Dina's Reviews > Almost Heaven

Almost Heaven by Judith McNaught
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Feb 03, 2009

it was amazing
bookshelves: historical-romance, dik
Recommended to Dina by: K.
Read in January, 2009

I absolutely LOVE this book! This is what I posted at the RF (Amazon) when I read it for the 1st time, and I'm simply copying my post here on GR because I'm lazy and don't feel like writing a full review...

Well, I've just finished reading Almost Heaven and I'm glad to say that I'm in love with Ian, Elizabeth, and everyone and everything else in the book. :) I especially loved Ian for having no fear admitting to himself he was in love with Elizabeth without knowing if she felt the same, and I adored Elizabeth for standing her ground and not cowering when Ian tried to send her away.

I though the Big Misunderstanding issue would turn me off because I'm not a fan of this kind of plot device - and there were not only one, but two in this book -, but JM made it believable to me. Ian and Elizabeth were so much in love with each other that it rendered them defenseless, insecure and wary. The more you love someone, the more you're open to being hurt by them.

Quoting Elizabeth: "I've hurt you terribly, my love, and I'll hurt you again during the next fifty years. And you are going to hurt me, Ian - never, I hope, as much as you are hurting me now. But if that's the way it has to be, then I'll endure it, because the only alternative is to live without you, and that is no life at all." Oh my!

And I can't resist adding my favorite passage:

"If you would take one step forward, darling, you could cry in my arms. And while you do, I'll tell you how sorry I am for everything I've done -" Unable to wait, Ian caught her, pulling her tightly against him. "And when I'm finished," he whispered hoarsely as she wrapped her arms around him and wept brokenly, "you can help me find a way to forgive myself."

Tortured by her tears, he clasped her tighter and rubbed his jaw against her temple, his voice a ravaged whisper: "I'm sorry," he told her. He cupped her face between his palms, tipping it up and gazing into her eyes, his thumbs moving over her wet cheeks. "I'm sorry." Slowly, he bent his head, covering her mouth with his. "I'm so damned sorry."


OMG, I cried when I read that! And I'm not ashamed to say, my eyes are "suspiciously bright" right now, while I'm typing this...

I'll stop now. Otherwise, I'll just end up posting every single line of dialogue exchanged between Ian and Elizabeth. :)
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Quotes Dina Liked

Judith McNaught
“If you would take one step forward, darling, you could cry in my arms. And while you do, I'll tell you how sorry I am for everything I've done -" Unable to wait, Ian caught her, pulling her tightly against him. "And when I'm finished," he whispered hoarsely as she wrapped her arms around him and wept brokenly, "you can help me find a way to forgive myself."
Tortured by her tears, he clasped her tighter and rubbed his jaw against her temple, his voice a ravaged whisper: "I'm sorry," he told her. He cupped her face between his palms, tipping it up and gazing into her eyes, his thumbs moving over her wet cheeks. "I'm sorry." Slowly, he bent his head, covering her mouth with his. "I'm so damned sorry.”
Judith McNaught, Almost Heaven

Judith McNaught
“Listen carefully to me, darling, because I'm giving you fair warning that I won't let you do this to us. You gave me your love, and I will not let you take it away. The harder you try, the harder I'll fight you. I'll haunt your dreams at night, exactly the way you have haunted mine every night I was away from you. You'll lie awake in bed at night, wanting me, and you'll know I'm lying awake wanting you. And when you can't stand it anymore you'll come back to me and I'll be there waiting for you. I'll cry in your arms, and I'll tell you I'm sorry for everything I have done and you'll help me find a way to forgive myself.”
Judith McNaught, Almost Heaven
tags: love

Judith McNaught
“Feeling a little foolish over her confidences, Elizabeth glanced up at him with an embarrassed smile. “What is the most beautiful place you’ve ever seen?”

Dragging his gaze from the beauty of the gardens, Ian looked down at the beauty beside him. “Any place,” he said huskily, “where you are.”
Judith McNaught, Almost Heaven

Judith McNaught
“Because,” he said quietly as she stood up, “until you walked into it, this was an ordinary garden.”

Puzzled, Elizabeth tipped her head. “What is it now?”

“Heaven.”
Judith McNaught, Almost Heaven


Reading Progress

02/14/2016 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-34 of 34) (34 new)

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 Danielle The Book Huntress (Back to the Books) Awesome review, Dina. I need to reread these McNaughts. I don't remember them too well.


message 2: by Dina (last edited Dec 13, 2009 09:58AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Dina Thanks, Danielle! I was about to start reading Something Wonderful, but decided to reread Almost Heaven just to jog my memory since these books are related. After being swept away (again!) by AH, I had to track down my gushing raving "review" at the RF and post it here. :)


Karen Great review Dina. This is one of the few McNaught books I don't own (yet!)


Dina Thanks, Karen! This is one of the few McNaught books I do own, LOL.


Rane Awesome Review, hm if you say the big misunderstanding can be overlooked I may have to get myself a copy!


