Series: Highlanders Series

Throwback Thursday Review: Spell of the Highlander by Karen Marie Moning

Posted August 2, 2018 by Rowena in Reviews | 6 Comments

Throwback Thursday Review: Spell of the Highlander by Karen Marie MoningReviewer: Rowena
Spell of the Highlander (Highlanders #7) by Karen Marie Moning
Series: Highlanders series #7
Also in this series: An English Bride In Scotland, An English Bride In Scotland (Highlanders, #1), The Highlander Takes a Bride, Falling for the Highlander, An English Bride In Scotland (Highlanders, #1), Surrender to the Highlander, The Highlander's Promise (Highlanders Series #6)
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group, Dell
Publication Date: August 28th 2007
Genres: Paranormal Romance
Pages: 394
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Goodreads
five-stars

It's taken him eleven centuries to find the right woman. He's not about to lose her now.

Jessi St. James has GOT to get a life. Too many hours studying ancient artifacts has given the archaeology student a bad case of sex on the brain. So she figures she must be dreaming when she spies a gorgeous half-naked man staring out at her from inside the glass of an ancient mirror. But when a split-second decision saves her from a terrifying attempt on her life, Jessi suddenly finds herself confronting six and a half feet of smoldering INSATIABLE alpha male.

Heir to the arcane magic of his Druid ancestors, Cian MacKeltar was trapped inside the Dark Glass eleven centuries ago. And when the Dark Glass is stolen, an ancient enemy will stop at nothing to reclaim it. For Jessi, the sex god in the mirror is not only tantalisingly real, he's offering his protection—from exactly what, Jessi doesn't know. And all he wants in exchange is the exquisite pleasure of sharing her bed....

Every Thursday, we’ll be posting throwback reviews of our favorite and not-so-favorite books. Enjoy!

Rowena: Holy cow, this reviews brings back memories of how freaking obsessed Holly and I used to be over these sexy Highlanders. Oh, Cian and his mirror, LOL!

This review was originally posted on August 1, 2007.

I’m in a slump, y’all.

Nothing that I’ve picked up has been able to catch and keep my attention for longer than fifteen minutes and it really sucks but, I did pick this book up last week and was sifting through it, hoping that this book would bring me out of my reading funk.

A Karen Marie Moning is a good choice to kick off a reading slump because I was instantly wrapped right up in Cian and Jessi’s world. I was loving the whole mirror business and the whole paranormal aspect of the story, the magic, the good versus evil business and really, the biggest thing for me was the Dageus MacKeltar business.

I was all over that mug in this book, again.

This whole book was really good for me, from the total alphaness of Cian and his “voice” that works on EVERYONE but Jessi, I loved the whole getting to Scotland thing and just the bond that formed between Cian and Jessi. This book seriously had it all, sexy heroes, steamy plotline and out of this world characters that just heated up page after delicious page.

The scene where Dageus takes off with the mirror and Cian is ripping into him because he left Jessi vulnerable and just that whole scene was one great big AWWWWWW scene for me because you could see just how stubborn Cian was and you could tell how much Jessi had come to mean to him and it was just a fantabulous scene.

This whole book was one great big roller coaster for me, it had it’s high moments where I was rootin’ Jessi and Cian on and it had it’s moments where I wanted to kick someone because the evil dudes were just so evil but I love the world that KMM has created with the MacKeltar men and I just love the way KMM tells her stories, with lots of feeling, character development and just every damn thing about everything.

By the end of the book, I felt like I knew Cian and Jessi and I was just so hot damn happy they got their happy ending and I was hella loving all the Dageus and Drustan in this book too, gosh I love those twins. And that ending is something else, man I just effing love stuff like this.

This book gets a great big A for me because it was the hot damn bomb diggity with a cherry on top! Read it if you haven’t but first read the others, I skipped all the other books because this one was calling me…

Grade: 5 out of 5

Highlanders

five-stars


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Guest Review: The Highlander’s Promise by Lynsay Sands

Posted July 3, 2018 by Tracy in Reviews | 3 Comments

Guest Review: The Highlander’s Promise by Lynsay SandsReviewer: Tracy
The Highlander's Promise (Highlanders Series #6) by Lynsay Sands
Series: Highlanders Series #6
Also in this series: An English Bride In Scotland, An English Bride In Scotland (Highlanders, #1), The Highlander Takes a Bride, Falling for the Highlander, An English Bride In Scotland (Highlanders, #1), Surrender to the Highlander, Spell of the Highlander (Highlanders #7)
Publisher: Avon
Publication Date: June 26, 2018
Format: eARC
Point-of-View: Third
Genres: Historical Romance
Pages: 384
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Goodreads
four-stars

