Author: Hannah Howell

Guest Review: Highland Devil by Hannah Howell

Posted July 23, 2018 by Tracy in Reviews | 1 Comment

Guest Review: Highland Devil by Hannah HowellReviewer: Tracy
Highland Devil (Murray Family #22) by Hannah Howell
Series: Murray Family #22
Also in this series: Highland Groom
Publisher: Zebra
Publication Date: July 31, 2018
Format: eARC
Point-of-View: Third
Genres: Historical Romance
Pages: 352
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Goodreads
three-half-stars

When a red-haired woman tries to steal Sir Gybbon Murray's horse on his journey back to the Murray stronghold, he thanks his lucky stars that his horse is a rude lout—and that the pretty thief is not so injured that she can't tell her tale. He's no nursemaid to delicate lasses, but Mora Ogilvy is fleeing her ruthless cousins, fearing for her life. And when she tells him of the home they've taken from her and the man they say she murdered, Gybbon cannot let such injustice stand.

Mora's pride demands she take back her lands, but not by risking the lives of this handsome, wicked knight and his family. Still, she needs to recover from her wounds, and staying close to Gybbon in his brother's keep is a seductive solution. A few weeks at his side will be a sweet memory for her when she returns to fight her own battles. Except the depth of her cousins' treachery—and the fierceness of Gybbon's love—may turn her own heart against her plans.

Mora is on the run from her evil cousin.  He admitted to her that he killed her parents and she just manages to get her seven-year-old brother, Daniel, on the run before he tries to stab her.  She gets away from him and heads off to her mother’s family, the Camerons.  While on the run she comes across a man with a horse and decides to steal the horse.  Unfortunately the horse doesn’t take well to strangers and bucks her off.

The own of the horse is Gybbon Murray.  He takes pity on Mora and offers to take her to Sigimore Cameron as he knows him well.  Sigimor agrees to help Mora as the Camerons hate the fact that her cousin, the Laird’s son, is trying to take the property from her.  With the help of the Camerons, McFingals and Murrays they help Mora figure out a way to save what’s left of her family and her property.

I had mixed emotions about this book.  You’ll see that I gave it 3.5 stars but I have to admit that is for the whole my-cousin-is-trying-to-kill-my-family part of the story – which is most of it.  I liked how the three clans get together to deal with the Ogilvy Laird and his psycho son.  The humor is high in the book and that definitely kept me reading.

What I didn’t care for in this book was the romance.  It was low on romance.  Ok, it was almost non-existent, actually.  I hate to say that but it’s true!  Mora and Gybbon meet and then they start dealing with her family issues immediately afterward.  He randomly kisses her a time or two as he’s feeling possessive but really it’s just about spending time together as they deal with her cousin.  The fact that the author had them falling in love so quickly was a bit of a shock.  I know this is how things happened back then, but I need my romance! Lol

In the end the 3.5 stars are for the family part of the book.  If I had to rate this on romance alone, I’m sorry to say it would have been a 1.5.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5

Murray Family

three-half-stars


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Guest Review: The Scotsman Who Saved Me by Hannah Howell

Posted September 27, 2017 by Tracy in Reviews | 2 Comments

Guest Review: The Scotsman Who Saved Me by Hannah HowellReviewer: Tracy
The Scotsman Who Saved Me by Hannah Howell
Series: Seven Brides for Seven Scotsmen #1
Publisher: Zebra
Publication Date: September 26th 2017
Format: eARC
Genres: Historical Romance, Westerns
Pages: 352
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Goodreads
three-stars

A brutal attack on Emily Stanton’s family has left her for dead . . . until she is found in the woods by a handsome stranger with a thick brogue who vows to protect her. There’s only one problem: As a woman with a noble English background, she has no business keeping company with such a man.

For Scotsman Iain MacEnroy, Emily’s high-tone accent is a bitter reminder of the oppressive regime he left behind. The last thing he needs is to be burdened by the needs of a beautiful, blue-eyed Englishwoman. But taking care of elegant, educated Emily begins to transform Iain in ways he never imagined. Could it be that the deep divisions from the old world no longer apply in the new—and that Iain and Emily can share a passion as lush and wild as the Scottish highlands themselves?

Iain and his brothers find Emily Stanton hiding with her nephew after they first find her sister and husband slaughtered and their house on fire.  Emily had been shot so the MacEnroy brothers take them back to their homestead and heal her.

Emily knows that once she’s healed that she should leave as she’s putting the MacEnroy’s in danger but she feels so safe with them – especially with Iain – that she just can’t make herself go.  Iain thinks that Emily is the most beautiful woman he’s ever met but when he finds out that she’s English gentry he grows cold.  The English gentry are the ones who forced the MacEnroy’s from their home in Scotland and burned it down.  He has no love for them and because of this has a hard time trusting Emily.  Of course as Iain gets to know Emily he finds that she’s nothing like the woman who forced them to flee their Homeland.  As Emily and Iain gets closer as time goes by they find themselves not only fighting for their lives but fighting their attraction to each other as well.

