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My Fake Rake

(Union of the Rakes #1)

3.64  ·  Rating details ·  2,249 ratings  ·  531 reviews
In the first book in Eva Leigh's new Union of the Rakes series, a bluestocking hires a faux suitor to help her land an ideal husband only to be blindsided by real desire…

Lady Grace Wyatt is content as a wallflower, focusing on scientific pursuits rather than the complications of society matches. But when a handsome, celebrated naturalist returns from abroad, Grace wishes,
Mass Market Paperback, 369 pages
Published November 26th 2019 by Avon
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Average rating 3.64  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,249 ratings  ·  531 reviews

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Lacey (laceybooklovers)
I really loved this concept, a friends to lovers romance with bookish main characters and a heroine transforming the hero into a rake, but the miscommunication got a bit frustrating for me! Plus the narrator of the audio never differentiated the voices between the hero and heroine lol. So if anyone is interested in reading this, I would skip the audio
Addie H
Dec 10, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: p-newauthor
1.5-1.75 stars


A summer vacation couldn’t be complete without a slightly steamy HF romance... at least mine can’t.

Intelligent Lady naturalist is friends with bespectacled and slightly disheveled anthropologist. With the help of a real rake, nerdy (but handsome) dude begins to resemble a sophisticated gentleman. Confusion, chemistry and complications ensue.

I just love me some romance between early 19th century nerds.
Bookishrealm I was pleasantly surprised. This was my first historical romance.

My Fake Rake may have proven to little ole me that I actually might end up really enjoying historical romances. I didn't really think about the fact that a lot of them would probably end up being slow burn because of societal expectations of the time, but that's definitely right up my alley! I read a few reviews of this book before finishing it and I learned that these books may possibly be based on 80's films. If so, this
Jan 05, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This hit the spot for me in terms of both the trope combo and the writing. The tropes were some of my favs: slow burn friends to lovers, sweet/cinnamon roll hero, STEM heroine, geeky romance, & fake dating. Tone wise, I liked that this had a light, fun perspective rather than overly angsty, even though there were some definite FEELINGS and PINING happening
Aug 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Will two persons who have feelings deeper than friendship for another take the risk to damage their relationship and open their heart or will they keep their emotions shut down and risk to let happiness pass them by?

This is my first book written by Mrs Eva Leigh and it won’t be the last, this book was unputdownable, why I even chastised myself for choosing to read it on a working day!
Mrs Leigh has crafted a vivid tale of finding its with blood and flesh lively characters.

I simply adored this rat
I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

“There’s no should when it comes to what we feel. There aren’t scientific laws when it comes to the human heart.”

With a little inspiration from The Breakfast Club, the Union of Rakes series introduces readers to five boys in detention, identified with similar-ish personalities from Breakfast Club movie characters. My Fake Rake stars “the brain”, Sebastian, a
Two nerdy folks falling in love? A great idea for a historical romance! However, for me, this one fell flat. Sebastian and Grace were super adorable in their nerdiness and awkwardness, but when the heroine spends the bulk of the novel trying to win over some other dude it was really hard to believe in their romance. The happily ever after was assured, but the journey there was a tad boring because one character was intent on catching the eye of someone else and the other was intent on burying th ...more
4.5 stars

Sebastian was an anthropologist, basically penniless, even though his dad owned a profitable iron works factory. He was a total nerd, living on mutton and threadbare, yet functional clothes, spending his limited funds on books-I loved him! His stammer and anxiousness in new situations had me feeling for him, but it also presented him as a regular, likable fellow. Seb had a unique collection of steadfast friends from his school days, which served him well when he really needed help pulli
Sep 10, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: historical, arc, avon, romance
Sebastian Holloway has secretly adored Lady Grace Wyatt ever since sharing a pencil with her in the library they both frequent. But Sebastian is merely a poor scholar with no prospects, and Lady Grace is on a mission to make a famed naturalist she wants to wed notice her, a plan that includes molding Sebastian into a rake of the first order. But as these two bookish souls spend more and more time together, they realize that that happiness and true love may be right under their bespactacled noses ...more
Apr 04, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: r2020, romance, stars-4-0
“Jane looped her arm through Grace's. "Come. Let us seek out two things that never fall short of our expectations."
"Books and cakes?"

