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Once a Princess (Cardinia's Royal Family, #1)
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Once a Princess

(Cardinia's Royalty #1)

4.08  ·  Rating details ·  10,837 ratings  ·  339 reviews
Once Upon A Time...In a rustic Mississippi tavern, a beautiful exiled princess was forced to dance for the pleasure of others unaware of her regal birthright...and infuriated by a magnificent golden-eyed devil who crossed an ocean to possess her. From A Far Off Land... A bold and brazen prince came to America to claim his promised bride. But the spirited vixen spurned his ...more
Paperback, 432 pages
Published June 1st 1991 by Avon (first published January 1st 1991)
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Celia not necessary, can be read independently

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Average rating 4.08  · 
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 ·  10,837 ratings  ·  339 reviews

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Apr 07, 2012 rated it it was ok
I was sixteen when I read this. My aunt gave me some hardback romances, and this one was one of them. Memory is sketchy, but I filled it in with LOLzy bits and comic relief.

I remember something about a tavern wench with a birthmark being a long lost princess(lol, I wonder if that would hold up in court. I need to collect my long, lost inheritance!), and her being rather lovely, if it weren't for those pesky men harassing her, so she ashes up her face to look like a leper and men are teh scarez o
Theresa Contreras
This book had me ready to claw my eyes out at 430am, but at the same time had me ready to call my husband home early so he could, er, help me out! Damn it was good, hot, well written, sexy... I could go on forever! A must read, a must own and re-read also! The hero, even with all of his power is gentle, sweet, and super sexy, he's protective, loyal, honest, and courageous for any man let alone he is a KING! The heroine is young and lead a really rough life, she's so strong, and I really admired ...more
Normally, I would never have liked this book. I mean, abducted heroines and obtuse heroes are so not my thing. Yet, I liked this.

I read the 2nd book before I picked up this and only convinced myself that I want to read this today, this morning. It was like a Cinderella story with a transcontinental setting and a Prince (or King) UnCharming.

The hero, Stephen is one angry man. So, generally you don't find a HR hero who has anger management issues (to the point of being dangerous and borderline ab
Erika B. (SOS BOOKS)
Jun 01, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: adult-read, spicy
The fact that the main hero uses kissing as an anger outlet got me like

Mmmk....does this happen to anybody in reality out there in the Goodreads universe? When I'm angry I go driving and usually find me some donuts or something! We all deal with emotions in different ways I guess! I am currently on a quest to find an alternative to Julia Quinn (she is queen aka hard to replace) because I've read all her books...almost. So I gave Ms Lindsey a whirl! I will give it to this book-there were some fun
Oct 15, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Book 1: Once A Princess
Stefan Barany is to become King and must go and retrieve his future queen from America, where she was hidden as a baby to keep her alive. Her father, the King at that time, had put to death the son of a Baron for murder, in turn the Baron promised to kill off all of the Janacek's, and the feud and deaths continued. All but Tatiana survived because she was sent away.

Tanya had a terrible life. The people who took her in as a baby owned a tavern and treated her like
Nicole R
Let me sum this up quickly before I dive into my mini-rant: soon-to-be King from Eastern Europe is betrothed to a princess who was sent to America when she was 5 months old to escape a blood feud with some crazy mother f-ers. Said STBK (soon-to-be king....) travels to Mississippi to find said princess who was to have been raised in the lap of luxury to come home and bear him an heir while he continues to bone every chick in the joint. Imagine his surprise when tragedy had struck and this woman e ...more
The first in the Cardinia's Royal Family series by Johanna Lindsey. I loved this book. I thought it was hilarious. Tanya (Tatiana) works in her guardian's tavern with high hopes of inheriting it someday. All hope of that dies when a group of men come and kidnap her to take back to their country. After all she is their long lost princess and its time for her to take her place by the prince's side.
Debbie DiFiore
Jan 01, 2015 rated it really liked it
One of my favorites

This is one of my favorite books. I have read it several times and it just keeps getting better. The heroine is really a princess but doesn't know it. She works in a tavern and had been mistreated her whole life. She is really beautiful but camouflages it by using makeup and ashes. The H is a prince who has to find his betrothed in America. She was sent there for her protection as a baby but unfortunately her caretaker died and she was brought up by a mean man and his wife. Sh
Stephanie (Jump)
Jun 16, 2016 rated it it was ok
Ok in truthfulness I didn't read the whole story. I could barely get into this one. I just didn't enjoy it. This was one of her higher rated books too.

Our boy genius hero
We meet our hero first, and after the first scene with his father, we meet the evil OW the mistress - and they have sex offpage. It's not descriptive. But boy is this lady ever present - more about that later.

