Book Review-Always and Forever by Beverly Jenkins

Posted May 11, 2016 by Loverofromance in Book Reviews / 14 Comments

Book Review-Always and Forever by Beverly Jenkins

Book Review-Always and Forever by Beverly JenkinsAlways and Forever by Beverly Jenkins
Published by Avon on September 5th 2000
Genres: Historical Romance, Reconstruction Era, Interracial Romance
Narrator: Thomas Penny
Length: 10 Hours and 15 Mins
Pages: 384
Format: Audiobook
Source: Library
ISBN: 0380813742
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A desperate needSassy Grace Atwood never expected to find her proper self accidentally tumbling into a stranger's bed. If she weren't desperate for a man to lead a wagon train of brides to a woman-starved town out West, she never would have gone near Jackson Blake-former lawman or not. She should send the ruggedly charming Texan packing...only he's perfect for the job. Now if her mind would just stop going blank every time she looked at him, they A comsuming passionWhat's a man to do when a beautiful woman leans over his bed in the middle of the night? Come to think of it, that was the only time Blake's ever seen the straitlaced Miss Atwood the least bit ruffled. He's certain that beneath her buttoned-up appearance lies a passionate woman aching to break free. But though Blake longs to take her in his arms, all he can offer Grace is a life on the run. And when the demons from his past catch up with them, Blake is caught between the ties that bind and a love that could last...always and forever.

Reading Challenges:
  • Oldie But A Goodie Reading Challenge
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  • Read It All Reading Challenge-Beverly Jenkins
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  • TBR Reading Challenge

  • My Review Updated

    Summary 

    Grace Atwood, is requested by her cousin who lives in Kansas the need of women in the area. He requests the offer of mail order brides. Grace is a woman never wanting to refuse a challenge, and bringing 30 women to Kansas to marry men that they have never met is a serious undertaking. But Grace is a city woman, having taking over her father’s bank in Chicago. She finds herself desperate to find a leader and guide for the wagon train. She eventually finds herself seeking a particular man, where she accidentally stumbles into his bed  in a brothel. Not Grace’s typical place of excursions. Jackson Blake, is a ladies man and a man of mystery and surprises. When he agrees to be the director of this women’s only wagon train, Jackson and Grace come to an understanding. But as they help train these thirty women, and move out west to Kansas, a love blossoms between Jackson and Grace. But Jackson is a man who can’t afford to tie himself down to Grace no matter how much he cares for her. He is a ex law man when his father was murdered and the man responsible unlawfully had a warrant out for Jackson’s arrest in Texas. Will Jackson be able to find justice for his father and live a full life with the woman he loves?

    Plot and Story Line 

    What was most intriguing about this story was the way it progresses because boy does it leave you with some twists and turns you don’t expect. I had a blast with reading Jackson’s story. Jackson is a character we saw briefly in Something Like Love and I was very intrigued. This story takes place a short while following the Reconstruction. Many things for the blacks have been good changes but in many ways especially the more south you go, the worse it gets for these people. I loved the idea of these women going on a wagon train together to marry men that are strangers to them. Grace Atwood is a wonderful heroine and she really is the center of the story but I liked that about this one. We see how passionate and driven she is, and willing to face any obstacle with courage. I did enjoy the way that she is with Jackson. She respects his expertise and knowledge on certain matters, but when it counts she stands up to him almost like a mama bear protecting her young. I just wanted to shout “bravo” so many times. It was quite interesting to see the formation of the plot in this story and the turn it takes toward the later half of it. The writing is simply spectacular and I love the rich history that is placed in the story. It really balanced it out in ways that benefited the romance. The love story that develops between these two starts with powerful chemistry and grows into something with more depth, Love a couple willing to fight for each other and get their HEA.

    The Narration 

    Now this narrator was a bit of a surprise for me. I haven’t listened to many male narrators, so it always sets me back in some ways. But eventually I grew to like his tones and inflections. I don’t think he necessarily made the book better just by the narration, but he did have a good voice that was easy to become accustomed to.