Entertaining Regency romance where it is the hero who transforms himself from shy, bookish, anthropologist into charming rake - all in order to assist his friend, the scientifically minded heroine, catch the eye of a celebrated naturalist! Add to this the help of a Duke with attitude... Yes, this is hilarious! The last quarter could have been abbrevi
Dec 26, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
One of the most absurd regency romances I have ever read. Had it been in the mid to late Victorian era, maybe I would've believed it's premise, a little. I re-read some Loretta Chase books this month and that makes it harder and harder to read these clunkers so badly written by this "new mode" of lazy regency writers like Leigh. The book is ridiculous, but I will say the duke who is a friend of the hero is scrumptious. ...more
SERIES: Union of Rakes.. book one
GENRE: historical romance
TROPES: fake dating, friends to lovers
SONGS: Russell Dickerson - Yours

Overall, this was very cute!
I didn't even mind the miscommunication between hero and heroine. They can be insufferable but understandable. I loved the writing, subtle humor, and side characters.
I will read book two immediately.
Aug 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was lucky enough to read this gem early... and, oh, my goodness... adorable! And soooo sexy...
3.5 stars

I’m always on the lookout for a new author or series and I absolutely loved this premise.

I really liked Grace and Sebastian. They’re both smart and good people. I enjoyed their friendship and how they bonded over science and the library. The friends of Grace and Sebastian are fun and even though Jane is already married, I’m excited to see that the next book is Rotherby’s story.

Plot wise, it was good. There’s a lot of inner monologue and pining away for the other. I wanted more flirtin
Trigger warnings: social anxiety

4.5 stars.

This was a fucking delight from start to finish. I mean, it's historical fiction with two nerdy scientist best friend leads who a) turn him into a rake and b) subsequently fake date in order for her to attract the attention of the scientist she's decided is her dream guy. Except that (view spoiler)
Dec 04, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dnf
DNF at 25%

A bluestocking zoologist/daughter of an earl asks a friend—a male anthropologist from a wealthy, but not titled, family—to pretend to be a "rake" so that his attentions to her at social events will lead another male scientist to whom she is attracted to pay attention to her. "Rake" here means someone who appears to be a seductive bad boy, but who doesn't have the reputation for actually sexually ruining any innocent women; this kind of rake is "the darling of the ton," rather than some
Jenn (The Book Refuge)
Soo... I'm conflicted about this novel.

There was a lot that I liked and a lot that I didn't like.

Great friendship between the H and h.
Unique jobs for both of them
Glow up scene for the H instead of the h.
She is seeing him in a new light.
Steamy sex scene in a barn (oh lalala!)
The Hero has social anxiety. Great rep for

Things I didn't care for so much:
Misunderstanding trope was over blown.
Hero did not stand up and say what he wanted. He made her make all the moves. That is sweet some time
Susan in Perthshire
I received an ARC from Netgalley in return for an honest review.

Sorry but I am absolutely fed up with writers imposing a 21st. Century, anachronistic perspective on history. This is one of the worst.

This book shows a regency world where dozens of women are trained scientists and get their papers published and form substantial parts of expeditionary forces undertaking research? A regency world where girls routinely have sex with no concern about pregnancy, reputation or anything else? A regen
Crystal Cook
Dec 03, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2020b

This was very cute and fun, I wish they had done some basic communication to resolve the main conflict, but overall a sweet read.
Leigh Kramer
My new favorite kind of book can be summed up as "these two dummies.” It is clear to their friends that anthropologist Sebastian and herpetologist Grace have feelings for one another but it takes them much, much longer to figure it out. There was so much pining, especially on Sebastian’s part as he feels doomed to remain only friends with Grace. There’s a makeover transforming Sebastian into a rake, a scheme for Grace to catch a naturalist’s eyes, and then the dawning realization that Sebastian ...more
Jan 08, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Actual Rating: 4.5 stars

Partway through this book (which I was already loving) I found out it was inspired by 80's teen movies and totally blew my mind! My Fake Rake is very reminiscent of Pretty in Pink (with the ending that always should have been) meets Regency romance, complete with nerdy characters, a cinnamon-roll hero who undergoes a rakish makeover, and a great friends-to-lovers slow burn romance. This made me laugh out loud on several occasions and was just a whole lot of fun. I am alwa
Dec 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
Lady Grace Wyatt studies reptilese and amphibians. Even if it doesn't make her popular in the eye of the ton, she's confident in herself and is okay with being a wallflower.

