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The Perfect Rake (Merridew Series) Mass Market Paperback – July 5, 2005

77 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Series: Merridew Series (Book 1)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Berkley (July 5, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0425203956
  • ISBN-13: 978-0425203958
  • Product Dimensions: 4.3 x 1 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (77 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #155,361 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Award-winning author, Anne Gracie, spent her childhood and youth on the move, thanks to her dad's job, which took them around the world. The gypsy life taught her that humor & love are universal languages and that favorite books can take you home, wherever you are.

As well as writing, Anne teaches adult literacy, flings balls for her dog, keeps bees and enjoys reading, music, cooking and her tangled garden.

Anne also blogs regularly with the Word Wenches; Jo Beverley, Mary Jo Putney, Patricia Rice, Susan Fraser King, Nicola Cornick, Cara Elliot and Joanna Bourne. Visit them at

Visit Anne's website at
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

116 of 118 people found the following review helpful By tregatt on July 20, 2005
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Ever since I read "Tallie's Knight," I've had an immense admiration for Anne Gracie. Here was an author who had managed to infuse her novel with romance, sensuality, tenderness and poignancy. I've always regretted that I have been unable to easily find her other romance novels, so that when I discovered that the first installment in a new series written by her was about to be published, I knew that I had to keep an eye out for this book. "The Perfect Knight" lived up to my every expectation -- here was a book full of tender romance, sensuality and poignancy, complete with a touch of the gothic.

Ever since their parents tragic death, the Merridew sisters have been living with their brutal and heartless grandfather, Lord Dereham. A man driven almost mad with bitterness and anger, Dereham has been beating his five granddaughters for years, as well as isolating them from society. Finally escaping from their mad grandfather, the Merridew sisters make for London and for their granduncle Oswald's house, where they hope that he will launch the elder sisters into society, and where they're devoutly counting on the second Merridew sister, Charity (who happens to be exceedingly beautiful) to contract an advantageous marriage. Their plans, however, hit a snag when granduncle Oswald insists that plain jane Prudence, as the eldest sister, make her come-out before her more beautiful sisters. At her wit's end, Prudence concocts an imaginary engagement to the hermit duke, the Duke of Dinstable.
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37 of 39 people found the following review helpful By M. Nix on October 29, 2005
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
Prudence Merridew has four younger sisters, all terribly beautiful. Although she is considered plain, she loves her sisters and would do anything to protect them from their tyrannical grandfather. When opportunity presents itself, Prudence, using forgery and wit, whisks her sisters away to their their Great-Uncle in London. Unfortunately, Great-Uncle Oswald insists Prudence secure a husband before her younger sisters. That Prudence already has a fiance, albeit without her grandfather's approval, is a secret Great-uncle Oswald cannot learn.

Gideon, Lord Carradice, a dashing rake, is amused and intrigued by the spirited young woman that has mistaken him for his cousin, the Duke. Deciding to play along with Prudence and her fictitious story of a secret engagement, Gideon enjoys the farce that ensues, along with the stolen embraces. Finding Prudence enchanting, Gideon's rakish nature struggles with unexpected new feelings. Can he win her heart away from her absent fiance, Phillip Otterbury?

Gideon is not only handsome and sensual, he's very amusing. His perception of Prudence brings a smile to my face. I adore his single-minded infatuation. Smart, witty, and fast thinking, Prudence's stubborn will and loyalty make her a heroine worthy of such a splendid rake!

I am really looking forward to the rest of this series! I must say that while there were times in the story that I wanted to smack Prudence because of her loyalty to the undeserving Phillip, I found the book very satisfying. Ms. Gracie has a talent for adding humor into an already delightful romance. If you are a fan of historical romance, you will enjoy The Perfect Rake.


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23 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Susan Smith on December 22, 2005
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Like Tregatt above, I, too, have been enchanted by this author since her debut a few years ago. Indeed, I wrote the first review for amazon of her first book, The Gallant Waif. I am only sorry her books do not appear with more frequency. However, they are worth waiting for!

Rather than sum up the plot (which, by the way, is quite complicated) I'd rather comment on the characters the author places on her stage. The idea of a family of a family of beautiful sisters with an ugly duckling in charge has been done many times but rarely with such charm. The heroine, Prudence, is feisty, spirited and charming but like her sweet, gorgeous sisters, she is a tortured heroine. The mad grandfather (somewhat over-drawn but nevertheless very fearsome) has been a child abuser and none of the five sisters was spared. However, Prudence has borne the brunt of his ire and the reason why is something I found unique in a Regency novel. I won't spoil it!

Our hero, Gideon, Lord Carradice, is also tortured. He is one of my favourite sorts - the rake with a secret hurt and a heart of gold. He is steadfast and loyal to Prudence and his love for her is satisfying and realistic to the reader. He has looks, charm, a great sense of humour, etc but ultimately, it is his deep and abiding love for Prudence which marks his character.

There is a great deal of sexual tension in this novel - something Anne Gracie has always managed to achieve with great skill. Although nothing happens between the H/H until the end of the novel, you can feel the sizzle between them and the consummation is written with great skill and in the very best of taste. Yes, taste. Too many sexual scenes in romance novels are a tale of gymnastics rather than an expression of love.

I'm looking forward to the next novel in the series - A Perfect Waltz - as I am very keen to meet Prudence and her delightful sisters again. Highly recommended and a keeper!
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