Review: The Rake

The Rake The Rake by L.J. Shen
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Final Score - 3.5 Stars

This book was such a raw revisit to an unhappy and traumatic part of my life - at times, I needed a break as I was getting some severe PTSD ( but there was a warning put in the beginning of the book, so this is ALL on me ).  Now that I'm finished, and had time to reflect on it, I'm just left with a slightly oozing wound that's been picked at.  

The only person I identified in this book with was Emmabelle Penrose - damaged, man hating, misunderstood by ALL who claim to "know" her, Belle the Valkyrie.  Side note:  I find it quite funny that there is ALWAYS a secret the Hero/Heroine keeps from everyone, they're behavior suddenly shifts/changes, but NO ONE confronts them or questions them to get to the root of it.  Where is the love and care your friends and family are supposed to show?  And I ask this as a fellow abuse survivor who hid her pain, her personality drastically changed/shifted, and not one person in her immediate family gave a damn to call me out and/or confront me.  I did not get any justice against my abuser, but you best believe I was cheering Belle on when she got hers.  I am firmly in her cheer section.

The Rake, aka Devon Whitehall - such an appropriate name for such an English a-hole, which is what Devon is.  And he makes no apologies about this.  Life has dealt him the crap cards in parents and the harsh lessons he learned as a member of the Aristocracy.  Those parents of his - God, they are AWFUL.  And I wanted to like Devon - I really did - but I just could not.  I understood what he had been through and why he went down the path he did - much as Belle - but I expected more from him.  He's older, therefore shouldn't he be just a bit wiser?  He just came across as a forever that adolescent, selfish snot. And I could accept him, nor his flaws anywhere Belle.   

I wanted to LOVE and adore this book and it's story, but I can only like it.  I didn't feel the emotions I normally feel when I read LJ's other stories.

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