Sunday, April 25, 2010

Once and Always by Judith McNaught

"In this beloved novel, bestselling author Judith McNaught powerfully brings to life the fiery passion of a free-spirited American beauty and a troubled lord. Theirs is one of McNaught's most masterful and moving love stories." (from the publisher)

my thoughts:

Judith McNaught is a new-to-me author, and I thoroughly enjoyed this introduction to her romance writings. She has a very engaging writing style and a fast-moving plot, and I will defintely be reading more of McNaught's novels.

Set in England in 1815, Lord Jason Fielding is rich, powerful, arrogant, and married to an exquisitely beautiful and shallow woman.....she spends most of her time in the arms of other men, and Lord Fielding couldn't care less. Theirs is a miserable relationship, and the only thing in the world that Jason loves is his little son, Jamie. His life is one that is tortured and haunted by painful childhood secrets and a cold and unfaithful wife.

Victoria Seaton is a distant cousin of Lord Fielding that is being raised in America by her English mother and American father. She is a spirited and kind-hearted soul and in love with her childhood sweetheart, Andrew Bainbridge. Together, they plan their future and intend to one day marry.

When tragedy occurs for both Lord Feilding and Victoria, fate steps in and places Victoria on a boat to Wakefield,to the beautiful English estate owned by her notorious cousin, Jason Fielding. It is here, at Wakefield, that Victoria comes to learn of her mother's sorrowful and star-crossed past, and she is embraced by her uncle, Charles, who would love nothing more than to have her married to Lord Fielding. Her uncle devises a plan to announce their betrothal without their knowledge or consent. However, Jason wants nothing to do with her, and Victoria is confident that Andrew will still be her husband one day.

Victoria is confused by her feelings for Jason...she is frightened of his chilling and arrogant demeanor, but is drawn to him and senses his hidden pain. He, too, finds that Victoria stirs conflicting emotions in him; she is beautiful and desirable, but still in love with another man. Jason is not the kind of man to fall in love, but once he does, it will be for always.

Many lively, three-dimensional characters and lies, treachery, and family secrets make this a very enjoyable tale of love and passion.

4/5 stars

Title: Once and Always
Author: Judith McNaught
375 pages
Pocket Books
genre: historical romance


Julie at Outlandish Dreaming said...

I've loved everything I've read by McNaught so far (only two to date), but this one is coming up fast on my TBR list - have you read Whitney yet?

Joanne said...

Hi, Julie -- No, I haven't read Whitney, but I saw your recommendation of Judith McNaught and thought I would give her a try, and I was really pleasantly surprised. I have Almost Heaven on my TBR coming up soon.

Have you checked out Lauren Willig's recommended reading lists on her website? Since I enjoy Willig's writing so much (and she is strongly influenced by what she reads), I thought I'd try some of her favorite books...she has a few Judith McNaught books, with Almost Heaven as one of them. She has a really great list of historical romances and historical fiction selections, although some of them are a little older and hard to find -- but I love those oldies but goodies.

Julie at Outlandish Dreaming said...

I'll go check Willig's HF selections out, Goodreads has a lot of great ones too.

Anonymous said...


Favorite Period Dramas

Mount TBR

Joanne's to-read book montage

On a Highland Shore
A Light on the Veranda
The Queen's Vow: A Novel Of Isabella Of Castile
The Edwardians
Maisie Dobbs
Howards End
Lady's Maid
Instruments Of Darkness
When Maidens Mourn
Where Shadows Dance
What Remains of Heaven
Where Serpents Sleep
Why Mermaids Sing
When Gods Die
Before Ever After
The Sugar Queen
Garden Spells
After the Night

Joanne's favorite books »