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The Perfect Rake

(The Merridew Sisters #1)

3.92  ·  Rating details ·  9,399 ratings  ·  695 reviews
She ran from a brute...

Fleeing violent tyranny, Prudence Merridew escapes with her beautiful younger sisters to London. One of them must marry—and fast. To act as her sisters' chaperone, Prudence invents a secret engagement to a reclusive duke...But when the duke arrives unexpectedly in London, she needs his help to avert disaster.

...into the arms of a rake

Aristocratic Gid
Mass Market Paperback, 360 pages
Published July 5th 2005 by Berkley Sensation
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Average rating 3.92  · 
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 ·  9,399 ratings  ·  695 reviews

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Nalini Singh
Feb 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: books-i-love
Egads. Why have I not written of my love for this book? It's amazing, one of my favorite historicals! The hero is so *into* the heroine, it's wonderful. Sometimes, it's nice to get a dissolute rake who gets hit over the head with love and has to convince the heroine he can be who she needs him to be. Also, this book is just plain fun (though it does also have a more serious vein that runs through it). ...more
Lady Gabriella of Awesomeness (SLOW)
COME live with me and be my Love,
And we will all the pleasures prove.

There will I make thee beds of roses
And a thousand fragrant posies, 10
A cap of flowers, and a kirtle
Embroider'd all with leaves of myrtle.


If these delights thy mind may move,
Then live with me and be my Love.

THE PERFECT RAKE...was a beautiful love story that revolved around Prudence Merridew and Aristocratic Gideon romancing under the light of the glossy ballroom of London's ton.

The story starts out with young prudence
Feb 03, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book! It was funny and endearing at the same time. I don't remember when was the last time I laughed so much with a book, and I "blame" Gideon for that. :) He played the role of the charming rake to perfection but, wow, when he fell for his beloved "Miss Imp", he really fell hard and fast! I cheered out loud - in my mind, that is! - with his final act of bravery and heroism.

Prudence, Gideon's beloved "Miss Imp", was a hoot too. Her failed attempts at resisting his charms had me smil
Feb 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Who doesn't love a reformed rake in HR? They are so charming and funny. And, funny is my Achilles Heel. My hubs should know. You get me to laugh and I'm helpless to your charms. You would think that this weakness would make me like clowns. But, you would be wrong. Clowns are an abomination. They are pure evil and should never be thought of as anything less than spawns of satan.

Holy shit! Nightmares commencing now..

Lord Carradice is a proper rake. He is immune to the charms of women, until he mee
4 ½ stars – Historical Romance

Oh what a delightful, sweet treat this turned out to be! Gideon, Lord Carradice is a devilishly charming, flirtatious, affable, seemingly carefree and superficial rake, but he harbors an underlying heart of gold, an innate caring, protective nature, and a hidden, deep yearning for love. And all it takes to rumple his composed, raffish façade and reveal the truly sweet, adoring, and devoted man within is a feisty, spirited, redheaded, fiercely loyal, and nearly on th
Joanna Loves Reading
Reread/listen Jan 2021

So glad this was released in audio by a decent narrator!

I looooooooove how Gideon sees Prudence. Gorgeous to his eyes. Selfless. Honest, despite the fact they meet in a lie. He can see the why, the reason behind her actions. Melts me to a puddle every time.

Also - and this is a key moment - when Prudence and her sisters need to flee, he helps no questions asked. He trusts that she has good reasons >>> I’m here every day for that.

Previous Read
4.5 Stars—I think this was bett
Apr 20, 2014 rated it really liked it
This was lots of fun. Anne Gracie has picked up the style of Georgette Heyer, added some sex and made it her own. Gideon (the Rake in the title) is a wonderful character worthy of anything Miss Heyer could have written. I still want to know how eyes can actually look limpid but it sounds marvelous. I am a sucker for anything Regency and this one scored high. I shall be reading more of her books. ...more
Preeti ♥︎ Her Bookshelves
This book went from an insanely hilarious beginning to a sadly ordinary middle, to end in a dramatic and satisfyingly bloodlusty climax. So an above average read despite the story and the plotline leaving me just a bit dissatisfied.

I won’t go into details but I liked the book for two and a half reasons –
First, because I was tickled silly, lolling-about-holding-my-sides tickled silly!
The book finds its funny groove in the 3rd chapter and keeps shooting one sharp witticism after another.
May 11, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Rane by: BJ Rose
Amazing book!

I had to stop reading a few times from laughing so hard! I couldn't help but feel sorry for Prudence as she dig her way deeper into her funny lies with Gideon right there beside her, to make the situation even worse and funnier.
Even with the dark undertones of abuse, the story never lets up from it's lightheartedness and humor, with Gideon always ready with a joke and Prudence having to hold her tongue from not laughing or blowing her cover.