Hero has scars and he is obsessively insecure about them. We learn he uses sex to get rid of his anger (so mature), and
Oct 21, 2013 rated it really liked it
Joanna Lindsey has a wonderful way of spinning a tale. Tanya is a serving girl in a tavern in America and doesn't know that she is really a princess from the European country of Cardinia. That's weird. How can she not know? Well because she was taken away from that country as an infant, so she would not me murdered like the rest of her royal family. She was betrothed to the Prince of Cardinia, Stefan, at birth so he is given the task of finding her and taking her back to Cardinia so they can mar ...more
Chitra *CJ*
Feb 16, 2017 rated it really liked it
Another good pre sleep Johanna Lindsey read!
Heavily recommended due to me being in book funk, I picked up this series by JL.. and I wasn't disappointed.
Tatiana works as a bar keeper to escape the beatings and sour mood of her keeper.
Four men, Stefan, Vasili, Serge and Lazar intrude her almost there freedom, when her dancer falls sick and she falls in their clutches. All have different personalities and all are in the lookout for a royalty.
They believe she is a long lost princess and take her a
Mar 07, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: anyone who enjoys historical romance
I really enjoy this book, and it does not matter how many times I read it there are always parts that make me laugh out loud.

This is the story of Tanya who grew up poor and working for a mean spirited man named Dobbs in his Tavern. When Dobbs becomes ill, Tanya’s luck seems to be on the rise as she is able to run the Tavern and finally have a taste of freedom. That is until Stefan walks into her life with his three friends.

They have come to collect Tanya home to Cardinia to get married to Stefa
Did Johanna Lindsey even write this? It lacked her usual passion, fun and excitement. Hmmm, maybe aliens took over her body with the intention of destroying Earth's culture one mediocre book at a time.

This is clearly a tribute to the Sleeping Beauty fairytale, but Once a Princess just isn't romantic or fun. For starters, it took Tanya a loooooooooong time to believe in her true identity as the lost princess of Cardinia. This became repetitive fast. It would have been more fun if she'd embraced
BJ Rose
Mar 09, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Tanya works in a Mississippi tavern - with dreams of soon owning it herself - when along comes a small group of very arrogant men who tell her she's a lost princess and they're going to take her to her destiny. Yeah, sure, what intelligent woman would believe that line?! So she does her best not to go with them, and they do their best to make sure she does. Pretty much a foregone conclusion, since there are 4 of them against one determined, able-to-take-care-of-herself feisty gal.

Since this is a
Sue Lyndon
I finally got around to reading this last week...and yet again Johanna Lindsey blew me away. If you like romance stories that begin with a betrothal/arranged marriage and the hero and heroine start out at odds with one another, you'll probably like this book. The hero is very dominant and determined to bring the heroine back to his country, even if it means chasing the heroine and dragging her back kicking and screaming. Don't worry, they fall in love along the way. The only thing that might bot ...more
May 20, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2014, johanna-lindsey
The beginning too slow or fast, I don't know. But, I can't keep on. Rest for a while, after that, I read again and finished in one night. Huhu. The story a little complicated to me, especially at the beginning, maybe I was wrong because my english not so good.

Tanya is a princess, lost from her parents. Raised by a stranger whose claim they were her parents. After sometimes, when she has fully grown up, came someone said she is a princess and his wife to be. Never want to believe it, she took esc
Apr 20, 2010 rated it it was amazing
I've had this book sitting in my garage since I was a toddler and just picked it up yesterday out of boredom. I actually found it quite a good book. Although all the hints are there at first to how the outcome is going to turn out, I didn't quite catch them as I was so consumed with the whole love story. Tanya shows to be not as naive as they picture her and proves to be a better woman from how she was raised. I was quite disappointed at how fast Stefan and his fellas were to judge the young Tan ...more
Dec 01, 2010 rated it it was amazing

In a rustic Mississippi tavern, a beautiful exiled princess was forced to dance for the pleasure of others--unaware of her regal birthright ... and infuriated by a magnificent, golden-eyed devil who crossed an ocean to possess her.

A bold and brazen prince came to America to claim his promised bride. But the spirited vixen spurned his affections while inflaming his royal blood with passion's fire... impelling virile Stefan Barany to take in sen
Zehan Ilyana
this was my mom's favorite book all time.. dan ianya menular kepada aku.. aku suka cerita ini.. aku suka cerita ni lebih dari novel2 judith mcnaught.
i dont know how to review this book. but this book is awesome! first time baca ni, masa tahun 2006..and seriously, tak pernah jemu baca sampailah sekarang...
i love this book just like how my mama loved this book...:)
Annamaria Apria
Mar 18, 2011 rated it it was amazing
love this better than alex+vasili story
tanya is strong woman
this the first romantic story that made me laugh
really funny and addorable
stefan not perfect man like other story, but made him more cool, dangerous, and funny
i dont believe about his way to vents his anger
4 to 4.5 stars!!!! Move over, chick-lit heroines like Princess Diaries, here's a deep, entertaining, and to a certain extent, believeable masterpiece that you all will always aspire to be.

