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The Wicked Wallflower

(Bad Boys & Wallflowers #1)

3.77  ·  Rating details ·  4,039 ratings  ·  419 reviews
Maya Rodale's captivating new series introduces London's Least Likely—three wallflowers who are about to become the toast of the ton

Lady Emma Avery has accidentally announced her engagement—to the most eligible man in England. As soon as it's discovered that Emma has never actually met the infamously attractive Duke of Ashbrooke, she'll no longer be a wallflower; she
Mass Market Paperback, 357 pages
Published October 29th 2013 by Avon
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Average rating 3.77  · 
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 ·  4,039 ratings  ·  419 reviews

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Katrina Passick Lumsden
Jul 28, 2014 rated it did not like it

This book is just. Stupid. The premise is sort of embarrassingly ridiculous, any attempt at humor falls completely flat, the pacing is awful, and the characters are just badly plotted. The hero and heroine never really get to know each other, making their pretense at some deeper connection wholly laughable, and the peripheral characters are shallow and uninteresting. They're all rather watered-down HR cliches, and even as cliches, they don't work.

It's been stated in other reviews, but I'll
UniquelyMoi ~ BlithelyBookish
The Wicked Wallflower is a wicked good time read! I adore 'wallflower' stories because I love watching these women blossom! They're always more clever and exciting than society gives them credit for, and being there as they open up and let people see who they really are - often with the help of a devilishly handsome and rakish man - keeps me smiling and sighing throughout the story and, ultimately, falling in love!

This story is all that, as well as unique. The addition of "The Fortune Games" i
Oct 30, 2013 rated it did not like it
This book started out so good. However when I got to the part where Emma, our heroine goes to a house party unchaperoned, I really should have stopped reading.
However, I liked the Duke & Emma, so I preserved.

When Emma and her friends refer to her finance's presence as the Ashbrooke Effect I really should've stopped reading. Did I? No.

When I got to the point when Emma arrives at the house party unchaperoned and no one comments on it, I really should have stopped
Needs to be slashed with an editing pen; many redundant scenes and dialogue. Pretty much the run of the mill regency duke story, with a few cute pretty acts and colloquy. Read like the author's first book (it's not, but the first I've read by Ms. Rodale), there's something there but very infantile.

Oh, and you probably want to stuff any historical knowledge into a dark corner of your brain while you read this. I mean, I could be wrong but the terms "Lover Boy" and "God Awful" and an unmarried mi
Laura the Highland Hussy
Nov 19, 2013 rated it it was amazing

Review posted on Got Fiction? Books

I really liked this book. You do have to suspend belief for the Fortune Games, and the dialogue was very modern, but I still had a great time reading it.

Lady Emma and her friends are drinking one night, lamenting the fact that they are still unwed and beginning their fourth Season. Emma meanwhile, has a boy (Benedict) who’s been courting her these past three Seasons. He and she have discussed their future life in detail, and
Jun 15, 2013 rated it really liked it
I've given this a B- at AAR, so let's call it 3.5 stars.

This first book in a new series by Maya Rodale is fun, fluffy, and unashamedly pokes fun at a number of trends in current popular culture. Now, I love well-done romantic fluff. It’s hard to write convincingly, and Ms Rodale certainly displays a talent for writing sparkling dialogue that flows effortlessly. The story is well written, there’s plenty of wit, the chemistry between the hero and heroine is wonderful, the love scenes are steamy
Aug 01, 2013 rated it really liked it
I won't lie, I almost labeled this one as a DNF. I wasn't the biggest fan of the beginning. Both characters were kind of annoying and I wasn't really digging the way the scenes kept switching back and forth. But I kept reading because I usually love Maya Rodale's work and I am so glad that I did. Once I got to the halfway point I just couldn't put this book down. I loved the banter and humor between Blake and Emma and I found myself really falling for Blake. Once he became aware of his feelings ...more
Juliana Philippa
This is my first book by Maya Rodale and I had several problems with her writing style and story construction. I didn't like the constant back and forth between scenes that are taking place at the same time in two different locations—just write one, then write the other. There were also several inconsistencies or things that didn't add up (her parents are in the carriage with them, but then they're back home to greet her when she gets back; why would Benedict act so quickly and I don't believe L ...more
Oct 29, 2013 rated it did not like it
Please note that if there was ever a book to be named a 'mistorical' , this would be it. Any resemblance to 19th century England is purely coincidental. I'm generally not a stickler for accuracy, more important is story. This story, however, did not even come close to compensating for the many, many baffling inconsistencies in the world building (a newly betrothed couple traveling together for three days without a chaperone, nor anyone commenting on it, was the least of it) . Rote characters, in ...more
The Wicked Wallflower is the first in an intriguing-sounding new series that mixes historical and contemporary romance. It will consists of three historical romance novels that are "written" by the protagonist of a set of contemporary novellas. The "author" bases her novels on her own love life and the short stories show where the inspiration came from.