    The Cover 

    LOVE this cover!!! There is something so passionate about this pose….and boy I have a weakness for these styles of covers! It just sweeps you away.

    Overall View 

    Always and Forever is a fascinating romantic tale of adventure, passion, danger, and defeating a great evil!!! A Jewel Of The Frontier!!

    About The Author Updated

    About Beverly Jenkins

    Beverly Jenkins is an African-American historical romance writer. She and her family live in southeastern Michigan. Born in Detroit, she graduated from Cass Technical High School and attended Michigan State University where she majored in Journalism and English Literature.
    Ms. Jenkins has written sixteen books to date and has received numerous awards for her works, including: the Detroit Free Press Book of the Year, three Waldenbooks Best Sellers Awards; two Career Achievement Awards from Romantic Times Magazine; a Golden Pen Award from the Black Writer’s Guild, and in 1999, Ms. Jenkins was voted one of the Top Fifty Favorite African-American writers of the 20th Century by AABLC, the nation’s largest on-line African-American book club. In May of 2002, Ms. Jenkins published her first historical novel for young adults, titled: Belle and the Beau. Her second YA, Josephine and the Soldier followed in 2003.
    Ms. Jenkins has been featured in many national publications, including the Wall Street Journal, People Magazine, Dallas Morning News and Vibe Magazine. She has lectured at such prestigious universities as Oberlin University; the University of Illinois; and the University of Michigan. She speaks widely on both romance and 19th century African-American history at libraries, schools and organizations including Romance Writers of America, and the Afro–American Historical and Genalogical Society. She is active in her church and community, and in November 2001 was a recipient of the YWCA Woman of Achievement Award.
    In February of 2004, Ms. Jenkins’ first contemporary novel of romantic suspense, The Edge of Midnight was released. Sexy/Dangerous, her fourth novel of romantic suspense will be in stores in November 2006.

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    • Eva

      I just purchased Through the Storm yesterday after your rec and I’m so excited to start it! This one sounds awesome, too! Great review!

      • WHAT?!!!! THAT is awesome.I want to do a little dance hehe I can’t wait to hear what you think of it because man do I love it. Beverly Jenkins is so great.

    • That must be nerve wracking, travelling and meeting your future husband for the first time. It’s comforting that Grace ended up with someone solid, but if this did happen in real life, I’m sure there’ll be more horror stories than HEA

      • oh I can only imagine right?? I mean I know back then in most cases many women had talked with these men over letters for quite a long while before they traveled west. But in this scenario, many of these women needed a fresh start or didn’t have much option in matters of survival especially for black women. But yeah I am sure it didn’t always end up good but I like to think there were some happy endings happen too. But it does make for a great scenario for a romance though.

    • Accidentally finds herself i a brothel in a bed with a stranger, ok, lol

      • haha yeah in the story given an address to find him and not knowing it was a brothel until she arrived LOL

    • Now this is the mail order bride plotted story I should have read. Love seeing that you are still enjoying a stack of Beverly Jenkins books. I will get to her books. I will. 😉

      • oh yes I am, my library has quite a few of her audio books and I am loving them. This is a great mail order bride theme here. But you should also try Joan Johnston and Lorraine Heath has a good mail order bride theme too in HR!!

        • Oooh, I’ll have to check them out. I’ve been meaning to read Lorraine Heath after you recommended her during the History 101s.

          • Oh you should, the first book Texas Destiny is a mail order bride set up.

    • I like this cover, too. I love her hair!!! And the way she’s tilting her head back and looking up at him. Although it does look like the male cover model is just wearing regular old jeans.

      I really want to read more Beverly Jenkins. I loved Indigo so much. Of course there are sooo many authors I want to read more of.

      • oh yes…her hair is fantastic in this one and I love the way he is holding her!! You definitely should read more of her!! I can’t seem to get enough. haha

    • You and your historicals made me buy two the other day so I can get back into the genre. Just saying 😉

      • haha oh that is just awesome!!! Its a good genre to get back into 🙂