Book Review: The Spinster and the Rake by Anne Stuart


The Spinster: As a maiden aunt, Gillian Redfern lives as an unpaid servant to her demanding family. Little wonder she finds the attentions of a rake distracting, and even less wonder that her usual good sense begins to unravel when Lord Marlow takes her in his arms.

The Rake: Ronan Patrick Blakely, Lord Marlow, is a man of great charm and little moral character, a gambler, a womanizer, and handsome as sin to boot. He has no qualms about placing a wager on the virtue of one small, shy spinster.

But Lord Marlow is about to discover that Miss Redfern is more siren than spinster. She amuses him, arouses him, and, much to his dismay, makes him a better man. Gillian will discover, in turn, that Lord Marlow possesses the power to turn her into a very wicked woman. The rake and the spinster are poised to find a love that neither could have imagined.

If only someone weren’t out to destroy them both . . .

Anne Stuart recently celebrated her forty years as a published author. She has won every major award in the romance field and appeared on the bestseller list of the New York Times, Publisher’s Weekly, and USA Today, as well as being featured in Vogue, People Magazine, and Entertainment Tonight. Anne lives by a lake in the hills of Northern Vermont with her fabulous husband.


Thanks to the rules of society and the bland life she’s led, Gillian aka Gilly is reluctant to admit her intense attraction to Ronan…a very handsome, rebellious rake. After all, during those times men were given more leeway when it came to these things.
Being 30 and unwed, however, has planted Gilly firmly on the shelf, and considering she’s wealthy in her own right, it doesn’t take much for Ronan to get to her bend the rules. These two have more than enough chemistry, but are extremely lacking in alone time. But any true reader of historical romances know how easy this can be rectified.
Gilly has her hands full with her drama-queen, self-proclaimed “delicate” sister-in-law, her newly adult nephew (who happens to find himself in a bit of a pickle), and her busy, smitten niece – who’s upset that she hasn’t found herself in a bit of a pickle. That’s a somewhat interesting story in and of itself.
There’s some hinting to a secret that doesn’t turn out to be as big as I’d hoped. It leaves somewhat of a shallow mystery of unanswered questions, but not enough mystery to intrigue.
I anticipated the moments Ronan would speak. His candid and tactless behavior put more than one smile on my face, and despite his occasional rudeness, I crushed a little as he always spoke the truth.
I don’t know if I’ll remember to look for the next in the series, but I will read it if presented to me.

Rating system: Cups of Coffee (the less the better)

0: You won’t need any coffee to stay up for this one. It’s intriguing enough all on its own.
1: You’ll stay up late, but not all night. Brew one cup.
2: You’ll read as long as you’re not tired. If you are, two cups should do the trick.
3: I hope you got plenty of rest; you’ll need it, or at least 3 cups.
4: If the cable goes out, read the book. It’s better than nothing, I guess. Oh, don’t forget your brew!
5: Find anything else to do- it doesn’t matter what it is. Don’t waste your coffee. Too much caffeine is bad for you.

My rating: 2 cups of coffee

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