Tag Archive | Highland

Some Like it Scot (Scandalous Highlanders #4) by Suzanne Enoch

some like it scot

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CAN A CLASH OF WILLS…

When a mad lass in trousers shoots at him, Munro “Bear” MacLawry isn’t sure what impresses him more-the girl’s sure aim or her irresistibly tempting curves. Catriona MacColl has fled to the Highlands with her half-sister to escape an unwanted wedding, and wants no part of him, nor any man. But he can’t abandon the flame-haired, sharp-tongued wildcat now that he’s discovered her-not when she fits so perfectly in his arms…

LEAD TO A LOVE FOR ALL TIME?

Munro has more than earned his nickname-he’s a well-muscled, well-favored mountain of a man with an engaging bad-boy grin and a string of well-satisfied lasses behind him. Bringing Catriona food, blankets, candles, everything she needs to survive a winter in an abandoned abbey, Munro is an unexpected gift in her reckless bid for freedom-and an unexpected complication. Clan MacDonald has plans for her, and they don’t include her falling for a MacLawry. But this man makes her feel like a woman-and he may be her one chance to live a life about which she’s only dared dream…

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Publisher and Release Date: St. Martin’s Paperbacks, October 2015

RHR Classifications:
Time and Setting: Regency era, Scottish Highlands
Genre: Historical Romance
Heat Level: 2
Reviewer Rating: 4 stars

Review by Sara

Clan MacLawry is known in both Scotland and England as a clan who has fiercely protected the Highlander way of life against even their own countrymen. This desire to remain loyal to the ways of true Scotsmen is a point of pride for the youngest MacLawry sibling Lord Munro. Known as Bear to his family and friends, Munro eschews the English way of dress and manners to live his life embracing the bawdier and more unrefined sides of his culture.

Never going long without a willing woman in his bed, Munro bristles against the domesticated lives his family has found through marriage and children. This sense of watching his brothers and sister fall more in line with the Sassannach ways pushes Bear to venture away from his brother’s home to escape the inevitable pressure from his laird to marry and settle down. Following a stag into the backwoods of MacLawry lands, Munro is surprised to be outmaneuvered in his hunt by a petite woman wearing trousers with a surer aim than he has. Intrigued, he watches her backtrack through the woods to an abandoned ruin where she again outflanks him. To Munro, a mystery woman of this caliber is a puzzle that must be solved.

Catriona MacDonald doesn’t take the presence of a braw highland man skulking around her shelter very kindly, especially as she is trying to keep herself and her younger sister out of sight of anyone possibly connected to the MacLawry. Having left her home on the Isle of Islay, Cat is risking much to keep her independence and an intruder will only lead to complications Cat would much rather leave in the hands of her kinsmen. When her cold demeanor does nothing to discourage her visitor from returning the next day, Cat and her sister Elizabeth reluctantly accept Bear into their circle. Catriona herself is a Highlander through and through, with little appreciation for all the frippery her sister has been raised with in England. Finding a man who doesn’t ridicule her immediately for her appearance and idiosyncrasies surprises her to the point she slowly begins to trust this stranger. As his actions towards her move past just a general concern and into realms of physical pleasure, Cat begins her own awakening to desires and needs she has never had the freedom to pursue.

From almost the moment of their unconventional introduction, Catriona and Munro jumped off the page to me as a great couple. I loved so much of their courtship, from Munro calmly handling her skittishness to Catriona appreciating his forcefulness. They are perfectly matched and neither one tries to hide their burgeoning attraction and feelings. Once Catriona learns that her visitor is one of the MacLawrys it may have complicated their relationship but it couldn’t completely extinguish it. They arechallenged to find ways to be together, even if it’s behind the backs of their clansmen and against the wishes of their families.

I enjoyed Catriona’s being different to the classic romance heroine, which is a major component of her character. Cat was raised by a father who expected sons from his wives rather than the daughters he got. Thus Cat was never allowed to be a girl in the sense of wearing dresses or learning the behaviors found useful by the men of her clan in a potential wife. She was raised to excel at hunting, academic and more masculine pursuits. As she got older and understood just how differently she was perceived by her kinsmen, Cat’s self-image was hurt further when she couldn’t break from that mould. The story is easily at its best in those moments when Munro sees through to the real Catriona. He doesn’t care much that she wears trousers or can out shoot him, being more attracted to the woman who is strong enough in spirit to stand toe-to-toe against him even at his most blustering and still win. I love a romance where I feel both characters really know and appreciate all aspects of their partner, not just the physical side of a relationship. Munro and Catriona can be themselves unapologetically with one another and they are still loved.

