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Once and Always (1) (The Sequels series) af…
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Once and Always (1) (The Sequels series) (original 1987; udgave 1990)

af Judith McNaught (Forfatter)

Serier: Sequels series (book 1), Whitney, My Love (Book 2)

MedlemmerAnmeldelserPopularitetGennemsnitlig vurderingOmtaler
1,1121313,682 (4.04)7
"Once and Always," one of Judith McNaught's most masterful and moving love stories, powerfully brings to life the fiery passion of a free-spirited American beauty and a troubled English lord. Suddenly orphaned and alone, Victoria Seaton sails the vast ocean, eager to reclaim her heritage at Wakefield, the sumptuous English estate of a distant cousin, the notorious Lord Jason Fielding. Bewildered by his arrogance yet drawn to his panther-like grace, she senses the painful memories that smolder in his eyes. When he gathers her at last into his arms, arousing a sweet, insistent hunger, they wed and are embraced by fierce, consuming joy -- free from the past's cruel grasp. Then, in a moment of anguish, Victoria discovers the treachery at the heart of their love . . . a love she had dreamed would triumph not just once, but always.… (mere)
Medlem:dawnsal74
Titel:Once and Always (1) (The Sequels series)
Forfattere:Judith McNaught (Forfatter)
Info:Pocket Books (1990), 400 pages
Samlinger:Dit bibliotek
Vurdering:
Nøgleord:Ingen

Detaljer om værket

Once and Always af Judith McNaught (Author) (1987)

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» Se også 7 omtaler

Viser 1-5 af 13 (næste | vis alle)
Though predictable, the plots still warmed the heart! I’ve read this many moons ago but I totally didn’t recall it, only towards the ending where it tinge with familiarity. Definitely loving the warmth by JM but the start felt too lengthy and the ending did feel a little rushed. Anyway, overall it’s slushy lovey dovey!

Here's my full review:
http://www.sholee.net/2018/04/mpov-once-and-always-sequels-1.html ( )
  Sholee | Sep 9, 2021 |
2.5 stars ( )
  mitabird | Jun 10, 2018 |
Most of the way through the book I was so absorbed in it that I though for sure it was a 5 star book. The last 50 pages or so, unfortunately, dropped the book to 4. Still a good book, bordering on very good. While written 20 years ago it does have a slight dated feel but definitely not too bad. Things that were "accepted" in the 80's in romance books are not the norm now. For example, a rape scene. Many modern romances do have rapes in the books but back in the day the rape was usually a whole Luke and Laura from General Hospital thing instead of today's rape scenes being about the heroine being raped and the hero coming to her emotional or physical rescue. I really had to take the book for what it was back in the 80's and try not to compare it to my today standards.

This alone was not why I rated the book a 4 instead of a 5. I really liked Victoria. She was strong, intelligent and witty. I loved Jason (tortured hero anyone?) and completely understood his actions. I could see Tory's influence in Jason and could see him opening up to Tory and experiencing fun and laughter that his life had been missing. Then something would happen and set him back to square one. After seeing this pattern happen through a good chunk of the book I was pretty surprised that towards the end, it was if a switch was flipped and he had some kind of life altering epiphany which I felt I had missed. Oh there was an epiphany, but his about face came before it. Of course he declares his love for Tory but then says to her that he has loved her since she arrived at his doorstep. Yet no declaration of him admitting he was a shit and the reason why (maybe scared?). His background, which had been explained previously, was to just explain away his being an ass with no inner reflection on his part. Totally 80's.

Together I thought they were fantastic friends. Unfortunately I found their interactions as friends part of the book was better then once they were married. Once they were married the friendship ended. This was part of McNaught's plot plan but I would have loved to see more romance once the I Do's were stated. These things might smack of a very low rating but honestly most of the book was just fabulous. I would encourage others to try this book unless of course rape scenes makes them too squeamish. ( )
  ChristinaT. | Dec 3, 2016 |
I liked the book okay enough yet it bored me to pieces at times. I think the author did a good job developing the characters and the book was a pretty good emotional ride yet I found myself wanting less of some things and more of others. I know strange as it sounds I did not love the book nor did I enjoy the emotions that evoked. It was interesting enough yet I felt that it lacked in story line at times and when it began to bore me I had to put it down. It took me a while to read it but it was not horrible. ( )
  Angel.Carter | Aug 11, 2016 |
Off the bat, I have to note that I'm actually supposed to be getting ready to go to work. But as it's Saturday, and I'm not scheduled for a set time, I literally cannot focus on getting ready until I write about this horrible book.

I don't know that I can put in the same category as The Lion's Lady, which is the most recent book that just made me feel unholy rage. Instead this one just made me feel unspeakably sad. Perhaps, it inspired sadness rather than rage because it seems to be nearly universally popular and loved and was even recommended by one of my favorite romance authors.
To give a frame for this rant (I don't think I can accurately label it a review, it will be filled with spoilers), I do need to give a trigger warning for abuse and rape. To further frame this rant the general idea of this novel is:

Victoria Seaton is the eldest daughter to an Irish born physician and her "mysterious past" English mother in New York, USA. She is, loosely, betrothed to her childhood best friend, Andrew Bainbridge. His mother disapproves, and her father lives in fear of her ending up in a loveless marriage like he's in. Because, you see, we're introduced to her with her father drunkenly seizing her mother and begging her "not to deny him again" all observed by Victoria. Her father then begs her to never marry someone that does not love her as much as she loves them because it's hell. (And also, she'll never get sex.)
But then Andrew gets shipped off to Switzerland and France for a while (by his meddling mother) and while he's away, both of Victoria's parents die in a tragic accident and as her dying words, her mother requests that Victoria and her younger sister be shipped to England to live with the Duchess of Claremont and the Duke of Atherton. The Duchess is easily enough understood, she's their great-grandmother. The Duke is more mysterious as he seems to be merely a very distant cousin.