Aulay Buchanan has retreated to his clan’s hunting lodge for a few days of relaxation. But the raven-haired beauty he pulls from the ocean puts an end to any chance of rest. Though he christens her Jetta, she knows nothing of her real identity, save that someone is trying to kill her. As she recovers, it will not be easy for Aulay to protect her and keep her honor intact when she mistakenly believes they are man and wife.

Jetta sees beyond Aulay’s scars to the brave, loyal warrior she’s proud to call her own. But as the attempts on her life grow more brazen, Jetta realizes that not all is as she believes. And if Aulay is not her husband, can she trust the desire flaring in his eyes, or his promise to defend her with his life?

Aulay Buchanan was wounded in battle and his face severely scarred – the same battle that killed his twin brother.  Aulay’s betrothed at the time screamed in horror after looking at him and his facial scar and refused to marry him.  It’s been years since then, but Aulay is still effected by the thought of his ex-betrothed and the averted eyes he sees in his own keep from the female servants.

Aulay goes away for a couple of weeks each year to his hunting lodge because his mood gets black around the time his brother died.  This year his brother Alick goes with him, despite his wishes, and they go out fishing in the ocean.  They quickly come across a mast from a ship and there’s actually a woman tied to it!  She’s alive and they take her back and try to heal her with help from others.  She’s out for about three weeks but when she awakens she doesn’t know who she is.  She sees Aulay beside her bed and when she asks if he’s her brother, he tells her no.  She surmises that the only other people who would be in her room would be a father and a husband and since he was too young to be her father, he was her husband!  Aulay’s brother, Rory tells Aulay that it’s better for him to let her think that she’s married to him as it will ease her mind.

When Jetta (the name they give the mysterious woman because she has jet black hair) had awoken when first found she mentioned that someone was trying to kill her.  Because of this Aulay makes it his duty to protect her, but when she doesn’t cringe from him and tells him how handsome he is, Aulay starts falling hard and fast for the unknown woman.

We read about Aulay in the previous books with the Buchanan’s and my heart always went out to him because of his scar and his feelings about the way he looked.  It had to be hard on him, but the scar had improved over the years and by the time Jetta “meets” him, it’s much improved. She looks beyond the scar to the man inside and she likes what she sees.  I loved that Sands paired Aulay with a woman who didn’t just put up with his scar but found the beauty in him as well.  I had no doubt that’s what she’d do, but she did it in a really great way and I found myself liking Jetta’s a lot.

The romance was good and the small suspense plot had me guessing, which was good.  I enjoyed getting to meet all the Buchanans again and seeing what they were up to.

Overall this was a great book and one I really enjoyed reading.

Rating: 4 out of 5

Highlanders

four-stars


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Guest Review: Surrender to the Highlander by Lynsay Sands

Posted March 9, 2018 by Tracy in Reviews | 0 Comments

Guest Review: Surrender to the Highlander by Lynsay SandsReviewer: Tracy
Surrender to the Highlander by Lynsay Sands
Publisher: Avon
Publication Date: January 30th 2018
Format: eARC
Genres: Historical Romance
Pages: 384
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Goodreads
four-stars

Edith Drummond owes her life to Niels Buchanan and his brothers. Waking after an illness to a castle overrun by rugged Highlanders is disconcerting, but so is learning that she’s slowly being poisoned. Niels insists on staying by her side, and Edith soon discovers that even more dangerous is her wild attraction to the fierce warrior.

Niels has never met a more courageous—or enticing—woman than Lady Edith. The idea of such a bonny lass being forced to enter a nunnery is more than any red-blooded Scotsman could bear. He’ll gladly marry her himself. But while sweeping her off her feet is easy, it’ll take all his skill to defeat her family’s relentless enemies, and convince her to surrender to his sweet embrace.

Neils Buchanan and his brothers are sent to check on Edith Drummond.  Their sister Saidh had sent several messages to her good friend Edith and hasn’t received word in return, which is not like Edith.  When the brothers arrive, they have a tough time gaining entry into the estate but when they hear that Edith is on her deathbed they manage to get in.  It appears that Edith’s father and two brothers have already died and Edith has been sick for weeks, just hanging on by a thread.  Rory Buchanan, a healer, diagnoses poison and treats accordingly. Soon Edith takes a turn for the better.