I’m not normally an American Frontier Historical romance lover but this was Hannah Howell so I needed to give it a shot.  It was definitely an decent read but not one I absolutely loved.

The story is that Emily and her sister and brother-in-law fled England because their cousin was after them.  He wanted the title that would go to Emily and her sister’s sons if they had any.  He wanted to make sure that they never had any so that he would eventually inherit the Dukedom– yeah, the guy was nuts.  I know you’re wondering about the line of succession in this book.  Apparently this wasn’t a Royal Dukedom but one that was bestowed on Emily’s ancestor for some reason.  That ancestor had the balls to negotiate about the line of succession and supposedly won so that it didn’t have to be a direct male line.  Emily’s nephew or her own son (if there ever was one) could inherit before their cousin would.

Anyway, with Emily, and soon all of the MacEnroy’s fighting to keep Emily and little Neddy alive, tensions were running high.  Because of this Iain was forced to look at Emily in a new light and realized she was nothing like the woman who had done his family wrong back in Scotland.  When he finally let himself trust and love her he was a changed man.  They made a cute couple.

The story itself was interesting but the book dragged in places. While I used to absolutely love Howell’s writing I’m sorry to say that I wasn’t a huge fan of it in this book.  In fact, it was quite stilted in the beginning and it was a bit disconcerting.  It just didn’t leave me in a good mindset for the rest of the book.  Despite not loving the book I’ll probably pick up the next book in the series to see what happens with the next MacEnroy brother.

Rating: 3 out of 5

three-stars


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Review: Highland Groom by Hannah Howell

Posted September 4, 2014 by Holly in Reviews | 0 Comments

Review: Highland Groom by Hannah HowellReviewer: Holly
Highland Groom by Hannah Howell
Series: Murray Family #8, McEnroy Family #2
Also in this series: Highland Devil (Murray Family #22)
Publisher: Open Road Media
Publication Date: April 29th 2014
Genres: Fiction
Pages: 276
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Goodreads
three-half-stars

Sir Diarmot MacEnroy, deciding his illegitimate children need a mother and his keep needs a proper lady, now stands before the altar with a gentle bride he hopes is too shy to disrupt his life or break his heart. The nuptials, however, are interrupted by the appearance of a flame-haired beauty carrying two babies, boldly claiming that she is his wife and mother of his twin infant sons. Armed with her seven large brothers, she has come to demand her dues. Having waited one year for the return of the handsome laird who wed her, bedded her, then disappeared, Ilsa Campbell MacEnroy takes matters into her own hands and sets out to reclaim the man she briefly and passionately loved. Stunned by his denial, her heart softens when she learns of the injury that has ravaged his memory. Now she faces the nearly impossible task of conquering his past—and his fierce reluctance to share his heart. Though desire flares hot and wild between them, it will take more to win his trust. It will take the magic touch of a woman in love.

Howell follows pretty much the same formula for all her novels: tiny heroine with big personality falls for giant hero who is mistrustful because of a past girlfriend/mistress/wife who screwed him over. She decides to fight for his love by being herself and he falls for her in spite of his vow to hate all women, but must hilarity/angst is had first. This one deviates in that the heroine has 14 large brothers and the hero has 6 bastard children he sort of-kind of forgot to mention to the heroine.

Ilsa thought she’d found the man of her dreams in the dashing Dairmot. He isn’t intimidated by her many brothers, professes to care for her and is quick to handfast with her when they’re discovered trysting. He says he has matters to take care of at home and will collect her shortly, then never returns. She’s devastated, but does her best to hide it. Until she turns up pregnant. When Dairmot still hasn’t shown up almost a year later, when the terms of the handfast are about to be annulled, her brothers force her to set out to find him. The last thing she expected was to find him kneeling before the alter with another woman.

Knowing she doesn’t have a choice about her future since she has twin sons with the man, she resigns herself to marriage to the man she gave her heart to. The one, it turns out, she knew not at all.

Dairmot was attacked almost a year ago and lost his memory. When a tiny redhead with 7 hulking brothers interrupts his wedding, he’s skeptical about their claims. He wants to deny them outright, but he can’t since they have papers saying he did, indeed, handfast with Ilsa. But their timeline puts them in the right frame to have had him attacked, so he vows to beware them all. Until his memory returns or he learns who his enemies are, he’s determined to keep Ilsa and her babies at arms length.

Dairmot was a complete ass, which isn’t new for Howell either. I didn’t mind so much, though, because I read her books for the heroines. Ilsa was  pretty awesome. She took a lot of crap from Dairmot, but she had her limits.  She had a redheaded temper, which made for some fun reading (especially when she punched him and knocked him on his butt). Her brothers are hilarious and added a lot of comic relief.

“So, ye decided upon a handfasting.”

“Aye. Got the lovers to tidy themselves up and took them off to the alehouse to find our cousin Liam. Set the groom in a barrel and had my brother Gilbert there,” he nodded toward a very sturdily built young man with flame red hair and blue eyes, “to sit on it whilst we discussed the matter with Liam.”

