Review for Cold-Hearted Rake (The Ravenels #1) by Lisa Kleypas

Cold-Hearted Rake by Lisa Kleypas

TITLE: Cold-Hearted Rake
SERIES: The Ravenels #1
AUTHOR: Lisa Kleypas
PUBLICATION DATE: October 27, 2015
PUBLISHER: Piatkus
PAGES: 386 pages
FORMAT: Paperback
SOURCE: Publisher
RATING: 4 bows

A twist of fate . . .

Devon Ravenel, London’s most wickedly charming rake, has just inherited an earldom. But his powerful new rank in society comes with unwanted responsibilities . . . and more than a few surprises. His estate is saddled with debt, and the late earl’s three innocent sisters are still occupying the house . . . along with Kathleen, Lady Trenear, a beautiful young widow whose sharp wit and determination are a match for Devon’s own.

A clash of wills . . .

Kathleen knows better than to trust a ruthless scoundrel like Devon. But the fiery attraction between them is impossible to deny – and from the first moment Devon holds her in his arms, he vows to do whatever it takes to possess her. As Kathleen finds herself yielding to his skillfully erotic seduction, only one question remains:Can she keep from surrendering her heart to the most dangerous man she’s ever known?

I don’t think excited is quite a strong enough word to describe my feelings when I first heard about this book.
Jennifer Lawrence excitement gif
I am a big fan of Kleypas’s historical romances. She’s one of my favorites of the genre, but she’s been doing contemporary for the last few years. Though her contemporaries are good, they don’t quite match the awesomeness of her historicals. Then a copy showed up randomly from Piatkus and I couldn’t wait to dive into the new story. This is Lisa Kleypas! Below are my thoughts on how it went.

Let’s get the characters out of the way first. I like both Kathleen and Devon well enough. They were both enjoyable characters, with Kathleen’s tendency to stand up for what she thinks even in a time when that probably isn’t the best idea. Devon was a little too charming for me love, but he was very enjoyable. It’s hard to not feel bad for him, his inherited this title that comes with so much debt that it’ll be near impossible to free. He just wants to go back to his old life, but that’s just not a possibility, much to his chagrin.

What I really loved were all the side characters. Cassandra, Pandora, and West specifically. They were all three my kind of characters. West is sweet and charming (eventually) and the twins (Cassandra & Pandora) are just flat out amusing. Please tell me they will each get a story?
Lilo & Stitch please gif
The twins are just so set in themselves. They are a bit eccentric, but they are either unaware or uncaring of that fact. I want to say it’s a bit of both. Either way, it was awesome to see two characters so full of life.

The writing is up to par with Kleypas’s normal levels of historical genius, the smut is the perfect level of steamy, and the witty banter is…um… witty! Overall, it was an enjoyable experience and I really recommend it to all historical romance fans. However, it wasn’t all daisies and sunshine. Below are the few issues I had with it.

My biggest issues is the last of resolve. Full disclaimer for this, I haven’t read as many historical romances lately as I used to. So maybe this is a new trend or maybe it’s been around for a few years. I have no way to know, but it bothers me either way. When I say lack of resolve, I don’t mean that the main story-line doesn’t wrap up. Devin and Kathleen’s love story is resolved as expected. I enjoyed that, though I think the certain happy news Kathleen drops at the end was a little bit over the top, but I’ll get to that in a minute! What I mean is that Kleypas incorporated a second story-line that was not resolved…at all. It’s like she was teasing you with it and then ends at the exact wrong moment and now I have to wait until the next book to see how that resolves. Let me tell you, with the way it ended, she has her work cut out for her if she wants me to truly like the next hero. But it felt very cliffhanger-y to me and I hate cliffhangers.
Amanda Bynes glare gif
I can understand a little why it was written that way as the plots were intertwined, but that doesn’t make me happier. She could have easily not given us these two side characters view points and it would have saved me quite a bit of heartache.

My next issue isn’t so much directed at this particular book, but at historical romances in general. It just happened to be a bit more prominent here and I feel the need to rant over it. Prepare yourself, this rant with container ::whispers:: sex.
Dean Winchester shocked gif
I know that things were much different back then and you couldn’t just walk to your corner pharmacy to grab a few condoms. But contraceptives WERE AVAILABLE and a well known rake would have easily been able to get his hands on them. But they don’t and they rely solely on the pull-out method to prevent pregnancy. For all of you who don’t know, let me explain something, k? The pull-out method is not very effective!
Mindblown gif
This isn’t that much of a big deal to us adults who are (hopefully) well-versed in preventing unwanted pregnancy, but what about the ignorant teens? That statement is not saying that teens don’t know about sex or aren’t having it, simply that they are uneducated because no one tells them the truth. And don’t say teens don’t read romances novels. When I was a teen historical romance was the only thing I read. No, seriously. I just hate to think of teens reading that and getting the wrong idea. Okay, mini-rant over.

Beyond those two issues, I adored this novel. I enjoyed the characters and the plot and the humor. It’s definitely a must-read for any other historical romance junkies out there!

****Thank you to Piatkus for providing me with a physical in exchange for an honest review****

4 bows
Tabitha's signature

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2 thoughts on “Review for Cold-Hearted Rake (The Ravenels #1) by Lisa Kleypas

  1. When I first heard about this I was also beyond Excited! But now that it’s out, I am almost too nervous to read it! Which is crazy. I’m glad you enjoyed it, even though there were issues. I understand about the whole pull-out business too. That gets a little frustrating.

    • I understand completely! It’s hard to not have super high expectations about novels like this and with that comes the understanding that it will be difficult for the novel to live up to it.

      It really does get frustrating! Most of the time, I just ignore it, but it really stood out to me in this for some reason and I just couldn’t keep quiet about it.

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