I have been reading Maya Rodale ever since her debut novel, The Heir and the Spare, and have enjoyed all of them. So I was definitely
More of a 3.5, really. It was a pretty fun read, but I had a couple of minor issues.

I'm one who can usually roll with some historical inaccuracies. Forthright, independent, sarcastic regency heroines? Sounds great! Rakish, womanizing heroes who are almost always the impossible combination of rich, titled, built, intelligent, and charming, and who never ever have the myriad sexually transmitted diseases to match their alley cat lives? Sign me up! Because here's the thing: a modern rea
Apr 03, 2014 rated it it was ok
My first and likely last Rodale. Some redeeming humour, the occasional clever turn of phrase and good relationship portrayal between people who have difficulty expressing emotion like the duke and his aunt.

Last few chapters flowed well and everything was wrapped up very satisfyingly. Tough to get to that point though as most of it was Torturous.

Here's why:

1) Endless repetition of the word wallflower. We get it. She's not the most popular gal at the party. (Repetition in general reall
This book is ridiculously fun.

Now. Let's get this out of the way: for people who are sticklers for historical accuracy, skip it. The Fortune Games are such a leap that you'll probably never get past it.

For people who just like a good story, though, and don't particularly care about genre rules... it's a hell of a lot of fun. I loved the characters, the wit, the banter, the twists and turns and grand gestures. I was barely able to put this book down to go to work, because
Gwen (The Gwendolyn Reading Method)
This was not well written. Which is sad because I love wallflower stories! :(
Sep 22, 2017 rated it liked it
Guys....this was a very silly book. I have been reading about the Duke of Ashbrooke, who is an immensely sexy character appearing in several books throughout Rodale's later work (he rescues Olivia in her book and it was swoon-worthy). Unfortunately, he wasn't as alluring in his own book. Sure, he had his moments, but in much of the story, he was a pretty shallow playboy who cracked a kooky plan to grow up that I still don't quite understand. It goes something like this:
1. In a drunken state, th
Oct 24, 2013 rated it really liked it
Review posted: Happily Ever After - Reads
Blog rating: B+

After a sherry-filled tipsy night, three wallflowers, Emma, Olivia & Prudence decide that the best and only way to get one of them finally engaged to be married is to simply write the engagement letter and post it in The London Weekly. Emma has been counting the years now, up to 3, to when her love, Benedict, will finally propose. The only issue, he’s being forced by his father to marry a well off girl and Emma doesn’t have mu
Oh man I really enjoyed this one.
3.5 stars

Maya Rodale’s new series under the umbrella title of Bad Boys and Wallflowers consists of both Historical and Contemporary romances, in which I believe the contemporaries are modern re-workings of the historicals.

This first book in the series was a very enjoyable piece of well-written fluff, although if you like a little more actual history in your historical romances, this may not be the audiobook for you. Good fluff is hard to pull off, and there’s no doubt that Ms. Rodale has the talen
Nov 18, 2013 rated it really liked it
Lady Emma and the Duke are engaged…at least on paper. As soon as Ashbrooke strolled in amongst the ladies, ready to claim the fiancé he had never met, I was hooked. Lady Emma isn’t sure how to fix the mess she has made, but she’s surprised to find herself risking everything to go along with the pretend engagement. While she might be saying “yes” in public, she keeps telling him “no” in private. And that’s when the fun begins.

Blake (aka Ashbrooke) expects a meek, docile woman. After a
Feb 10, 2013 rated it really liked it
Utterly romantic story of a wallflower, Lady Emma 'Least Likely to Misbehave' and how London's most notorious rogue, the Duke of Ashbrooke falls for her. I enjoyed how Emma refused to fall to the Ashbrooke Effect but finds herself unable to stop thinking about him...or kissing him. Her lack of confidence in herself was a bit frustrating but Ashbrooke strives to help her see who she truly is, how he sees her (some very romantic gestures happen). We also see more to Ashbrooke than the rogue...he i ...more
Lady Wesley
Jul 27, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: arc, arc-rev, amz-rev
"I like more H in my HR."