While I adored every moment that involved Munro and Cat’s relationship, there are a few things that kept me from rating the Some Like it Scot higher than 4-stars. I don’t read many Scottish Highlander stories, so for me the main conflict of an inter-clan feud and Highland politics came across as frustrating rather than a true impediment to romance. This frustration only grew as Munro’s brother Ranulf was used as the “villain” of the story. Having read book one of this series and met Ranulf as a previous hero (who managed to put aside clan politics for his own happy ever after), his perceived personality shift and hypocrisy just put a damper on the joy I normally have when a story revisits previous couples. The MacLawry family, with one exception, came across as very selfish in the end, and not very supportive of their younger brother.

Those new to the series may have to take a moment to get used to the Scottish dialogue being written with a heavy burr or brogue to everything. Dinna fash yerself! I enjoyed “hearing” the characters with a rich accent, especially when talking to those who had been raised outside of the Highlands. It added just another special touch to an already great story that I would certainly recommend.

Kilts and Daggers (Highland Spies #2) by Victoria Roberts

kilts and daggers

Ever since Lady Grace Walsingham discovered her uncle and sister are spies for the Crown, she has yearned for adventure. She’s counting the days until she can leave barbaric Scotland behind, even if she must endure Highland captain Fagan Murray’s company for weeks.

Fagan has a simple mission: escort the haughty Lady Grace back to England. But nothing is ever easy. The sharp-tongued woman needles him at every turn. But when a menacing threat follows them on their journey, Fagan’s grudging tolerance for Grace turns to respect…and into a perilous attraction that could seal their fate.

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Publisher and Release Date: Sourcebooks Casablanca, May 2015

Time and Setting: Scotland, 1610
Genre: Historical Romance
Heat Level: 2
Reviewer rating: 3.5 stars

Review by Caz

Kilts and Daggers is the second book in the author’s Highland Spies series. I haven’t read the previous book, and although this one works for the most part as a standalone, there are some references to earlier events which left me feeling a little in the dark. It’s a straightforward and – unfortunately – not especially original read, telling the story of the adamantly English Lady Grace Walsingham and her love-hate relationship with Fagan Murray, the ruggedly handsome Highlander and captain of the guard for Ruairi, Laird Sutherland, who has recently married Grace’s elder sister, Ravenna.

Grace loves her sister dearly, but really doesn’t understand her decision to leave the civilisation of England for the wild, untamed highlands of Scotland. The weather is dreadful, the food is horrible, the language is impenetrable and the men are too large and unsophisticated. In short, she hates the place, but she’s agreed to remain there for a month after her sister’s wedding in order to get her two younger sisters settled as they are now to reside with Ravenna and her husband. Grace is betrothed to a handsome young Englishman, Lord Daniel Casterbrook, and the wedding is set to take place as soon as she returns home.

Grace and Fagan strike sparks off each other at every encounter, desperately trying to fight the strength of the attraction building between them. When the time comes for her return to England, Grace is torn, but can’t admit it. The thought of marriage to the handsome, refined Daniel is no longer quite the attractive prospect it once was – but given Rhianna’s choice to marry a highlander, it’s down to Grace to make the brilliant match that will enable her to ensure that her younger sisters are also able to marry well when the time comes. At the appointed time, she sets out with the armed escort provided by her new brother-in-law which is headed, of course, by his trusted captain of the guard. Ruairi and Rhianna see them off, wondering how on earth the pair will survive the journey to England without killing each other!

I generally like romances in which the protagonists start out disliking each other, so the continual back-and-forth indulged in by Grace and Fagan – which is well written and often funny – is the most enjoyable part of the book. But I had a hard time warming to Grace and at times, found her continual denigration of everything about her host’s nation to be rather uncomfortable. Not that the Scots don’t put down the English as well; the book is set in 1610, just a few years after the countries were united under King James I, and relations are clearly difficult, to say the least. But Grace comes off as snobbish and self-important, and I lost patience with her on more than one occasion. One of those was when she refused Fagan’s proposal of marriage after they’d slept together. It’s such an anachronistic attitude and always annoys me when I come across it in historical romances, because women were almost exclusively judged according to their “purity” (and often still are). Her preoccupation with following in Ravenna’s footsteps and becoming a spy for the crown (which is such a hackneyed phrase, no matter the era in which the book is set) is also incredibly naïve, when it’s clear as day that she’s completely unsuited to such an occupation. But it’s definitely a point in Grace’s favour when she eventually concedes this and comes to see what a stupid idea it is. She also grows up considerably during the latter part of the book, which meant that I was fonder of her when I’d finished than I had been at the outset.