The secondary characters are also a
I'm not a huge fan of humorous HR, I much prefer more emotional angst, seriousness interspersed with bits of wit, and depth of feeling. Not to say there wasn't emotion here, there was, but not the kind I love. I loved Gideon, seeing a notorious rake fall hard and fast is always a winner for me. Prudence was okay, not a memorable heroine exactly, maybe because she was of the humorous variety. There also seemed to be many exclamation marks as if everyone had something loud or exciting to say. Anyw ...more
Robin (Bridge Four)
A Perfect Rake is perfectly fun and I was rooting for Pru and her sisters from the very start. Even the meeting between Pru and Gideon was so funny. She very much was trying to save him from a debacle of her making and he was having far too much fun just playing with her. It was entertaining and I was thinking the entire book was going to be so much fun. And it was at times but there is a lot of down time when nothing is really happening and so some of this book moved very slow for me.

Gideon is
Juliana Philippa
5 stars
Prudence Merridew is very plain (you will hear about this a lot in the book—too much), especially when compared to her four extremely beautiful younger sisters. Oddly enough it is notoriously infamous rake, Gideon, Lord Carradice, who sees only a strong-minded spitfire with beautiful grey eyes and proves the saying that "beauty is in the eye of the beholder." This book is utterly fantastic, Gideon is definitely one of my favorite heroes of all-time, and—while very dark in some parts—The P
Dec 31, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: everyone and their mom
This book was amazing! Amazing, amazing, amazing. It was so good - straight to favs. And Gideon *swoons* might very well be the most amazing hero ever. This was the funniest, most heart-warming, romantic book I have read all year. If you like historical romances this is a must-read. I can't believe I had this on my TBR-shelf for so long - but the better for me right now :-)

It is always difficult to review an amazing book because nothing you say can really explain the magic of the story and all w
Feb 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I forgot how much I enjoy this book, there are some very amusing moments in the first half of the book as Prudence and Gideon interact, I couldn’t’ stop smiling. That said there is a slightly dark undertone to some of the book, in that Prudence and her sisters have run away from their abusive and controlling grandfather and the book does start with showing this and what leads to them escaping. But overall the tone is one of adventure and humour.

One thing I didn’t like is that the sisters referre
The characters like to talk. A lot. Which is why I had to skim the last 100 pages. Anne Gracie's writing style reminds me of Julie Garwood or Amanda Quick. Which isn't really my cuppa. It's very dramatic and over the top where everyone is exclaiming things! Statements are phrased like questions. Characters are flowery with their words, even the supposed jaded "Rake" hero Gideon, who I found two dimensional at best. The heroine Prudence and her sisters are horribly abused by their lunatic grandfa ...more
Edwina " I LoveBooks" "Deb"
Aug 07, 2012 rated it did not like it
The Perfect Rake is a story about 5 young girls (sisters) that suffer horriable physical and mental abuse at the hands of their grandpapa who has taken them in because their parents ar dead. The Grandfather is very sadistic. the eldest sister is Prudence (heroine) in the story escapes with her sister to go to London to live with their Great Uncle. To accomplish this Prudence had to lie more times than I can count as the story goes on.The Grand Uncle wont let the other sister come out until Prude ...more
ᴥ Irena ᴥ
Nov 14, 2015 rated it liked it
At first I thought I would be annoyed by Prudence's sisters. One of them was so overwhelmed by the prospect of escaping their grandfather and marrying that in an instant she forgot what their oldest sister did for them. Fortunately, that sister didn't play any important role in the book so it was good. Since it seems the second book is about her, I am not in a hurry to read it. I need to forget or at least dull her presence here.

There is so much unexpected darkness in this book. Their grandfath
Feb 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 4-5-stars, gr2015, mine, gr2017

And when a rake finally falls, he falls forever.


Oh, how I absolutely loved this book, every single part of it.

Gideon is the perfect rake, really he is. I loved how flirtatious he is, and he was just amazing with Prudence. To him she wasn’t plain like she was to everyone else, to him she was the most beautiful woman in the world.

“If you were mine, I'd never leave you, Prudence. I couldn't.”

Prudence was just an amazing character, so loyal and protective of her sisters. All s

4.5 stars

This is my second year taking part in Super Wendy’s Multi-Blog TBR Challenge, and even though I don’t read the various romance sub-genres widely, I’ve nonetheless managed to find something in my TBR pile to fit the prompts each month. But I’m afraid I’m going to wuss out for the first time. November’s prompt is “It’s all about the hype” – and I don’t have anything that fits the bill. For one thing, historical romances don’t attract that sort of attention any more and for another, as an
Solid. It got progressively better as it went on. I didn’t realize how sad and terrible the protagonist’s life was until certain things are revealed.

