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To Have and To Hold (Wyckerley Trilogy, #2)
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To Have and To Hold (Wyckerley Trilogy #2)

3.9  ·  Rating Details ·  1,463 Ratings  ·  146 Reviews
Suave, cynical, and too handsome for his own good, Sebastian Verlaine never expects to become a magistrate judging the petty crimes of his tenants and neighbors. Nor can the new Viscount D’Aubrey foresee that, when a fallen woman appears before him, he’ll find himself beguiled against all reason to alter her terrible fate....

Rachel Wade has served time in prison for her hu
Paperback, 384 pages
Published March 4th 2003 by NAL Trade (first published 1995)
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Wicked Incognito Now
Okay. I'm not going to finish reading this book because I'm just not in the right sort of mood for it. It's disgusting me too much. However, it IS well-written and I finally understand why it's such a divisive book.

Here's the deal....

Imagine you find a puppy on the side of the road. Someone threw it out of their car and left it there, broken and injured, to starve to death alone. Suppose it's obvious that the puppy was mentally and physically abused prior to being thrown out of the car. You find
 Danielle The Book Huntress (Self-Proclaimed Book Ninja)
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nov 21, 2009 Ridley rated it really liked it
This is a tough book for me to rate. It's definitely somewhere between a four and a five for me.

On the one hand, this book is a phenomenal character study. Too often authors use the term "rake" as shorthand for a fun-loving libertine. When Gaffney uses the term here, she means business. Sebastian Verlaine is a rake of the first order. Debauched, selfish, lazy, and privileged, Sebastian uses the people around him for his own enjoyment. As the book begins, there's nothing lovable about him. He's n
Meredith Duran
Jan 26, 2015 Meredith Duran rated it it was amazing
I always hesitate to recommend this book, for reasons that other reviews discuss in depth. It's probably the most troubling romance novel that I've ever adored.

It's brilliantly written, and there's a lucidity to the language, a subtlety to the psychological nuances of both characters, that rivets me every time I read it.

The fact that it remains in my personal top five, along with Bliss by Judy Cuevas, suggests that I've got a taste for romance novels about men I wouldn't touch in real life with
Dec 07, 2011 Mskychick rated it did not like it
What a complete and utter sh#*head the man in this book is! He "saves" a woman released from prison and makes her his housekeeper in order to sleep with her. She is terrified, and can't say no because she would lose her position and be sent back to gaol. When he is trying to force her into sleeping with her, he tells her to just submit- "don't let this be rape.". Oh yes, coerced sex is much better than rape.
This book made me furious, and I had to stop halfway through. What utter tripe. And an c
Jess the Romanceaholic
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Tammy Walton Grant
Just as good this reading as the first time. This book is hard to describe. It's a historical romance that's not really a historical romance, if that makes sense.

The hero's behaviour borders on reprehensible at the beginning, if he had been written even a smidge differently he would have been unredeemable. As it is, it takes a lot to do it, but the author puts us front row and center so we see it happening just as Sebastien does. Rachel is beautifully drawn as well.

The way the book is written
I um-ed and ah-ed about the rating for this for a bit, and I'm going for 4.5 stars rounded up, which I equate with an A-.

I read two books for this month's TBR Challenge of which this was the first. The prompt was "Kickin' it Old School", which meant reading a book that was at least ten years old. I chose this one because I've had it around for a while, but also because I know from reading reviews that it's a "marmite" book (you either love it or you hate it!) and I felt like reading something th
Sep 06, 2011 boogenhagen rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
You know how, in many historicals, there's this bad guy who the heroine is forced to be in close contact with? Maybe her guardian, or the man her family is pushing her to marry, or her employer--whoever he is, he wants her, and takes advantage of the fact that she's under his control. The hero has to rescue the heroine, because this guy can't be reasoned with. That guy? He's the hero of To Have and to Hold.

Look, I like morally ambiguous characters as much as the next person, but there's nothing
This is the second book by Patricia Gaffney that I've read, the other was Lily, and imo they're really good books. In this one Patricia Gaffney doesn't write the typical regency or bodice ripper, this was a different and new theme for me.