That was my one-line quickie review immediately upon finishing this book. I planned to write a more thorough review, but reconsidered. If you like fun, fluffy, not badly written but utterly ahistorical romance, then you'll enjoy this book. I do not and did not. The author plans to publish a contemporary version of the same plot, but really it won't require much rewriting to do so.
Jess the Romanceaholic
So much fun and very ROMANTIC *happy sigh*

4.5/5 Stars, full review to follow closer to the publication date.
Oct 02, 2013 rated it liked it
I love Wallflower stories. There was some funny, sweet dialoged moments in the book. Just didn't WOW me, but am intrigued enough to want to read the next book in the series.
Feb 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
The Wicked Wallflower was an enjoyable romance between a wallflower and one of society's biggest rakes and I really liked it.

The Wicked Wallflower begins with Emma Avery's debut into society which doesn't go quite as she planned. Flash forward three years and Emma along with her two best friends, Olivia and Prudence, are considered wallflowers and three of London's Least Likelies. After the three indulge in too much sherry and a letter that should have been destroyed gets printed in the paper, Emma finds her/>The
Nov 12, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Uh yeah, 5 for 5!

One of the things I found out the hard way is that if you read almost 200 books from one genre, you will eventually be bored by repetitive plots. But then Maya Rodale, who describes herself in her website as an author of smart and sassy romance novels, comes along and restarts my hope that maybe there are still some original historical romance novels out there, waiting to be discovered, or written, and read.

The super cute love story between Lady Emma and
Oct 06, 2014 rated it really liked it
A 24-hour read can't be bad! It was also exactly what I needed after two (awesome, but long) weeks of heavy non-fiction.

The good:

- Our hero is strong, but not an ass. He lets Emma make her own decisions and never forces her to do anything. (Except for that once, but he repents.)

- Our heroine is smart, witty, and pragmatic. All of her decisions make sense, for the most part.

- The banter is ample, sharp, and above all fun. Rodale plays up the comedic value almost t
Feb 09, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I think I read a different book

Let me be frank with you... I bought the book because I read the 3 star ratings and one of the reviewers was SHOCKED, shocked! That the female and male leads got into some shenanigans, also mentioning that the storyline wasn't faithful to the epoch.
And then... I began to read the book, became absorbed in the story...and I LOVED it, loved the male and female leads, the secondary characters. How Ms. Rodale weaved a story about dreams broken and conquered, of ho
Jan 01, 2016 added it
DNF - a pity because this author is a good writer; however, I can't be doing with the liberties she takes with the customs, rules etc of the period and the ridiculous story line. I thought I might be able to enjoy it just as a light bit of holiday listening as I really like Carolyn Morris as a narrator, but even she couldn't save it :(
DeAnna Knippling
Nov 26, 2013 rated it really liked it
Well done. Contrived engagement, nobleman with his own purposes, a shy girl who puts a toe out of line with steel-toed boots, as it were. The title sums up what one wants from the genre: nerdy girl makes bad with a very male man with a sense of humor. The end :)
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 1 Mar 21, 2015 12:13PM  

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Maya Rodale began reading romance novels in college at her mother’s insistence. She is now the author of numerous smart and sassy romance novels. A champion of the romance genre and its readers, she is also the author of the non-fiction book Dangerous Books For Girls: The Bad Reputation Of Romance Novels, Explained and a co-founder of Lady Jane’s Salon, a national reading series devoted to romantic fiction. Maya lives ...more

Other books in the series

Bad Boys & Wallflowers (3 books)
  • Wallflower Gone Wild (Bad Boys & Wallflowers, #2)
  • What a Wallflower Wants (Bad Boys & Wallflowers, #3)
“What are you reading?"

She replied without once taking her eyes off the page. "I am reading the sort of sentimental novel men dismiss as rubbish but could actually stand to learn a thing or two from."

"That's an awfully long title," he remarked dryly.”
“You must be the only woman in the whole entire world who is immune to the Ashbrooke Effect," Olivia said. "Amazing. You are a medical marvel."

"First of all, the Ashbrooke Effect is not an actual medical condition," Emma lectured, after another sip of her drink. "Secondly, I refuse to believe it even exists at all."

"I suffer from it even thinking out him," Olivia said. "My heart is fluttering and my skin feels hot. I must be blushing all over."

"That's probably all the sherry you've been drinking," Emma remarked.”
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