The brothers and Edith come to realize that her family has been targeted and they set about trying to figure out who the murderer is, which isn’t easy.  While they investigate, Neils protects Edith.  She believes her brother Brody, who is now Laird, and his wife will send her to a nunnery as soon as he gets back (he thought the castle had a catching illness so he left to avoid it) but after almost acting on their lust for each other, Neils asks Edith to marry him.  They liked each other but never thought they’d fall in love, especially when their fighting for Edith’s life.

This was another great book in the Highlanders series by Sands.  I’ve really enjoyed all of the books so far and this was no different.  I loved both Edith and Neils and thought they were perfect together.

Edith was an amazing woman.  She had been through hell with the deaths in her family and had almost died herself but in the end was looking out for everyone else, not herself.  She was kind, giving, thoughtful, smart.  I just loved her!  Neils was a good man as well and I loved how up front he was with Edith when he proposed.  He told her what he admired about her but admitted he didn’t love her.  That sounds harsh but I was happy to hear that he didn’t try to trick her in any way.  He was just as thoughtful as Edith and I loved watching these two fall in love.

The mystery part of the series was a good one.  I didn’t figure out “who-dun-it” until right before the characters started figuring things out.  Sands did a great job of making us think it was others and I loved that.

Overall a great book and I’m looking forward to reading the next in the series, which will be Neils’ brother Auley’s book.

Rating: 4 out of 5

four-stars


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Review: An English Bride in Scotland by Lynsay Sands

Posted January 17, 2018 by Rowena in Reviews | 2 Comments

Review: An English Bride in Scotland by Lynsay SandsReviewer: Rowena
An English Bride In Scotland (Highlanders, #1) by Lynsay Sands
Series: Highlanders Series #1
Also in this series: An English Bride In Scotland (Highlanders, #1), The Highlander's Promise (Highlanders Series #6)
Publisher: Harper Collins, Avon
Publication Date: June 25th 2013
Genres: Historical Romance
Pages: 384
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Goodreads
four-stars

The first in a new historical series set in the Highlands of Scotland, from Lynsay Sands, the New York Times bestselling author of the Argeneau vampire series and countless historical romances.

Annabel was about to take the veil to become a nun when her mother suddenly arrives at the Abbey to take her home… so that she can marry the Scottish laird who is betrothed to her runaway sister! She knows nothing about being a wife, nothing about how to run a household, and definitely nothing about the marriage bed!

But from the moment Ross MacKay sets eyes on Annabel, he is taken with his shy sweet bride… and the fact that she's blessed with lush curves only makes him utter his own prayers of thanks. But when an enemy endangers her life, he'll move the Highlands themselves to save her. For though Annabel's not the bride he planned for, she's the only woman he desires…

An English Bride in Scotland is my first book by Lynsay Sands and I’m happy to report that it was an enjoyable romance with charming characters and a sweet romance between the hero and heroine. This book has an old school Julie Garwood feel to it and that was enough for me to enjoy the heck out of it.

Ross MacKay is in England to collect his bride, an engagement that his father brought about after his intended’s father saved his father’s life. He’s there to honor the promise that his father made, no matter how he feels about it.

Annabel was raised in an abbey and was just about to take her vows to become a nun when her mother rushes to the abbey to whisk Annabel away to keep a promise for her father. She’s to marry a Scotsman in her sister’s place since her sister ran away with the stableman’s son. To say that everything happened so fast, is putting it mildly since Annabel damn near got whiplash from the whirlwind that became her life once her mother came back into it.

It took only one look at Annabel for Ross to be certain that he wanted Annabel for a wife and I really loved seeing him fall head over heels in love with her. Annabel was such a sweet heroine, easy to love that it didn’t take me long at all to fall in love with her myself.

The story follows Ross as he tries to figure out who is trying to harm his wife. On their journey from England back to his home in Scotland, they have been set upon by a mysterious man who seems hellbent on something but nobody knows what. Ross and Annabel are newlyweds and they’re learning each other and Annabel is learning to live in a new place and there’s a lot here to keep the reader interested and I thought Lynsay Sands did a great job of bringing the story together.