Dina Thanks, Rane! I had some problems in the beginning of the story, but then Chapter 6 came, swept me off my feet and I fell in love with Ian and everything else. Big Misunderstandings and all, I just didn't care. I loved this book! :)


message 7: by Tammy (new) - added it

Tammy Awesome review Dina! :)


Dina Thanks, Tammy! :)

So, are you still sober or are you "suffering" from too much partying yet?


message 9: by Angelc (new) - added it

Angelc Great review, Dina!! Sounds like a keeper!!


message 10: by Adrienne (new)

Adrienne Awwww Dina, nearly had me in tears to. I've not read any books by JM but think I may give her a try:)


message 11: by K. (new) - rated it 5 stars

K. D.: *Deep Sigh!* Thanks for this special gift to me this holiday season! LOL! I'll never get enough of the shining example of romance writing that is this story! I've always felt that the reason McNaught is dubbed "The Queen of the Big Mis." is not because this plot device is done over and over poorly, but rather, we readers clamber to get our hands on yet another of her "Big Mis" books. She does a typical "wrong" so "right," in her romances, any other writer better beware before trying to use that plot device. McNaught is clearly not an "average" romance writer, and the "super hero" of an example of the usual bad plot device gone right!

Absolutely wonderful review D., and thanks for letting part of the book "speak for itself" with your carefully selected quotes. Great job! :)
K.



message 12: by Dina (new) - rated it 5 stars

Dina Thanks, ladies! This one is a real keeper. :)


KarenH Thanks for the "re-review" Dina. That is my all-time favorite passage from a romance novel ever! Every time the subject comes up at Amazon, I quote the whole thing (LOL, whether they are asking for the entire quote or not). Do you think it's possible someone might not get teary-eyed when they read it?


message 14: by Dina (new) - rated it 5 stars

Dina Impossible, K2! It is the most romantic passage ever. *sighs*

P.S.: Someone created a new discussion about McNaught on the RF yesterday. Have a look and try to find a way to quote this passage there. I dare you, LOL.


Ally72 Dina...I have now another book I want to read right away. This was such a beautiful review and McNaught is a new author for me so I can't wait. Thank-you!


message 16: by Dina (new) - rated it 5 stars

Dina LOL, you're welcome, Alexis. Even if you like this book only half as much as I did, you'll be in for a treat. :)


message 17: by Theresa (new)

Theresa Great review! I haven't read anything by this author and that passage you quoted brought tears to my eyes anyway. Off to Amazon to order it. :)


message 18: by Dina (new) - rated it 5 stars

Dina Thanks, Theresa! I hope you enjoy it. :)


message 19: by Lady Jayne *~*The Beach Bandida*~* (last edited Apr 28, 2011 06:49PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

 Lady Jayne *~*The Beach Bandida*~* Beautiful review, Dina! Almost Heaven is my absolute fave McNaught book. And I've been in love with Ian since my late teens…so well over a decade now! ^_^ Those passages you quoted really got to me too. You're really making me want to re-read this!


message 20: by Dina (new) - rated it 5 stars

Dina Thanks, LJ. I love when someone "resurrects" this review, because I got to reread my favorite quotes. *sighs*


message 21: by Lady Jayne *~*The Beach Bandida*~* (last edited Apr 28, 2011 06:51PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

 Lady Jayne *~*The Beach Bandida*~* Thank you, Dina, for "resurrecting" this review! *sighs* You're really making me MISS Ian again and tempting me to re-read it - AGAIN! LOL He really was my very first true fictional hero love. I am simply IN LOVE with him STILL. Oh, Ian!! *cluthes heart*


message 22: by Dina (new) - rated it 5 stars

Dina YW, Jayne. This book is sooo gooooood! I still remember entire passages and sigh like a ninny when I think of Ian. :)


 Lady Jayne *~*The Beach Bandida*~* Dina wrote: "YW, Jayne. This book is sooo gooooood! I still remember entire passages and sigh like a ninny when I think of Ian. :)"

*more sighing*

I know! Me, too! Gah! LOL I think I'll have to re-read this, this weekend! Eventhough I have so many other unread books to read. Since it has been a while, and I'm really missing Ian now.

*even more sighing*


message 24: by southpaw285 (new) - added it

southpaw285 Great review, Dina. I'm going to have to pull this and read it. I have it around here somewhere...I just gotta find it.


Jane Lee I love Almost Heaven too, although probably not as much as you did. I loved Ian's character. I think he's awesome ;)


message 26: by Dina (new) - rated it 5 stars

Dina Thanks, southpaw. :) You've got to find it and read it! You won't regret it, I promise.

Jane Lee, this is one of my all-time keepers. It made me cry so goooood!


message 27: by K. (new) - rated it 5 stars

K. Hey D! I saw your comment on FB and it took me to GR (didn't know it did that). I've been so MIA because ...[GASP] I haven't been reading! I know (WT?!) I think I've just been a little burned out on it lately and paying attention to other stuff. However ... "planting" this tempting book (hehe!) Maybe, I'll just thumb through it tonight! ;D
K.

P.S. "Hey" to all my GR buddies! :)


message 28: by AgentScully (new)

AgentScully K we've missed you!!!


message 29: by Dina (new) - rated it 5 stars

Dina K., I haven't been reading as much as I used to do either. I'm not burned out, I just don't have much free time now. :(


Ally72 Hi K.!!! It is good to see you back! Dina...I am in the same boat as you right now and I wish I had more time to read.


Veronica Hualde Thanks Dina for the review and the quotes/ I just love this book because you'll never help yourself to fall in love with the heroine. Despite the problems elizabeth had been facing she still had reasons to take on the world with a happy spirit.


message 32: by Brigid (new)

Brigid I would like to try a Judith McNaught, but I have a problem. I'm not a fan of forced seduction, and I know some of her books have that. Does this particular book have forced seduction?


message 33: by Linda (new)

Linda Gitari This is a great review...reading it makes me want to re-read the book.


Braveheart Great review , I just finished reading this book and felt very much as you did all the way thru , the plot devise robbed it of a 5 rating in my book ...but yes , gratefully all ended well


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