Fagan is your archetypal rugged highlander, brave, honourable and gorgeous (if a little rough around the edges), but although he’s an attractive character, he doesn’t really rise above the two-dimensional. The secondary storyline is well-integrated into the romance and lends some excitement to the journey, but the villain of the piece is rather a one-note character and the reasons behind his actions are somewhat simplistic.

In spite of my reservations about the characterisation and actions of the heroine, Kilts and Daggers is an enjoyable, well-written story, and if you can get past Grace’s faults, you may enjoy it more than I did. Ultimately, however, the book lacks substance and that certain something that makes for a truly memorable read.

Celtic Fury by Ria Cantrell

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Blurb:

In 14th Century Scotland amid Highland Feuds and Clan division, rugged men fight for their birthrights and their place in history. The MacCollum and Campbell Clans are bitter enemies, especially for the son of the Laird MacCollum, Rory, the fabled and lethal Wolf of the Highlands. When his betrothed is killed at the hands of his enemies, Rory has sworn vengeance on all named Campbell. Darkness pervades this warrior to the point of poisonous destruction. Each day the darkness creeps forth, changing him and embattling his psyche. Each day, the blackness is becoming harder and harder to quell. Only Love can save him from the impending darkness, but his heart is walled.

After years of self enforced exile in England, Rory returns to Scotland to seek his own destiny. On his journey, Rory aids and rescues a young woman who is broken and battered from a terrible accident. Rory knows he has to save her. In saving her, is it possible to save himself? His heart gradually opens, only to find this woman is his most sworn and hated enemy. Amid lies and betrayal, can Brielle’s love save Rory from the Darkness that seeps through his veins? Can her love prevent him from the self destructive course he has been destined to run?

Publisher and Release Date: Amazon Digital Services 9 January 2013

RHL Classifications:
Time and Setting: 14th century Scotland
Genre: Historical Romance with paranormal elements
Heat Level: 2
Reviewer Rating: 4 stars

Review by: Susan

Dream sequences, Highland-style feuds, heart wrenching tragedies, scores settled between families, a love lost and a new one found are some of the elements which Ria Cantrell incorporates into her love story, Celtic Fury.   The first book in Cantrell’s Celtic Storm series has shards of paranormal activity as visions of Caitlyn McLeod’s spirit appear in the dreams of her husband Ruiri “Rory” MacCollum and in the mind of Gabrielle Val ‘Cour’, the woman who is destined to help Rory live again and the sister of his sworn enemy, the Campbell clan.

Many aspects of the tale are predictable, such as Rory’s finding the distraught Gabrielle lying on the side of the road after her carriage topples over and subsequently falling in love with her before he discovers she is a Campbell.  Their love story is at the center of the tale as Rory MacCollum, nicknamed the Wolf of the Highlands, must find a way to overcome his hatred of the Campbells so that he can allow himself to love Brielle, free from the shadow of her family’s wrongdoings.  His internal struggle resonates with the reader and evokes sympathy for him.  A large part of the tale is expressed through narration so many scenes are told to the reader rather than shown through the characters actions.

It’s an easy read, reminiscent of the storytelling of Sheryl Woods, Linda Lael Miller, and Maggie Anderson.  Similarly to these authors, Cantrell concentrates on family bonds such as Rory’s relationship with his father Caleb and his sister Bronwyn.  Other families are also important to the tale such as the MacDougals, who form an alliance with the MacCollums; and the Brandhams whose son Andrew is married to Rory’s sister Bronwyn.  Cantrell’s story has endearing characters that show the importance of family ties and how these relationships, when healthy and nurturing, can produce a crop of well-adjusted men and women.

In Celtic Fury, the reader watches these characters and their families grow, overcoming misguided perceptions and forgiving small slights made against them.  It’s a phenomenon that many readers experience in their own lives which will enable them to connect with Cantrell‘s characters.  The author ties everyone together at the conclusion leaving no cliffhangers but rather a satisfying smile on the reader’s face.