Which introduces us to the male lead in this, because frankly, to call him the hero of the novel would probably make me cry. Jason Field, Marquess of Wakefield was married to a "bitch" and a "slut" who eventually left him permanently with her lover and her and Jason's young son. In her escape attempt, her ship went down and everyone on board died, including little Jamie. The only person Jason's ever loved. I guess the part that bugs me so much is that we're never really given any idea of if Jason was at least a tolerable or decent human being before his "bitch and slut" of a wife cuckolded him and ran off. But I can assure you that afterwards he is neither tolerable nor decent.

He is the "by-blow" of the Duke of Atherton, who pawned him off on his religious zealot brother and sister-in-law to raise in India. Unbeknownst to the Duke, Jason was abused horribly. Not to make light of his backstory, which is horrific, but it's presented very much as, "This is why he's such a shitty person and IT'S TOTALLY COOL because his past was so fucked up." Which, sorry, no. There are limits to the extent of which I'm like, "This is justifiable distrust because of past trauma."

Victoria ends up in the care of Jason and the Duke and the Duke's fondest dream is that Victoria and Jason marry because -- ah yes, the Duke was madly in love with Victoria's mother when they were young, but he rejected her to save her and she tempestuously ran off with Victoria's father to America.

To cut out a whole middle part of Jason treating Victoria like garbage and then nicely and then like garbage and then nicely, Victoria is convinced that her betrothed is going to come get her and take her back to America. Jason and the Duke are trying to marry her off to someone rich and titled. She's refusing. But then she receives a letter from Andrew's mother telling her that Andrew married his Swiss cousin. Victoria is understandably devastated (and embarrassed). But then, the Duke receives a letter from Andrew himself stating that his mother was lying. The Duke also intercepts a letter to Victoria saying that Andrew is coming to get her and marry her.

Naturally, he fakes a heart attack and pushes Victoria and Jason into marrying as his "dying wish". Victoria believes he's dying, Jason knows he's not. Yet, Jason agrees to it. This is when the lovely last half of the book begins. I like to think of it as The Romance Novelist's Guide to Spousal Abuse. Victoria marries Jason even though she desperately does not want to, and almost runs at the altar. Jason realizes she almost runs away and so begins just...one event after another that left me feeling so very sad in my soul.

Victoria gets drunk in order to bolster her spirits since she has literally no idea what to expect from the marriage bed. (But she's a puker. Yay.) Jason, because he's a fucking idiot, thinks she's not a virgin. He gets pissed that she's drunk because she's PROBABLY just imagining he's Andrew and trying to get away with it. So he ... pretty brutally rapes her. In fact, that author took the time for Jason to note how dry and tight Victoria's "passage" was. It's only after Victoria sobbingly kicks Jason out of her room that he looks down and realizes that she was a virgin.

Does he apologize for this on any level? No. Instead he retreats and starts going back to his mistress. Victoria, understandably, wants nothing to do with him. Not surprisingly, this is eventually solved by good sex that Jason also all but forces on Victoria. Jason thinks you have to buy a woman's loyalty, though he believes no woman has any loyalty, so every time they have sex he leaves her expensive jewelry.
He also verbally abuses her almost constantly. And swings wildly from, "tolerable and kind of nice" to "horrifically abusive and cruel." I can't even remember which of the innumerable confrontations leads Victoria to running away for an evening and meeting up with Jason's old friend who explains to her the horrors of the abuse he lived with as a child. And they were horrific.

My biggest problem with this insanely problem-laden book is that, in the end, after Victoria realigns herself to be forgiving, and loving, and everything supportive, the final confrontation is MADDENING. Victoria starts to say "I love you" during/after sex. Jason doesn't WANT her love/doesn't believe in love (long suffering sigh). However, Victoria notes that he withholds her orgasm and draws it out until she finally says it and only then does he 'let her climax'. So he obviously NEEDS to be told he's loved, even if he doesn't KNOW he does. HOW SAD. (NO IT'S NOT SAD THIS IS INSANE.) Eventually, Victoria literally has a meltdown and just lets it all out to Jason. Who responds by essentially saying, "I'm sorry. I love you." THE END.

THAT IS ESSENTIALLY THE END. There is never any sort of actual apology for raping and abusing her for 390 some pages. It's just forgiven because every woman in Jason's life, of which there were TWO, TWO WHOLE WOMEN, has betrayed or abused him. So it's totally fine for him to blanketly abuse and hate every woman he comes across. Because he's sad. That's basically where the novel ends. He starts saying I love you back, she believes him, and I guess we're to just accept that he'll probably continue to abuse her occasionally, but it's all well and good because he had a bad childhood.
This book just made me so sad.
  dukedukegoose | Jan 26, 2015 |
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"Once and Always," one of Judith McNaught's most masterful and moving love stories, powerfully brings to life the fiery passion of a free-spirited American beauty and a troubled English lord. Suddenly orphaned and alone, Victoria Seaton sails the vast ocean, eager to reclaim her heritage at Wakefield, the sumptuous English estate of a distant cousin, the notorious Lord Jason Fielding. Bewildered by his arrogance yet drawn to his panther-like grace, she senses the painful memories that smolder in his eyes. When he gathers her at last into his arms, arousing a sweet, insistent hunger, they wed and are embraced by fierce, consuming joy -- free from the past's cruel grasp. Then, in a moment of anguish, Victoria discovers the treachery at the heart of their love . . . a love she had dreamed would triumph not just once, but always.

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