Diarmot slouched in his chair and drank his ale, wondering if it was possible for this tale to be any more humiliating.

The mystery plot isn’t anything too exciting. The kids were adorable, though, as were Ilsa’s brothers and cousins. They added so much color to the story.

While much of the story is predictable, I was still entertained. There are some truly hilarious scenes and Ilsa is awesome.

3.75 out of 5

three-half-stars


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Guest Reviews: If He’s Sinful and If He’s Wild by Hannah Howell

Posted August 2, 2010 by Holly in Reviews | 1 Comment

Guest Reviews: If He’s Sinful and If He’s Wild by Hannah HowellReviewer: Holly
If He's Sinful by Hannah Howell
Series: Wherlocke #1

Publication Date: December 1st 2009
Genres: Fiction
Pages: 352
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
Goodreads
four-stars

Secrecy and intrigue ignite dangerous passions in New York Times bestselling author Hannah Howell's seductive new novel. . .
It is whispered throughout London that the members of the Wherlocke family are possessed of certain unexplainable gifts. But Lord Ashton Radmoor is skeptical--until he finds an innocent beauty lying drugged and helpless in the bedroom of a brothel.
The mystery woman is Penelope Wherlocke, and her special gift of sight is leading her deep into a dangerous world of treachery and betrayal. Ashton knows he should forget her, yet he's drawn deeper into the vortex of her life, determined to keep her safe. But Penelope is no ordinary woman, and she's never met the man strong enough to contend with her unusual abilities.
Until now. . .
Praise for the Novels of Hannah Howell
"Howell offers readers another captivating tale."--Booklist
"Another wonderful story filled with adventure, emotion, and laughter." --Romantic Times

I have reviews up at The Good, The Bad and The Unread for the second two books in Hannah Howell‘s Wherlocke series.

If He’s Sinful (Wherlocke Family, Book 2) by Hannah Howell

I’m really glad to see Howell moving away from her Murray series and into new territory. Though I am concerned that she’s planning to exchange one large, eccentric family for another.
I enjoyed this for the most part. I was annoyed that the characters seemed to act so slowly, for it’s obvious early on who the villain is. Even so, I understood their reasons – they couldn’t act without proof. It just seemed it took them a rather long time to realize they needed to get it.

 

4 out of 5

This book is available from Zebra Historical. You can buy it here or here in e-format.

(Wherlocke Family, Book 3) by Hannah Howell

It’s no secret that I’m a total Hannah Howell fangirl. I own every book she’s ever written – and multiple copies of my favorites. I stopped reading the Murray series awhile back because I felt it was becoming very repetitive, but that hasn’t stopped me from buying them.
Because she’s become kind of repetitive, I wasn’t sure what to expect from this new series. I read the second book, If He’s Sinful, and enjoyed it, but the slow pacing bothered me. The first in the series, If He’s Wicked, I can’t seem to recall right now (I think I read it, but the details are hazy). I’m thinking I’ll go back and re-read it now, however. The pacing issues of the second book were cleared up in this one, and I really enjoyed the overall story and the characters.

 

4.25 out of 5

This book is available from Zebra Historical. You can buy it here or here in e-format.

four-stars


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Lightning Review: Highland Wedding by Hannah Howell

Posted March 8, 2008 by Holly in Reviews | 1 Comment

Lightning Review: Highland Wedding by Hannah HowellReviewer: Holly
Highland Wedding by Hannah Howell
Series: Highland Brides #2
Also in this series: His Bonnie Bride, The Highlander's Promise (Highland Brides #6)
Publisher: Open Road Media
Publication Date: April 29th 2014
Genres: Fiction
Pages: 296
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
Goodreads
three-stars

The vivid scar that spans Sir Iain MacLagan’s cheek is a daily reminder of the wife he lost—and of the enemy that still stalks him. Commanded by Scotland’s king to remarry in order to unite two powerful border clans, lain reluctantly weds Islaen MacRoth, a woman whose delicate appearance belies a playful, seductive nature that proves dangerously attractive to a man who has vowed never to jeopardize his heart, or his loved ones, again . . . 

Raised with eleven boisterous brothers, Islaen has little time for foolish romantic notions. Even so, she hoped for more than a forced marriage to a man who shares her bed, but not her life. Step by step, Islaen sets out to wear down Iain's defenses. 

This is the sequel to His Bonnie Bride, one of my most favorite books of all time. Unfortunately, I think perhaps my expectations were too high, because this one fell far short.

Both the hero and heroine were good characters, and they plot had the same elements I’ve always enjoyed in HH novels before, but for some reason, this one just didn’t work for me. It might have been because the story was just a bit too real. I realize there was a lot of fighting in this time period (especially in the Highlands) but it seemed to me there was more violence in this story than there normally is. And while that doesn’t usually bother me (honestly? I like a bit of violence in my novels) this one was just over the top with it. Or maybe I just wasn’t in the mood for it?

Regardless, though well written, it’s not a favorite or one I’ll be picking up again any time soon.

3.0 out of 5

The Series:
His Bonnie Bride
Highland Wedding

three-stars


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