Virtual Tour and Review: Highlander’s Hope by Collette Cameron

NBtM Highlanders Hope Banner copy

To those who comment, Collette will be awarding a gift basket that include a gift card, blue rose tea cup, blue rose soap, vintage looking cameo pendant, shortbread, tea, and other goodies to a randomly drawn commenter during the Virtual tours.

HIGHLANDER’S HOPE by Collette Cameron

Not a day has gone by that Ewan McTavish, the Viscount Sethwick, hasn’t dreamed of the beauty he danced with two years ago. He’s determined to win her heart and make her his own. Heiress, Yvette Stapleton, is certain of one thing; marriage is risky and, therefore, to be avoided. At first, she doesn’t recognize the dangerously handsome man who rescues her from assailants on London’s docks, but Lord Sethwick’s passionate kisses soon have her reconsidering her cynical views on matrimony. On a mission to stop a War Office traitor, Ewan draws Yvette into deadly international intrigue. To protect her, he exploits Scottish law, declaring her his lawful wife—without benefit of a ceremony. Yvette is furious upon discovering the irregular marriage is legally binding, though she never said, “I do.” Will Ewan’s manipulation cost him her newfound love?

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EXCERPT:Highlander’s Hope Excerpt – Carriage Scene 

Peeking at him from beneath her lashes, she reached up to straighten her bonnet. It hung askew off the side of her head, like a giant drooping peony. She shoved it back into place but the moment she removed her hand, it flopped over once more.

The stranger’s unrestrained laughter filled the carriage.

“Oh, bother it all.” Yvette’s patience with both her rescuer and the silly bonnet were at an end. She had no choice but to remove the dratted thing to reaffix it. Several strands of hair tumbled to her shoulders when she removed the cap from her head. Suppressing a shriek of annoyance, she placed the hat beside her. She then set about securing the wayward curls. Pinning the last strand in place, her eyes met those of her companion.

Momentarily forgetting her unanswered questions, she stilled, as did the world around her. The air hung suspended in her lungs. Her eyes widened in disbelief, her stunned gaze riveted on his face. “You exist?” Her voice was husky with awe.

Raising an ebony eyebrow, a flicker of humor softened the nobleman’s features. “So it would appear.”

A voice, deep and dark, caressed Yvette’s heightened senses. She stared. Her gaze roved across his handsome features returning, as if compelled by some unseen force, to his eyes.

Those eyesFringed by thick lashes, the mesmerizing turquoise pools gazing back at her sent her senses reeling in recognition. Her mouth dropped open. No, it couldn’t be. “Am I dreaming?” Giving a quick shake of her head, she lowered her eyelids for a moment. Lud, but she was befuddled. “Who are you?  

Review by: Lee Anne

RHL Classifications:
Time and Setting: England and Scotland, 1815
Genre: Historical Romance
Heat Level: 2
Reviewer Rating: 5 Stars

Fleeing for her life in the middle of the night, Yvette Stapleton left Massachusetts for England. Once she arrived, she felt her life was endangered yet again so she took off, running through the streets of London. As her pursuers gained on her, a handsome stranger in a beautiful carriage saved her.

Due entirely to events out of her control, she ends up sharing a room with the noisy, bossy, Mrs. Pettigrove. Yvette breaks into the room next to hers in order to find a little peace and quiet. Only when she wakes the next morning, she finds herself in bed with a naked, handsome stranger. From there, things only go downhill.

She’s running for her life and she keeps getting caught in a calamity of errors. Errors that will ruin her reputation. Her handsome stranger, Ewan McTavish comes to her rescue again, claiming they are betrothed. In time, Yvette learns they met at her cousin Vangie’s wedding two years ago. He’s the man of her dreams. Literally. She’s been dreaming of him ever since their one dance at the wedding.

As time goes on, things only gets worse as the lies get deeper. As they flee England for McTavish’s land in Scotland, they find themselves truly married, only Yvette doesn’t know it! Ewan has to keep her safe, tell her they’re married, solve the mystery of why Yvette’s being pursued, AND find the traitor in England’s war office. A walk in the park, right?

