Thursday, June 1, 2017

#BookReview - The Reluctant Highlander by Amanda Scot

Title:  The Reluctant Highlander
Author:  Amanda Scott
Genre:  Historic Romance
Release Date:  June 13, 2017

About the Book:

An uncertain bride looks for love with a man as wild and mysterious as his Highland home in this new Scottish romance from a USA Today–bestselling author.

Ordinarily, Lady Fiona Ormiston wouldn’t think of forming an alliance with an ungroomed, barbaric Highlander, despite the protection he offers. But now, by request of the king, Sir Adham MacFinlagh, a brazen stranger and outsider unlike anyone she has met before, is to be her husband. Torn from solitude and the comfort of her family to make a home with the rugged knight, Fiona surrenders to Adham’s powerfully passionate—and shockingly tender—touch, only to discover her new husband’s family ties may lie with an enemy of the king.
A sense of duty may have brought Adham to the marriage bed, but it’s his powerful feelings for his beautiful, willful wife that will be his undoing. Ultimately, the bold knight will have to decide: Does his allegiance lie with his blood ties to the man who hopes to bring down the king or with the bride who has stolen his heart?
From the author “frequently credited with creating the subgenre” of Scottish romance with her Lairds of the Loch and Secret Clan series, The Reluctant Highlander is a rich historical tale of intrigue and desire (Library Journal).

Available for Pre-order
Buy Links: Amazon 

My Review:

It is easy to see why Amanda Scott is a bestselling author.  Her research, character development and vivid imagery of Scotland in the 1400's was beyond my expectations.

From the very beginning, I adored Lady Fiona Ormiston.  She was adventurous and bold, yet remained dignified and lady-like  While stealing away late one night to enjoy a swim in the moonlight, Sir Adham arrives to see her in the water.  Thinking she was drowning, he jumps in to save her.  Although Fiona sees him as a ruthless barbarian, she soon warms to him and the chemistry between them comes close to igniting.  When King James and Fiona's father suggest that Sir Adham should take Lady Fiona's hand in marriage, the two somewhat reluctantly, agree.  But then the passion begins and the love flourishes.

I would have given this 5 wine glasses, but there was a great deal of talking politics.  I know it was important to the story to understand the history of Scotland, but it made parts of the story drag on a bit and there were a few times I had to put the book down.  Once we got beyond the history of all the battles, it got really good again and I absolutely loved the ending.  No spoilers.  You need to read this for yourself to see what happens.

Disclosure:  A complimentary ARC of this novel was provided by the publishing company, Open Road Media Romance, in exchange for an honest review.  All thoughts, opinions and ratings are my own.
My Rating:

About the Author:

Amanda Scott, USA Today Bestselling Author and winner of Romance Writers of America’s RITA/Golden Medallion (LORD ABBERLEY'S NEMESIS) and Romantic Times’ Awards for Best Regency Author and Best Sensual Regency (RAVENWOOD'S LADY), Lifetime Achievement (2007) and Best Scottish Historical (BORDER MOONLIGHT, 2008), began writing on a dare from her husband. She has sold every manuscript she has written.

Amanda is a fourth-generation Californian, who was born and raised in Salinas and graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in history from Mills College in Oakland. She did graduate work at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, specializing in British History, before obtaining her Master’s in History from California State University at San Jose. She now lives with her husband and son in northern California.

As a child, Amanda Scott was a model for O’Connor Moffatt in San Francisco (now Macy’s). She was also a Sputnik child, one of those selected after the satellite went up for one of California’s first programs for gifted children. She remained in that program through high school. After graduate school, she taught for the Salinas City School District for three years before marrying her husband, who was then a captain in the Air Force. They lived in Honolulu for a year, then in Papillion, Nebraska, for seven. Their son was born in Nebraska. They have lived in northern California since 1980.

Scott grew up in a family of lawyers, and is descended from a long line of them. Her father was a three-term District Attorney of Monterey County before his death in 1955 at age 36. Her grandfather was City Attorney of Salinas for 36 years after serving two terms as District Attorney, and two of her ancestors were State Supreme Court Justices (one in Missouri, the other the first Supreme Court Justice for the State of Arkansas). One brother, having carried on the Scott tradition in the Monterey County DA’s office, is now a judge. The other is an electrician in Knoxville, TN, and her sister is a teacher in the Sacramento area.

The women of Amanda Scott’s family have been no less successful than the men. Her mother was a child actress known as Baby Lowell, who performed all over the west coast and in Hollywood movies, and then was a dancer with the San Francisco Opera Ballet until her marriage. Her mother’s sister, Loretta Lowell, was also a child actress. She performed in the Our Gang comedies and in several Loretta Young movies before becoming one of the first women in the US Air Force. Scott's paternal grandmother was active in local and State politics and served as president of the California State PTA, and her maternal grandmother was a teacher (and stage mother) before working for Monterey County. The place of women in Scott’s family has always been a strong one. Though they married strong men, the women have, for generations, been well educated and encouraged to succeed at whatever they chose to do.

Amanda Scott’s first book was OMAHA CITY ARCHITECTURE, a coffee-table photo essay on the historical architecture of Omaha, written for Landmarks, Inc. under her married name as a Junior League project. Others took the photos; she did the research and wrote the text on an old Smith-Corona portable electric. She sold her first novel, THE FUGITIVE HEIRESS - likewise written on the battered Smith-Corona in 1980. Since then, she has sold many more books, but since the second one she has used a word processor and computer. Twenty-five of her novels are set in the English Regency period (1810-1820). Others are set in 15th-century England and 14th- through 18th-century Scotland, and three are contemporary romances. Many of her titles are currently available at bookstores and online.


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