I'm reviewing a historical romance I just finished up early this morning. Like, really early. Long story. Anyway, the only reason I was reading that early was because I could not wait to finish this book. So I hope you guys check out the book and enjoy my review! Oh, and I will review The Goblin King once I'm done re-reading it. I finished it last week, but I think I wasn't paying attention or something because I feel like I missed things. So I want to re-read it before I post a review. So for now, Once and Always.
Summary from Goodreads
Mass Market Paperback, 400 pages
Published April 25th 2006
I totally enjoyed this read. The writing style was smooth and fluid, and the humour was laugh out loud--literally. There was one point in the novel I must have stopped and just laughed for about three minutes straight because it was so funny. I love it when romance novels can give me a good laugh along with a sizzling story line.
And Jason and Victoria's romance was sizzling. These two were at odds from the outset. Jason is furious that his father has announced their nuptials in the papers, and Victoria thinks Jason is the last man on earth any woman would ever dream of marrying. She finds him arrogant, cold, rude and very handsome. And, Jason who is determined not to marry, can't help but find Victoria a vision of beauty who also possesses a spirited nature enough to challenge him and a kind and caring heart. And although neither of them wants to marry the other, they are both very attracted to one another, and learn to care for each other. So, rather against their better judgement these two decide to get married--for the simple reason that they love each other, even though neither of them really realize it themselves.
Of course, their marriage is fraught with difficulties. First of all, Jason can't admit to himself that he loves Victoria. He acts wildly furious and jealous on his wedding night, hurting Victoria, and Victoria in turn demands a divorce. Victoria has led a simple and sheltered life, and she doesn't quite understand London society and some of what she says and does in the following days further alienates Jason. It's not until she finally discovers the horrible truth about his childhood that she comes to understand Jason a little better, and to really let down the barriers in her own heart enough to full acknowledge to herself that she doesn't just like Jason, but that she really truly madly loves him.
Jason, for his part, is sensitive enough to feel deeply hurt by Victoria on their wedding day, but he's ashamed of himself as well for hurting her, and cursing himself for letting another woman worm her way into his life to make it a living hell. But he can't help caring for Victoria, and he tries to meet Victoria half way in making their marriage an amiable one. He showers Victoria with jewels each time he takes her to bed, which of course Victoria hates, but that Jason figures is all women really want from him. He doesn't believe he's lovable, and it takes Victoria breaking down and telling him that she loves and admires him for everything he's endured for him to really understand that he's keeping up a barrier between them that is hurting them both and to tell Victoria how much he really does love her. It was a raw sort of moment, and it was beautiful to see Jason as his true self the way his father and oldest friend had told Victoria he was: the most loving, devoted man she could want. It was a moment that devastated me.
The second difficulty in their marriage is a man from Victoria's past named Andrew. And I almost cried to see Jason so utterly broken when he thought he has lost Victoria, but luckily it was a scene that quickly turned to a joyous one. If I can get my hands on more of Ms. McNaught's novels, I will definitely read them because this book is one I truly adored. It's going on my favourites shelves!
"Lord, girl! Where do you get such ideas? His lordship don't need them powders, and you can tell everyone in the laundry I said so!"
When she began kissing each scar, Jason rolled onto his side and jerked her into his arms. "I love you,"he whispered agonizedly..."I love you so much."
5 glittering stars