the character's motivations are silly, and the resolution to every conflict, including the big reveal, is oddly simple, and strangely endearing. There were moments when I wondered what kind of story I was reading! Ultimately, I really enjoyed the ride.

There is humor and tenderness and a great romance, and I found it all hugely entertaining. Actually, there is so much to recommend this book that at times I marveled at the author's talent and creativity.

Perhaps, not everyone will "get" it, but I love Lisa Kleypas, and I think it's kind of great.

A real standout is the perfect narration by Michael Page. I've never cared much for male narrators reading HR's, (with the VERY notable exceptions of Nicholas Boulton and Tristan Hunt), but I'm happy to say Michael Page was phenomenal with this book, and I'll keep my eye out for more HRs read by him, too.

This is one for the reread pile, right after I plow through my Lisa Kleypas collection!

Recommended!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Great

I enjoyed the narrator, the story and the interaction between the characters. Glad I bought and listened to it after reading the other reviews.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Nice

Fun story! Love how the heroine was conflicted and human. She was a little Annoying at parts but over all good book.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Lia
  • Sutton, Australia
  • 05-17-16

3.5 Mixed Feelings. Lisa Kleypas It Is Not!!

The Bluestocking and the Rake' was an okay read - a Regency period piece that was rather slow, overall.
After all of the heroine's angst and idiocy regarding the hero, I was ready to kick her down a flight of stairs. While I can relate to Georgiana's reluctance in regards to Robert's overtures, the fact that the both of them had shady pasts would have made it a little easier for her to give in to a hopeful future with him - even within the strict social mores of the Regency era.
I liked Robert's character more than Georgiana's. As I stated earlier, I wanted to kick her stupid 'spinster' ass down the stairs...
Anyway - there were a few comical elements, which was nice. With the shocking introduction of the H/h however (at the hero's home, full of drunks and prostitutes).

I had expected some hot steamy sex scenes later on in the book, and was surprised that there weren't any. What little sex there was, was more implied, which was different. (It appears that poor Robert's rake reputation had grown exponentially over the years).
Other than the annoying and pitiful Georgiana, the ending with the revelation of 'the villain' threw me for a curve...WTF? It all seemed rather unbelievable, and rather anti-climactic. In any case, 'The Bluestocking and the Rake' was a sometimes enjoyable read (ie the banter between the H/h was fun) and it had a happily-ever-after.

Definitely not worth a credit but the book was only $7.34 and was wonderfully narrated which brought it from 3 stars to 3.5 stars.

Michael Page was fantastic with the delivery of the story.

7 of 9 people found this review helpful

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too long and complex , with unbelievable storyline

Would you try another book from Norma Darcy and/or Michael Page?

No , I don't think so. The story was very difficult to understand. Characters kept changing their personalities so that i did not understand what they were doing or saying. The narrator is a little too dramatic and voices the hero like an old-time villan.

What was most disappointing about Norma Darcy’s story?

I could not understand the characters motivations. Example: the aunt encourages the heroine to court the hero ( so that they can get their home back and money to help the family), but then gets mad when the heroine falls in love with him. What kind of message is this, use some one for money, but don't love them! (crazy)
Also, the heroine is always referred to by her last name. When outside of direct dialogue , characters are usually referenced by their first name,. This is very hard to understand when the maiden aunt and the heroine have the same name. At times I was confused.

How could the performance have been better?

The narrator sounds like an uptight fop most of the time and makes the hero seem like a villan twirling his moustache in hopes of getting his hands on the heroine..or tying her to the railroad tracks. He could try something a little less theatrical and with less over the top dramatics.

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from The Bluestocking and the Rake?

There was a lot of repeated scenes. Two false engagements ( ms. holt and mr peabody). Were both of these necessary? One might have been enough.
All the times the hero proposes and is told that he is too much of a rake, when none of his actions from the beginning of the book involves another woman ( except mild conversations) and no rakish behaviour. If anything the heroine flirting with mr bateman and possibly accepting a proposal from mr peabody engaged in more "rakish" behaviour.
The sister Sarah's extreme hostility was out of nowhere. She was married ( not sure if it was happily) and pregnant. No reason for anger or a "desire to be the only woman in her brother's life" as stated by the heroine.
I could go on, as so much of the plot did not make sense.

Any additional comments?

I should have known from the less than inspired title of the book that there may not have been much imagination, but hoped for something a little better from the story. I was wrong!

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • A.
  • Merritt Island, FL, United States
  • 02-22-15

I liked it

I enjoyed the mystery attached to this story. Just when I thought the book was nearing its end, another reason to make it last longer happened with another mystery. It was easy to listen to it.

3 of 5 people found this review helpful

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Great read.

A lovely story and so well read. Very glad I took the time to listen to it.

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Horrible horrible read

Horrible horrible book a romance is not a romance if the H and H of the story fight and say nasty thing to each others


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  • Yuefang
  • Luwuk, Indonesia
  • 09-03-16

A Romance That Worths The Credit

This is my first with the author, and surprisingly I like the audiobook, I even laugh often and enjoy every bantering moment by the main characters. I love the author's writing style that explaining things in main characters POV, which is sometimes funny. I can't share anything that could lead to spoilers, so every historical romance fans out there should listen for yourself and see for your own opinion.
Michael Page is really really good, his sexy rumbling voice had hooked me from the first page, it reminds me of Timothy Dalton from Jane Eyre.