- Title: A Kingdom of Dreams
- Author: Judith McNaught
- Format: Paperback 464 pages
- Publisher: Pocket Books
- Published: 31 May 1996
- Genre: Historical Romance
- ISBN 13: 9780671737610
- ISBN 10: 0671737619
- Source: Bought it myself
Judith McNaught has written her most tender, most tempestuous romance yet…the story of Jennifer Merrick, a feisty Scottish beauty, and the fierce English warrior she defies – and desires. Abducted from her convent school, headstrong Jennifer does not easily surrender to Royce Westmoreland, Duke of Claymore. Known as “The Wolf, ” his very name strikes terror in the hearts of his enemies. But proud Jennifer will have nothing to do with this man who holds her captive, this handsome rogue who taunts her with his blazing arrogance. Boldly she challenges his will…until the night he takes her in his powerful embrace, awakening in her an irresistible hunger. And suddenly Jennifer finds herself ensnared in bewildering web…a seductive, dangerous trap of pride, passion, loyalty…and overwhelming love.
I have re-read this book I don’t even remember how many times. Yet I never get tired of it. I can wholeheartedly say that even to this day, Judith McNaught remains one of my favourite authors, and for good reason. A Kingdom of Dreams is Book 2 in the Westmoreland series after the smashing Whitney, My Love. This book tells of the first Duke of Claymore, Royce Westmoreland. He is a warrior in every way, fighting for king and country. But how far will you go to appease your king and fulfill his orders. Or will the truth be more wonderful than it seems?
Jennifer is a nun-in-training and so hasn’t pledged her life to God. She is quite the rebel of the abbey in which she lives in. She sleeps during sermons, pretending to be lost in prayer, she daydreams when she should be doing other things, and she is often found wandering the hills ala Maria in The Sound of Music. Actually, if Maria were to don a fiery red wig, and have green eyes, you’d pretty much get the picture. I love reading about how she foolishly believes that she can escape from her destiny. She is as cunning as she is passionate. But of all else, all she has ever wanted is to have a kingdom of her own, a kingdom of dreams.
Royce on the other hand is tactful, intelligent, and scarred beyond belief. He strikes fear in everyone who dares lay their eyes on him. Everyone, but one. He is like the King’s dog, risking his life on a daily basis to win his battles and fatten his King’s coffers. But he has had enough. Royce has accumulated enough wealth and land to retire, right after this one last battle in hopes of claiming Scotland for his King. All he wants is some peace and quiet, never in his imagination did he think his serenity would and could be disrupted by a young maid with hair of liquid coppery sunlight and unyielding defiance.
I love the other supporting characters as well. I like that they are given time to grow and become a real part of the story. The ones to look out for are Jennifer’s Aunt, Stefan, and Arik. Although, the rest of Royce’s personal guards contribute lots of laughs on their own.
This is a tale about one’s undying loyalty to one’s kinmen. And whether or not that loyalty clouds one’s mind to the truth. It is also a question about loyalty vs being true to one’s heart. Whenever I am itching for a historical romance, I always come back to this one time and time again.
Disclosure: I was not compensated for this review financially or otherwise. Everything mentioned are my own thoughts based on my experience.
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