Rachel (h) was raised in a upper middle class family from a small town, her parents only asperation for her was to marry and marry well. Being the dutiful daughter that she was she was married off to her best friends father at the age of 18. Unfortunatly for her
May 29, 2011 Jan rated it really liked it
I recently requested recommendations for realistic, gritty medieval romances, but this book definitely falls under gritty regencies. I really liked it.

Sebastian is a true rake. Not the charming, rake due to a hard upbringing, but really good underneath kind of rake. He's someone who does nasty and even some despicable things simply because he's bored and can do them because of his position in life.

He takes up the position of magistrate because it seemed like something to elevate his boredom wit
I see why this book is so widely renowned. Patricia Gaffney is an awesome writer. I was weary in the beginning because I don't really like it when the heroine goes through too much pain. Spending ten years of her life in jail and coming out looking starved and haggard was not my idea of a good start to a romance. I'm not a reader that really likes tear jerkers and I guess I lean more to a lighter kind of fun loving read. At the time I started this book I wasn't really in a happy place so to ...more
Jul 08, 2016 Melissa rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
I've been sitting here for an hour trying to think of how to start this review, and I still don't think I'm ready. I probably need to sit with it for a while longer, maybe reread some parts of the book and just soak it all in.

I can say now, however, that I loved this book. Loved it. Can feel it crowding up against Flowers from the Storm on my list of favorite historical romances. I know, some of you are gasping right now! I mean it, though. The depth and complexity of characterization, the beau
Jul 19, 2016 Ashley rated it really liked it
Recommended to Ashley by: Melissa
This book had a wonderful heroine and lovely writing. That said, the hero never really came to life for me and I never got swept up in the relationship between him and the heroine. As such, I never fully connected with the story.

It's not even that I didn't buy the hero's redemption in the latter half of the book, more that I didn't really care about it. He seemed to simply fill whatever role the story required him to fill, which in the end made him frustratingly mutable and difficult to know. Re
Sebastian Verlaine is just another bored, jaded aristocrat. Having packed his now former mistress off to London, he's facing the ever-so-boring task of sitting with two other magistrates to judge the latest batch of baddies in his small parish. One of those is Rachel Wade, recently paroled from a ten year stint for murdering her husband. She's got no family left and not able to get a job, so just what are they to do with her? Bored, jaded Sebastian decides Rachel has serious mistress potential, ...more
Mar 21, 2016 Ira rated it really liked it
3.75 stars.
Well, it's a good read not as dark as I expected thought.

The Hero, you won't call him that on the first half of the book.
He just spoiled rich guy with too much money and time on his hand and felling bored.
Nothing good to say about him, he took the heroine and give her a job because he wanted her, as simply as that.

The heroine? She wasn't stupid, she knew from the start what he want from her and kind of resigned with the situation, because the other choice is unthinkable, she could ret
 ❀ Minesha ❀
Ahh, finally a story where the hero is a rake, cad and miscreant in every sense of word.

And the heroine who had been in prison for ten years was so beautifully and realistically depicted. Her wariness, pain, no care if anyone uses her body anymore, lost hope and lost pride.

I loved the transformation of the hero and then how the heroine began to fall in love with the changed man.

This book actually felt like it was set in the historical time period. The way prisoners were treated, the rich gettin
Alex Morrison
Jul 18, 2016 Alex Morrison rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Alex by: Melissa
Actual Rating: 3.5 stars

“Ingrate. He’s known me longer— ten minutes at least— but he comes to you for protection.”

“If you wore skirts,” she said consolingly, “I’m sure he would come to you. And don’t forget, you put him in a box and I let him out of it. He’s a very smart dog; he knows who his friends are.”

Gaffney's talent is undeniable and she has created a wonderful heroine in Rachel. I have a pretty big tolerance for a hero's ~questionable behavior in historical romances, but I am just not su
Jun 25, 2011 Denise rated it liked it
3 1/2 stars actually... While I liked this story, I liked the first in the series much better. The first half of the book really bugged me. I HATED the way Sebastian treated Rachel. Umm she said NO she said STOP. She just got out of prison after a 10 year sentence ( wrongly accused) of killing her sadist sicko husband. She was a wreck and he took complete advantage of her. Ok, he did redeem himself, but I had a hard time forgiving him. On the other hand, it was very well written and the ...more
Elizabeth Tai
Nov 07, 2016 Elizabeth Tai rated it did not like it
I came to this book utterly clueless about the controversy behind it. I saw a blogger recommending this book highly, saying that it was more than just a romance, complex, and intriguing. It sounded like something that I'd appreciate. I do love my romance novels, but after a dozen, they begin blurring with each other in their similarities.