The family was sweet and amusing to read, but dang they can be frustrating considering how Prudence literally did all the work. I know she’s the oldest, but she definitely seemed to be doing everything while the others kinda didn’t do shit.

Gideon was sweet. I don’t have much to say here.

3 stars

Things that you might want to know (WARNING: Spoilers be
Carol Cork *Young at Heart Oldie*
**5 CAPTIVATING …”when a rake finally falls, he falls forever” STARS**

This was my first book by Anne Gracie and I will certainly be dipping into more of her books, based on how much I loved this one. It’s romantic, funny and full of characters who totally captured my heart. There are some darker moments, but they never overshadowed the lovely heart-warming feeling I had after I finished reading it.

How could anyone love such a wicked, funny, foolish man? How could they not?

Oh, Gideon is such a wo
Oct 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
One advantage of being a member of a Goodreads group is that you’re encouraged to pick up books you would never have bothered with otherwise. I read The Perfect Rake as part of an October challenge.  I’d never heard of the book or the author. (The second part of this is surprising as Gracie is apparently Australian and usually I am at least aware of most published Australian writers.) Nor do I find the cover inspiring, so the odds of me reading it if flying solo were low.  Hence I have my Goodre ...more
Suzanne (Under the Covers Book blog)

4.5 Stars

Prudence Merridew and her beautiful sisters have runaway from her evil Grandfather. After seeing her youngest sister, Grace, being beaten by her Grandfather Prudence knows they have to escape. Pulling off a massive deception they run to London to stay with their Great-Uncle and hope to find husbands so they can be forever out of the influence of their Grandfather. But Prudence tells one lie too many and manages to become betrothed to the charming rake Gideon, Lord Calladice.

I think
Oct 07, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: historical
A sweet and very cute book.

I liked the heroine, Prudence, even if I was torn. On one hand I liked her quick wit and her ingenuity, on the other I hated her stubborness when it went against her. But still, I liked her and sometimes even admired her!

If I liked Pru, I adored Gideon! He was fantastic! His devious mind was plain genius! His way of confounding Pru with double meanings was fantastic!

The very best part of this book was the dialogue! Brilliant!

All in all a very funny and enjoyable book!
Lady Wesley
Jan 26, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: listened
Review of audiobook narrated by Heather Wilds

I have enjoyed each Anne Gracie novel that I have read, and this one was no exception. There isn't anything terribly different about it (other than the awful grandfather who beats the heroine and her younger sisters - let that be a warning). The characters were well developed, especially Gideon, the rake who finds himself gobsmacked by the "plain" sister. The narration by Heather Wilds (whose performance I like in Anna Lee Huber's Lady Darby series) i
Oct 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Anne Gracie did a fabulous job with this story. I truly loved Prudence and Gideon. It didn't hurt that the other characters helped the story move along.

There were scenes that had me boiling and some that had me smiling. Plenty of laughable moments and teary eyed ones as well.

I loved this well written novel and welcome reading more from this author.

5 🌟 on this enjoyable read.☺
Sara Reads (mostly) Romance
Apr 13, 2018 rated it really liked it

The first 40% were spectacular, but it just went south from then. The southest that ever southeted.
It's a perfectly lovely book between a rake and an innocent. And honestly, Anne Gracie held no punches: literally.

The sisters' grandfather was awful. Utterly beyond the pale. The author seriously pulled a fast one where she had the shore within sight, only for her to quickly release the rope, so bravo for fooling me there, and sitting on the edge of my seat right until the very end!

It was such a wonderful read.

There were some negatives though. (view spoiler)
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I've always loved stories. Family legend has it that I used to spend hours playing in the sand pit, with a dog on either side of me and Rocka the horse leaning over me, his head just touching my shoulder, while I told them stories. I have to say, dogs and horses are great audiences, apart from their tendency to drool occasionally. But people are even nicer.

In case you imagine we were a filthy rich

Other books in the series

The Merridew Sisters (4 books)
  • The Perfect Waltz (The Merridew Sisters, #2)
  • The Perfect Stranger (The Merridew Sisters, #3)
  • The Perfect Kiss (The Merridew Sisters, #4)

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“What if I shave?" he said. "I look much better when I'm shaved. My cousin will vouch for that—do I not look almost handsome when I shave, Edward? " He didn't wait for the duke's reply but turned earnestly back to Prudence. "Do you think you could marry me if I shaved?” 58 likes
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