The Rake Review

The Rake - Mary Jo Putney

The Rake

It was predicted that Reginald Davenport, disinherited and disgraced, would come to a violent end. But fate has given him one final chance to redeem himself, by taking his place as the rightful master of Strickland, his lost ancestral estate. Davenport knows his way around women—yet nothing prepares him for his shocking encounter with Lady Alys Weston. 

The Reformer

Masquerading as a man, in order to obtain a position as estate manager of Strickland, Alys fled a world filled with mistrust and betrayal. She's finished with men—yet how could she have predicted that Strickland's restored owner would awaken a passion more powerful than anything she had ever known? A passion that will doom or save them both...if only they can overcome their pasts and dare to believe in the wondrous power of love.



This love story is extremely moving as it shows how drinking and the ideas of a woman's honor aren't just a part of time period's culture but part of the human experience.


This book is most notable for its portrayal of the hero's struggle with alcoholism but the heroine has her own wonderful journey. The romance is not a steamy one but it is compelling.


The history is richly rendered and the secondary characters are all carefully drawn.


This is not a book I reread often because of the emotional toll it takes but whenever I do reread it, I am always impressed and feel like I have read deeply and well.