Collette Cameron’s writing weaved a fantastic story set in post Napoleonic England. Spies, traitors and espionage were the order of the day. The story of Yvette and Ewan is steeped in deception, espionage, and treason. Through it all Ewan has vowed to keep Yvette safe, while wooing his way into her heart. The passion between flares white hot, but they must resist. It’s difficult for them both, but Yvette’s reputation demands it.

Yvette was an interesting character to me. She was extremely knowledgeable, well educated, feisty and yet still a lady through it all. She was a delightful mixture of being fiercely independent without being a harridan. She knew when she needed help and wasn’t afraid to take it.

Ewan was almost perfect. He’s a typical alpha male in that he gave orders to Yvette when he felt she was in danger. He did it out of love, a need to protect her. He was also man enough to realize that Yvette needed more from him and he was willing to give it to her.

I’m so excited about this new to me author. Her writing is superb and I can’t wait to read more. We had a very nice set up to another story from this family and I’m hoping that Ms. Cameron is busy writing it, I’ll definitely be reading it!

**At the time of the review, this book was available from Amazon for $2.99**

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

MEDIA KIT Author Photo

A life-long Oregonian, Collette Cameron was born and raised in a small town along the northern Oregon coast. Today she makes her home in a rural community, 30 minutes west of Portland. Her Victorian farmhouse sits on a one-acre certified wildlife habit, interspersed with a plethora of gardens: English, rose, butterfly, rock, water, and of course, vegetable.

A voracious reader of romance since her teens, she even named her daughter after a heroine in her favorite romance novel. An enthusiast of times gone by, and anything related to romance, she writes Historical Romance, with a dash of inspiration, a pinch of humor, and a liberal portion of suspense.

Having dabbled in interior decorating in her youth, Collette returned to school, graduating summa cum laude from Oregon State University, and going on to obtain her Master’s Degree in Teaching. She is member of Romance Writers of America, Rose City Romance Writers, The Beau Monde, and Love Faith and Hope, Inc.

Some of Collette’s favorite things include unique blends of coffees and teas, trivia, Cadbury Milk Chocolate, inspirational quotes, and scented candles. Her Christian faith, husband, three adult children, and five miniature dachshunds round out her life quite nicely! When she’s not teaching or writing, she enjoys amateur photography, bird watching, gardening, interior decorating, rock-hunting, boating or fishing on the Columbia River, and reading.

Author Links:

Website: http://collettecameron.com/

Blog: http://blueroseromance.com/

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Soul Mate Publishing Author’s Blog: http://smpauthors.wordpress.com/

Wee William’s Woman by Suzan Tisdale

 Wee William's Woman

Published: March 8, 2013

Publisher’s Blurb:

Scotland, 1345

They call him Wee William. Though he stands nearly seven feet tall, with arms and legs the size of tree trunks and hands as big as buckets, there is nothing wee about him. His scowl alone is enough to make most men’s bones rattle with fear. And women, rather than swooning, tend to run in the opposite direction.

The giant Highlander is a self-proclaimed bachelor who has sworn for years that there isn’t a woman in all of Scotland worth shaving his beard for, and for good reason. Years ago, after a bonny young lass broke his heart and left his dignity in shreds, he swore never again to put it in such peril. As a testament to his sincerity, he vowed never again to shave his beard.

Then he met her. In a single heartbeat, Wee William was lost. Forever lost to a brown-haired beauty with gray-blue eyes brimming with tears — a woman in need.

On her wedding night, Nora realized she made a terrible mistake. She had agreed to wed Horace Crawford when he promised her younger siblings would live with them. He soon broke his word and sent them away. Horace soon proved a harsh, cruel husband who owned no heart, nor a shred of decency.

On a dark, cold winter’s night, when Nora had almost given up hope of ever saving her siblings and herself, God answered her prayers in a most peculiar way. Through a band of fierce Highlanders on a mission to retrieve small but priceless treasures. Treasures she had unwittingly harbored.

Little did the Highlanders know they would return with more than those treasures… They would return with Wee William’s Woman.

Tags: Romance, Historical, Scotland, Highlander

Time Frame: Scotland 1345

Heat Level: 1

REVIEW RATING : 5 stars

REVIEW BY LEE ANNE:

There’s something about a man in a kilt that will make me swoon. Kilts are sexy any way you cut it! Add in a Scottish brogue and I’m a goner! But the icing on the cake? A Scottish Highlander who’s fierce in battle, gentle with the ladies and playful with the kids. How could I ever resist?

