A Highlander's Christmas Kiss by Paula Quinn
Series: The MacGregors: Highland Heirs #5
Also in this series: The Taming of Malcolm Grant, The Scot's Bride, Laird of the Black Isle (The MacGregors: Highland Heirs #7)
Publication Date: September 27th 2016
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A STRANGER'S SMILE
Christmas may be coming to Linavar, but Temperance Menzie is far from joyful. Grief-stricken over the death of her father at the hands of the Black Riders, she almost didn't see the wounded stranger in the woods. And now she's determined to give this braw, brooding Highlander the help she couldn't give her father. But there's a secret lurking in the depths of his blue-gray eyes. And Temperance won't rest until she uncovers it . . .
A LOVER'S KISS
A killer for hire. It's the last thing Cailean Grant ever thought he'd become, but being part of the Black Riders was his only way to survive. Now, his guilt grows day by day, along with his desire for the beautiful, brave lass nursing him back to health. As Christmas, the season of miracles, draws near and the truth of his identity threatens to come out, Cailean must risk the only thing he has left to lose-his heart.
Cailean Grant has hardened his heart and has cut himself off from feeling. He has become a Black Rider – a mercenary. His cousin Patrick has traveled with him and has stayed with him constantly trying to talk Cailean into leaving the Black Riders but Cailean refuses. When Cailean and Patrick are on their way back to the castle that houses the Black Riders Patrick is shot with an arrow and Cailean is out for blood. When he gets back to the castle the Lord’s son, Duncan, states that it was the Seth Menzie. When Cailean hears this he believes it as the Grants and Menzies have always been at war. That night Seth Menzie dies.
After Seth Menzie dies, Cailean goes back to Linavar hoping to catch a glimpse of Temperance Menzie, Seth’s daughter. He knows he should get nowhere near her but he can’t help himself. She’s a light in the darkness for him. When he’s stabbed in the back and Temperance finds him she nurses him back to health. Cailean falls in love with Temperance day by day. She makes him see that all is not lost and helps him open his heart to love and life. Unfortunately he has guilt to deal with. When Temperance finds out he’s a Black Rider he knows she’ll never forgive him for the death of her father.
This was a great historical Christmas romance. It was certainly a different kind of romance because of Cailean’s part in the death of Temperance’s father. I can’t say that I would forgive a man that played a part in my father’s death, that’s for sure.
Despite my doubts of Temperance ever forgiving him I really liked the story. It was wonderful to see Cailean brought out of that dark and horrible place he had been living in because of the deaths of those he loved. He found something worth living for and though it happened slowly it was well worth it in the end.
Temperance was an amazingly strong woman. She was just 19 (I think) and yet did much for her home, her father, her grandmother, her village. I really enjoyed reading about her and was happy when she fell for Cailean.
The Black Rider issue was a nasty one and Duncan in particular was a right bastard. I disliked him from the first moment he was on the page and that didn’t change throughout the book. I was quite happy to see that he did not prevail in the end.
Overall this was quite a good love story and one I very much enjoyed reading.
Rating: 4 out of 5