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To Have and To Hold

(Wyckerley Trilogy #2)

3.84  ·  Rating details ·  1,915 ratings  ·  197 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, 355 pages
Published March 4th 2003 by NAL Trade (first published 1995)
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3.84  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,915 ratings  ·  197 reviews

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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 (Back to the Books)
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nov 11, 2009 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 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
Sep 06, 2011 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dec 07, 2011 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
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
Preeti ♥︎ (Romance She Reads)
What a beautiful book, despite all the ugliness in it.
The book has dark undertones but doesn’t completely keel over to the dark zone. (In fact it has its share of sweetness and fluff.) The flawed H’s nastiness in the present contributes more to the angst than all the hardships suffered by the h in the past. His turnaround is slow but he comes through at the right time to save the h and the book.

(view spoiler)
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
Jess the Romanceaholic
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
(view spoiler) ...more
Spoiler Whore-Momoa
4.5 stars

What an ass the H was but I love how he changed his ways for the h.
Elizabeth Tai
Nov 07, 2016 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
Jul 06, 2016 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
Nov 29, 2016 rated it really liked it
Really well written book with great, complex characters and an interesting plot. It's pretty easy to see whodunit from early on, but that doesn't matter in the least, and the plot unfolds very neatly. Some of Sebastian's behaviour is pretty unlikeable, although he does redeem himself later. And when you meet his charming (not!) family, so much about him is explained. But he is the person who can save Rachel, while she at the same time saves him. Very satisfying.

It's not an easy or fluffy book, b
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
Sep 13, 2010 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 spea ...more
Jul 16, 2016 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. R
Mar 18, 2016 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
Jul 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
It was wonderful, wonderful, wonderful! I absolutely LOVED it. It will go on as one of my favorites for life.

Sebastian has become a magistrate and in the course of his duties, happens upon Mrs. Rachel Wade, a woman convicted ten years prior of murdering her husband. One look at her ignites his curiosity and desire. He rescues her from returning to prison and makes her his housekeeper. He does this so that he can take her to bed and she will have no way of denying him. He plays a cat and mouse g
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 24, 2011 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 charact ...more
Dec 21, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: abuse, historical
4.5 Stars
May 26, 2018 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Fans of Historical Romance Who Don't Mind a Rape-y Hero
Reviewed for THC Reviews
The first two books I read by Patrica Gaffney were both keepers for me and earned her a spot on my favorite authors list. One of those books was the first in her Wyckerley Trilogy, so I went into reading To Have and to Hold very much looking forward to it and with high expectations. Unfortunately those expectations were dashed when the hero behaved like a selfish jerk for the first third of the book and then proceeds to rape the heroine (something I’ll address in a moment
 ❀ 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
Cat The Curious
This is my first time reading this author. The hero, Sebastian is a cad anti-hero type. He rescues the heroine for his own selfish perverted lust. The author does a good job of explaining his thought processes. The heroine, Rachel has been through so much pain in her young life that she has separated herself from all emotion. Gaffney really deserves credit for bringing the characters to life and their transition through out the story. I dinged a star for the mystery and suspense part. That was p ...more
Henrietta Higginbottom
Oh, this book. Sebastian was a deliciously complex character, but he went so far into the debauched and horrible treatment of Rachel that I just couldn't accept him as hero material until it was too late. I just could not reconcile his supposed change with the horrible things he'd done. His shower of gifts for Rachel felt more like they were easing his conscience, than spoiling the woman he loved. She deserved better.

The writing was well done and engaging, but difficult to say the least. 2.5 sta
Jul 08, 2016 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Ania by: Melissa
3.5 stars.

" You erased yourself," Sebastian said, and she said, " Yes. That's it, exactly. I killed myself without dying."

Patricia Gaffney's writing is beautiful and I found myself highlighting many parts of this book.

Sebastian, the hero was definitely problematic and I didn't completely warm up to him. I can safely say that his lack of redemption was definitely what made me rate this book so.

Rachel, on the other hand, was a great heroine! She was strong, resilient and sometimes so absolutely c
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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

Other books in the series

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