It began so well- Gaffney is an amazing writer, and I was so amazed that I found a new writer at last!

Then THAT SCENE happened. I was in utter disbelief. Are y
Oct 31, 2013 Eunice added it
Recommends it for: Emily Lynch
(I'm not going to rate this book because I will be unjustifiably lowering the rating of what is, given the genre, a pretty good read.) I mean, I knew from the start it wasn't my cup of tea.

So Aarushi and I were chatting to a friend (let's call her 'C'), and C said she loved a good romance novel, but she called herself a 'Romance-Elitist', meaning she only read those with good quality writing and storylines. Then she asked if 50 Shades was worth reading, given how popular it is. Obviously we said
Oct 08, 2014 LaFleurBleue rated it really liked it
This book should come with a warning. Beware: unusual content that might disturb some readers.
I was especially astounded at the way the relationship started between the two lead characters, multi-faceted and maturing are 2 of the words that come to mind for both of them. Honestly I wondered how the author would manage to have the hero redeem himself and how the heroine could overcome the way he manipulated and played with her in the first part. But indeed all worked out, with as a bonus, some o
Feb 05, 2016 Jan rated it it was amazing
I loved the first book in the series by Ms. Gaffney. And I adore this second book! What an incredible job at showing the transformation of two wounded people. Read the series in order for the best reading enjoyment:)
Feb 10, 2016 Kat rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
This one was even more extraordinary than the first book in this series. Didn't think that would be possible. I found Sebastian to be was this man the hero of the story, I wondered. But, ahhhh, redemption! And it was beautiful.
Dec 22, 2014 Jan rated it it was amazing
Shelves: abuse, historical
4.5 Stars
Jun 26, 2013 Brie rated it liked it
Originally posted at Romance Around the Corner

Earlier this year it was announced that Penguin would reissue Gaffney’s Wickerley trilogy through InterMix, their electronic-only Romance imprint. These books are a beloved and memorable part of the genre, yet I had not read them before. I confess that I was mildly intrigued by To Have and To Hold, the second book in the series, but unlike the rest of Romanceland, I was not eager to read them. But enthusiasm is catching and after my friends started t
This was a really gripping read which draws the reader in from the outset.

The hero Sebastian starts off as a ruthless debaucher and the story is very much one of his path to redemption.
The heroine, Rachel was wrongly convicted of her husband's murder. The husband had been violent and sexually abusive towards her, and in light of this she was sentenced to 10 years in prison, rather than death. Rachel is traumatised by her period of imprisonment and becomes totally withdrawn , describing herself
Mar 06, 2015 JiEun rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Predictable book with references to BDSM and sexual abuse. Rachel Wade was a young 18-year-old girl with her future ahead of her when she married her best friend's father. Remember, this takes place in the 1800s so not uncommon back then for an 18-year-old to marry someone who is 35 or 38. He turns out to be a sadistic BDSM bastard and is murdered during their first week of marriage. Rachel is charged with his murder and during her trial she reveals her sexual abuse. So, because they feel sorry ...more
Jul 04, 2013 R. added it
Shelves: anxiety-inducing
The second part of the story would be a 4 stars. But it's irrelevant how much I liked certain parts, the characterization, the way the story seemed to flow. I don't care if he's redeemed and disgusted with himself, there's only so much I would forgive a 'rake' before I give up on him, and I don't know about the others but rape is a big freaking red line. once crossed, there is no coming back.

The reason I refuse to rate this badly (aside from the fact that I loved the narration, and that it got m
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Patricia Gaffney was born in Tampa, Florida, and grew up in Bethesda, Maryland, a suburb of Washington, D.C. She earned a bachelor’s degree in English and philosophy from Marymount College in Tarrytown, New York, and also studied literature at Royal Holloway College of the University of London, at George Washington University, and at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

After college, G
More about Patricia Gaffney...

Other Books in the Series

Wyckerley Trilogy (3 books)
  • To Love and to Cherish (Wyckerley Trilogy #1)
  • Forever & Ever (Wyckerley Trilogy #3)

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