Wee William is such a man. He’s dreamy, he’s sexy, he’s fierce and he’s a dreamboat with a wall around his heart.  Wee William has his heart broken as a young man and as a result, he’s refused to shave his beard until he finds a woman worthy of his heart.

Nora married out of necessity. The man she ended up marrying is the worst sort of man. He’s cruel, he’s harsh, and he cares only for himself.

Wee William storms into Nora’s life one night. With these words “Would ye like to become a widow this night?” he alters her life forever. She becomes a free woman. She resolves to get her brother and sister from Firth and start a new life with them.

Wee William, being the honorable man he is, goes with her to Firth. And so it begins. Wee William doesn’t stand a chance.

This was awesome. I love how it ties back to the first story in the series, Laiden’s Daughter. It feels like coming home to revisit that story. It’s fitting. It’s perfect.

Suzan Tisdale does an amazing job of drawing you into the story. You feel like you’re there with the characters and can feel every heartbeat, every breath they have. I love the way she carries the Scottish Brogue through the entire story without missing a beat. It adds to the experience.

I get sucked in so much that when my DH asked me a question, I answered him with “Aye”. He looked at me, blinked, shook his head and muttered, “reading about men in skirts again.” “They’re kilts honey, and it’s sexy.”

I’m really looking forward to the next one in this series, Rowan’s Lady. I’m excited about each of them getting their happily ever after. They’re warriors, they’re fierce and they deserve some lovin’.

**At the time of the review, this book was available from Amazon for $2.99**

ABOUT LEE ANNE:

I am a happily married mother of three very busy children.  Most of my time is spent chauffeuring my kids to their various activities. I cram reading into any spare moment I have. Some days I can have an hour or two and others I’m sneaking in quick reads while waiting on the kids to finish their soccer or gymnastics practice. I like to read a wide variety of genres but I definitely prefer romance. I can’t really pinpoint a favorite author as it changes on a regular basis. I absolutely love finding new authors and giving their stories a chance to be heard. We all have a voice in our heads writing stories and those voices should be given a chance to be heard.

Highland Quest (Highlander Series, #2) by B.J. Scott

 Highland Quest

Published: December 19, 2012

Publisher’s Blurb:

No longer content in the shadows of his older brothers, and on a quest to find his destiny, Bryce Fraser’s chosen path is fraught with danger, passion, and decisions. Can his unspoken love for spirited, beguiling Fallon be triumphant in a time of war and uncertainty, or will they both fall prey to the devious plans of a traitorous laird from a rival clan?

Be sure to also check out the first book in the Fraser brother’s saga, HIGHLAND LEGACY.

Tags: Romance, Historical, Scotland

Time Frame: Scotland 1307

Heat Level: 3

REVIEW RATING : 3.5 stars

REVIEW BY LEE ANNE:

Bryce Fraser is a Scottish Warrior that is fighting to help put Robert the Bruce in the Scottish throne. They’ve been fighting Edward the Longshanks for years and both have paid the price with blood. Bryce has scars that are both physical and emotional. The emotional scars have left him with a wall of stone around his heart. He refuses to fall in love and has no need for a woman.

Fallon is a bonny lass. She doesn’t think she’ll ever find love or get married. She’s been blessed with the gift of second sight. Although Fallon feels the gift is a curse. Everyone she gets close to fears her gift and treats her as freak. Those that she does get close to, die. The worst part is she sees it happen in a vision and can do nothing to stop it.

When Fallon and Bryce meet, they feel an instant connection. But they’re both so stubborn; they refuse to give in to it. A series of events, outside of their control continue to put them in each other’s path. Before long, love has bloomed. But being the stubborn fools they are, they deny it.

When Fallon’s life is endangered, Bryce does everything he can to rescue her. He’s afraid he won’t make it in time. Will he save her? Will he finally admit his love?

I really enjoyed this story. It’s steeped in the battles for Scottish Independence the characters are familiar to us all. Some are loved and others are detested. The battles are fierce, the passion is high and romance is dreamy.

My only real problem was the dialogue. These are Scottish warriors and I really wanted the Scottish brogue that is so sexy. There was some Gaelic thrown in and a couple of words with the brogue, but otherwise it was all proper English. Having the dialogue written in the Scottish Brogue would have added so much to the story and helped immerse me in the backdrop.