I had 2 books available to me at the library and I was deciding between this book and the other. I'm glad I picked this one. I can't even remember the other book's name.

The plot here is pretty simple: a princess, the last in line to the royal throne, has been betrothed since infancy to the crown prince - whose
Nov 23, 2008 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: anyone who likes really trashy romance
Honestly, I was prepared to love this book. No such luck. It was entertaining at times but some of the language struck me as highly unlikely for 1835. And one line that stuck in my head was uttered by Tanya, the long-lost princess turned barmaid, something about being unable to understand why they kept thinking she was a whore. I'm thinking it was because they found her in a tavern in Mississippi where even the ugliest female tavern workers were propositioned by anything male. For some reason, t ...more
Novia Liu
Feb 09, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: stay-in-heart
well, this one is my favorite from all johanna lindsey books!
I'm enjoying when stephan and the squad got a hard time with tanya, when she always plan to escape...
especially when stephan catch Tanya backs
wiuhhh.. what a tension~~

I like the nickname that Tanya give to Vasili
"an arrogant peacock"
Tanya really something!!
OMG. I really like Tanya character ♥

and many unexpected scenes that I never imagined! make this book really interesting
May 08, 2013 rated it really liked it
I just absolutely loved Tanya, now one of my favorite heroines of all time. I did get frustrated with Tanya and Stefan when it seemed like there would be no resolution with their relationship. I felt cheated out of the wedding and the wedding night too.
Jun 26, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: regency, royals
Solid 4 the adventures of two headstrong characters had me laughing at their antics. Nice rags to riches tale where our gal was resourceful and disbelieving.
Ashley F
Apr 26, 2013 rated it it was ok
This review was posted at Tsuki’s Book Blog on June 3, 2013

I'm not much of an old-skool romance reader but occasionally I want to understand where the genre came from and how it evolved. On top of that I heard Sarah Wendell rave about it on one of the DBSA podcasts. Well let me say it turned me off of old skool for awhile and this is from the girl who loved "The Flame and the Flower"

Tatiana is a abused barmaid. She's tantalizingly beautiful but dresses herself as the old hag unless
Jen Warren
Oct 15, 2014 rated it liked it
Once a Princess is the story of a girl who should have been born in splendor, but was instead raised in poverty and abuse. There are probably a million ways a setup like this could play out. Knowing Lindsey was the author left only one real option, which went like this:

Damaged, consistently insulting Stefan sets out to find the girl he was betrothed to as a child. He isn't looking forward to the reunion, especially after it becomes clear that his future wife might not have been gently reared. In
Olanrewaju Olarinde
A very interesting story.
I liked Stephan. Not as much I did Vasili when I read the second book but he was also a very good Hero except for his anger and how he woks through it. That just felt weird anytime it was mentioned.

Tanya, I didn't like as much as I did Alex (from the second book). She was okay and a bit interesting but not exciting. Funny enough, despite her upbringing, she does learn quickly to act self absorbed and privileged. These traits made me lose a good deal of interest in her.

Apr 16, 2011 rated it liked it
A story of Tanya, a girl who never knows that she's a princess or her true name, Tatiana until a barbaric guy came to rescue her from an abusive tavern-owner, whom she believed her father and her family. As the King Sandor's men came to take Tanya, is finally able to gain control of her life where she was barely better than a slave will soon be hers. Tanya learned that she is betrothed to the King's son, Vasili as told by Stefan without knowing that Stefan is actually the king's son. He has no d ...more
Tiera McMillian
Jun 16, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: march2020
Still love this after all these years! Such a good time. Have been having a blast spending quarantine time rereading through all my old favorites. This book took me way back, which is just what I needed in these dark times.

FMC Tatiana, is an unsung bad A. She puts up with no crap and causes her "captors" all kinds of hell as they attempt to drag her to her birth land to claim her birth rights and marry their king. This book has so much going for it and leaves you with all the feel goods. I will
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Johanna Helen Howard was born on March 10, 1952 in Germany, where her father, Edwin Dennis Howard, a soldier in the U.S. Army was stationed. The family moved about a great deal when she was young. Her father always dreamed of retiring to Hawaii, and after he passed away in 1964 Johanna and her mother settled there to honor him.

In 1970, when she was still in school, she married Ralph Lindsey, becom

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“You aren't even angry with me anymore, Stefan, so let me up."
He didn't budge. "It would be a misconception on your part, little Tanya, if you are thinking I have to be angry to make love to you." His head bent, his lips grazing her cheek all the way to her ear. With his warm breath sending tingles all over her, he continued in a whisper, "I wanted you last night, today a dozen times, right now more than ever. Tell me to love you, Tanya. Demand it of me!”
“Id you're finished picking out my flaws,maybe you'd like to tell me what you want now.I have other customers--"
"What was that?"
"I Want You.”
More quotes…