Sebastian Holloway is an anthropologist. He comes from a wealthy family but he have no fortune, since he decided to pursued his own studies and doing what he loves. He's penniless and not the most suave when it comes to social interaction. At least he have great friends that he met at Eton years ago.

Sebastian also have Grace

As a fledgling herpetologist and overall awkward bean, Lady Grace has spent most of her life on the outskirts of upperclass Regency society. She has friends she’s met through her studies, but lately…she wants more. And when her longtime crush comes back to England, she decides it’s time to take matters into her own hands. And that requires help from her charmingly awkward anthropologist friend, Sebastian.

Sebastian is a giant nerd with the body of a virile Viking warrior. He a
3.5 stars rounded to 4

This is my first Eva Leigh novel. Can I just say I love her covers? I don't like the font on this one, but I feel like the couple fits the characters so well.

This book is the first book in her new series Union of the Rakes. Apparently this is loosely based on the movie The Breakfast Club, which I have never seen and if I have I can't remember. A group of friends is formed in the prologue, and I'm assuming they will each have their own story in the series.

Grace is our heroin
Sissy's Romance Book Review
My Fake Rake by Eva Leigh is book One in the The Union of the Rakes Series. This is the story of Sebastian Holloway and Grace Wyatt. Grace is a Blue Stocking / Wallflower who has set her mind to a man named Mason. But of course Mason doesn't know she is alive. So her plan is to get her friend Sebastian to pretend to pursue her which will make Mason want her. But Sebastian is like her a bookish person so she knows she is going have to re-due him to make it more believable. Sebastian has feelings ...more
Jan 08, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

I loved the premise of this book - it was so refreshing to see a character like Sebastian on the page dealing with his social anxiety with the help of others, and yet in no way is he cured of it. Eva Leigh highlights the condition wonderfully.

I also liked the interest the two characters had in the sciences and the conversations that were had about women in the field.

The characters were wonderfully vibrant and the plot went where I didn’t expect it to go at the end. Overall, I really liked E
I very much understood why each character was scared to talk about their feelings, but IT WAS VERY ANNOYING. And definitely dragged on too long. This is one of those stories that could've been a novella, I think.

Also, content warning for social anxiety and I appreciate the author warning for it, but . . . it was in the acknowledgements at the end? I don't find that helpful. (It was well done.)
Sarah Galatoire
Jan 13, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Attempting to fill the Bridgerton void with other regency books— this one did an excellent job.
Feb 13, 2020 rated it it was ok
Shelves: dnf
DNF - Writing is wooden, dialog is stilted, and I'm not really connecting with the characters. So far, it lacks any sizzle or wit. Honestly, I'm finding it to be pretty dull. ...more
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Eva Leigh is a USA Today bestselling author who writes novels chock-full of determined women and men who are here for it. She enjoys baking, spending too much time on the Internet, and listening to music from the ’80s. Eva and her husband live in Central California.

Eva also writes in multiple romance genres as RITA-award nominated Zoë Archer. As Alexis Stanton, she wrote the novel on which the top

Other books in the series

Union of the Rakes (3 books)
  • Would I Lie to the Duke (Union of the Rakes, #2)
  • Waiting for a Scot Like You (Union of the Rakes, #3)

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“Jane looped her arm through Grace's. "Come. Let us seek out two things that never fall short of our expectations."
"Books and cakes?"
“Sebastian gazed at her cautiously. “Should I tell him?” “Do you trust him?” she asked. “Is he standing right here so there’s no need to speak of him in the third person?” the duke added.” 0 likes
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