This is the second in the series. I have not read the first but did not feel I was missing anything. This story was complete in itself.

**At the time of the review, this book was available from Amazon for $4.99**

ABOUT LEE ANNE:

I am a happily married mother of three very busy children.  Most of my time is spent chauffeuring my kids to their various activities. I cram reading into any spare moment I have. Some days I can have an hour or two and others I’m sneaking in quick reads while waiting on the kids to finish their soccer or gymnastics practice. I like to read a wide variety of genres but I definitely prefer romance. I can’t really pinpoint a favorite author as it changes on a regular basis. I absolutely love finding new authors and giving their stories a chance to be heard. We all have a voice in our heads writing stories and those voices should be given a chance to be heard.

The Thorn and the Thistle by Julie Moffett

 The Thorn and the Thistle

Published: January 28, 2013

Publisher’s Blurb:

Scotland, 1751

The MacLeods are a strong clan, united with their fellow Scots to resist English rule. But when their leader, the Black Wolf, is struck down in battle, it is up to his daughter to keep the rebellion alive. Megan knows she must act quickly or risk losing the fight for their ancestral lands. Desperate, she secretly assumes the Black Wolf’s mantle, fooling their enemies into thinking he’s still alive. If she can keep going for a bit longer, the clan’s future will be secure…

Rolf St. James has been sent by the king to settle the Scottish lands once and for all. He’s not about to let a woman get in his way, no matter how desirable he finds her. He must put aside his attraction and fulfill his duty to permanently quell the rebellion, regardless of the cost.

Rolf represents everything her father hated, everything she’s been fighting against. But as the days pass and Rolf’s code of honor reveals itself, Megan finds it’s not so easy to hate him anymore. Can she risk her people’s future for a chance at personal happiness?

Tags: Romance, Historical, Scotland

Time Frame: Scotland 1751

Heat Level: 1

REVIEW RATING : 4 stars

REVIEW BY LEE ANNE:

4 years after the British have defeated the Scottish at Culloden Megan MacLeod finds herself the laird of her clan. Her father is dead, her brother is dead, and she’s in charge. She’s taken on the identity of her father as the Black Wolf and is raiding the English who have set up homes in her land.

Rolf St. James is friend to King George. He’s been sent to Scotland to find the Black Wolf and bring peace to the land. He’s determined to do the right thing and end the conflict. He finds the Scottish distrustful on the English and has an uphill battle.

This was a wonderful story filled with deceit, loyalty, battles, peace, romance, and distrust. Yes, I know that sounds contradictory but it was all in there! Megan distrusts Rolf and deceives him at every turn. She does it all in order to protect her clan. As she gets to know Rolf, she sees that he is an honorable man and stands by his promises. She’s spent so many years not trusting the English, that she can’t wrap her mind around it. She continues to not trust him and deceive him. Rolf only wants to bring the Black Wolf to justice and it kills him to that knowing it’s Megan’s dad he’s searching for. He knows it will kill her when he send her dad off to be executed for treason. Megan has accepted her fate and knows when Rolf finds out she’s the Black Wolf, she’ll be executed. She hopes to negotiate peace for her people before that happens.

Along the way, they fall in love. Megan knows it will destroy Rolf to send her to her execution. But he’s a loyal Englishman, so she knows he’ll do what he must. Just as she will.

I loved this book. I could not figure out how we were going to get an HEA out of it. Julie Moffett did a fantastic job of weaving a tale of deceit, loyalty and love. I also found the ending to be both heartbreaking and wonderful. It was endearing to have the Scottish clan rally around Megan and give her what she needed. Rolf was wonderful as well. He did his duty while protecting the Scottish people. This story is steeped in Scottish history and it provides a wonderful backdrop.

**At the time of the review, this book was available from Amazon for $4.99**

ABOUT LEE ANNE:

I am a happily married mother of three very busy children.  Most of my time is spent chauffeuring my kids to their various activities. I cram reading into any spare moment I have. Some days I can have an hour or two and others I’m sneaking in quick reads while waiting on the kids to finish their soccer or gymnastics practice. I like to read a wide variety of genres but I definitely prefer romance. I can’t really pinpoint a favorite author as it changes on a regular basis. I absolutely love finding new authors and giving their stories a chance to be heard. We all have a voice in our heads writing stories and those voices should be given a chance to be heard.