Thursday, October 8, 2020

The Vicar and the Rake by Annabelle Greene

One Vicar. One Rake. One Secret Society. One Plot Kitten. Many, Many Feelings. The Vicar and the Rake by Annabelle Greene.

Debut author Annabelle Greene brings us the brilliant first book in her Society of Beasts series, in which a quiet country vicar is unwillingly reunited with the duke who left him long ago…

As a young man, Sir Gabriel Winters left behind his status as a gentleman, turning his back on his secret desires and taking a self-imposed vow of celibacy. Now a chaste hard-working vicar, his reputation is beyond reproach. But, try as he might, he’s never forgotten the man he once desired or the pain of being abandoned by his first love.

Edward Stanhope, the Duke of Caddonfell, is a notorious rake, delighting in scandal no matter the consequence. With a price on his head, he flees to the countryside, forced to keep his presence a secret or risk assassination. When Edward finds Gabriel on his estate, burning with fever, he cannot leave him to die, but taking him in puts them both in jeopardy.

With the help of a notorious blackmailer, a society of rich and famous gentlemen who prefer gentlemen, and a kitten named Buttons, they might just manage to save Edward’s life—but the greatest threat may be to their hearts.


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The Vicar and the Rake by Annabelle Greene

Book 1
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
B&N  ~  Google Play  ~  iTunes  ~  Kobo
Carina Press (Harlequin)


Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

The Vicar and the Rake is the first in a new series, the Society of Beasts. I felt this an excellent debut of a new-to-me author, one where I am intrigued to read the next in the series.

As a man of the cloth, Gabriel is looking after the parish of his long-lost childhood friend, who abandoned not only their friendship but the townsfolk. Dutiful, kind, with a true server's soul, Gabriel finds worth through helping those who need it, even if they hadn't asked for the help, wearing himself thin.

Edward is your classic rake, one with a dark backstory, but seems spoiled with no ambition, forever finding himself in impossible situations that he himself placed himself in. With a supportive cast of fellows who pick up the messes after him. From his valet, to his baby brother, and the other three in the Society of Beasts. The duke has another out for his blood, running back to the countyseat he abandoned at eighteen.

In a second-chance, slow-burn romance, with an undeniable connection, Edward and Gabriel perform a mating dance, set to the backdrop of awaiting what to do next to protect Edward's neck, quite literally. Add in helpful siblings, fellow hedonists, a scrawny kitten, and a young boy, you've got the recipe for an entertaining reading escape.

However, there were times when my attention waned, read over the period of a week. I would be both interested, but then the pacing would slow, where I would then become disinterested. I can't quite put my finger on what was missing, just that I wasn't as invested in the story as I believed I ought to be. The Vicar and the Rake had all the elements I adore, but I wasn't quite gripped.

Overall, it was just a bit too slow in the pacing, slightly meandering, with repetition and redundancy that slowed the pacing even further. While I was curious as to what would happen next, entertained as to the characters and their outcomes, something kept pulling me out of the story but I'm honestly not sure what it was.

Recommended to fans of historical romance within the MM Romance genre. I am highly anticipating the stories for the rest of the members of the Society of Beasts, as well as hoping to get more glimpses into Edward and Gabriel's future, along with their siblings' budding romance.

Author Bio

ANNABELLE GREENE writes hot, heartwarming historical romances with plenty of humor.

When she isn't crafting the perfect HEA, she's making pasta or walking along Italy's beautiful Adriatic coast.

Connect with Annabelle

Facebook  ~  Twitter  ~  Instagram  ~  Website  ~  Goodreads

Carina Press

Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of The Vicar and the Rake (Society of Beasts #1) by Annabelle Greene to read and review.

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