RETRO REVIEW: Sound of the Heart by Genevieve Graham

sound of heart

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Dougal MacDonnell, a fierce warrior from the Highlands of Scotland, is able to hear the thoughts of other men and dream how the future will unfold. Devastated by the loss of his family during the Battle of Culloden in 1746, he fosters a deep hatred for the English. But when Glenna, the love of his life and a Scottish outlaw, is captured and shipped overseas, Dougal is forced to join an English army made of vanquished Scots. Now fighting on the side of his sworn enemies, he embarks on a journey that will take him across the seas to the colonies. There he will risk everything for the chance to find his true love.

Publisher and Release Date: Berkley, May 2012

RHR Classifications:
Time and Setting: Scotland /American colonies, 18th Century
Genre: Romantic Historical Fiction
Heat Rating: 2
Reviewer Rating: 4.5 stars

Review by Jill

Dougal MacDonnell, barely a man, has fought at the Battle of Culloden, losing his father and not knowing the fate of his younger brothers, Andrew and Ciaran. Captured by the victorious British soldiers he, along with other surviving Highlanders, is taken from the moors of Culloden to the prison at Inverness. From there he is moved to the floating prison on the Thane of Fife, to Tilbury Port and the filthy streets of London, and finally to the colonies.

This is not an historical romance, so much as a work of romantic historical fiction. There is a romance and it’s very strong, but the historical parts are numerous and detailed. The dialogue is believable and very well done, with enough Scottish ‘accent’ to feel immersed in the Highlands, without it being overdone.

This is the second book in Ms Graham’s MacDonnells series, but can be read as a standalone. I did enjoy this one a little more than the first book, Under the Same Sky. There is a paranormal element – as in the first book – but it’s not obtrusive. Dougal does possess a gift as does his brother, Andrew. If you read other reviews, be careful. There is a rather delicious twist, and it’s best you find it out for yourself.

If I have any complaints, I feel the ending was rushed, and the step from friends to lovers happened just a bit too quickly. I also had some problems working out the timeline of events, but that could be just me.

With plenty of historical details and descriptions of the era and setting, an action-packed adventure, and a sweet romance, this will suit fans of romantic historical fiction, historical romance, Highlanders, the Battle of Culloden, and the Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon.

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