I can’t say that this was my absolute favorite book ever but it was a sweet story that I enjoyed and I enjoyed it enough that I want to continue this series in 2018 so I just might do that. Annabel’s sister was awful and she just kept right on being awful with each passing page so that was a bummer because every time she called Annabel “Belly”, I wanted to punch her in the face. I thought the mystery surrounding the stranger that kept popping up around Annabel was pretty weak since I figured it out not very long into the story but even still, the book was fun and the romance was sweet so I didn’t mind much.

Grade: 3.75 out of 5

Highlanders Series

four-stars


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Guest Review: Falling for the Highlander by Lynsay Sands

Posted December 30, 2016 by Tracy in Reviews | 0 Comments

Guest Review: Falling for the Highlander by Lynsay SandsReviewer: Tracy
Falling for the Highlander by Lynsay Sands
Publisher: Avon
Publication Date: January 31st 2017
Format: eARC
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
Goodreads
three-half-stars

Lady Murine Carmichael has known her share of bad luck. But when her debt-ridden half-brother tries to sell her off in exchange for a few Scottish horses, it’s the final straw. If keeping her freedom means escaping through harsh countryside alone, so be it. She has barely begun her journey when she lands an unlikely escort—the brawny Highlander who just refused to buy her virtue.

Dougall Buchanan was disgusted by Lord Danvries’ shameful offer, but Murine herself tempts him beyond measure. Even bedraggled and dusty, the lass glows with beauty and bravery. Dougall wants to do more than just help her flee. He wants to protect her—with his life and his heart—if she’ll only let him. For Murine may be pursued by a powerful foe, but nothing compares to the fiery courage of a Highlander in love.

Murine Carmichael has seen a lot of death in the past few years.  Her brothers and her betrothed were killed then her mother died not long after that.  Her father then was ill and but had died just when she thought he was getting better.  Her half-brother, Montrose, picked her up and told her that he was now her guardian.  While Murine wasn’t thrilled with the idea she dealt with it.  She even managed to deal with it when Montrose gambled away her dower.  When Dougall Buchanan and his brothers show Montrose fine horses and he can’t pay for them he tries to bargain with them.  Dougall’s not interested.  Then Montrose gets desperate and offers his sister as payment – to use until he gets tired of her.  Dougall, his brothers and Murine are all shocked and disgusted at this suggestion.  Obviously Dougall refuses and leaves.

After hearing another suggestion by Montrose about offering her up to one of his neighbors for coin, Murine decides it’s time to get the hell out of dodge.  She knows that traveling alone is extremely dangerous but figures facing death is better than what Montrose has planned for her. She heads off on her pet bull, Henry, to try to reach one of her friends.  Not far from her brother’s house she runs into the Buchanan brothers.  They are nice enough to hide her from his brothers and agree to take her to her friend, their sister, Saidh. Along the road there are many perils and accidents that beset the group and mostly directed at Murine. During the course of the travel Dougall and Murine get close and lust ensues that soon turns to more.  Unfortunately with Montrose trailing the Buchanan’s and Murine will they be able to stay together?

This was a cute story.  I really liked a lot of the book and was pulling for Dougall and Murine throughout.  The camaraderie between the Buchanan brothers was another plus to this book as they were close but still had scuffles like most brothers do.

I really liked Dougall in this book.  He was stubborn and strong-willed but protective and kind as well.  He had morals and was a decent guy whose parents had raised him right.  Murine took a bit of getting used to.  She was kind of oblivious a lot of the time which annoyed me.  She didn’t seem the type to be oblivious so when it happened it was frustrating. Examples…she was running from her brother but when she was traveling and saw people in the woods, she never said anything? She thought she heard someone in the house she was in by herself but never mentions it to Dougall when he comes in right after?  There were so many things that she questioned to herself but never once said anything to Dougall or his brothers.  What the hell?  Why not? She was trying to get away from her brother but she sees random people or hears random things and shrugs it off? Uh, no, don’t believe it for a minute. In most Sands historicals the heroine always ends up doing some crazy things but this just takes the cake. Now, that being said she was strong when she needed to be.  She saved lives when there was a fire as she had saved Saidh’s life in a previous book.  She kept getting hit in the head and kept getting up.  She got shot by an arrow but took it like a trooper.  She was a good person for the most part, really.

Overall it was a good story that I had some issues with.  It certainly won’t stop me from reading more of Sands’ historical novels as their more on the fun/slapstick fun side and I like that about them.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5

three-half-stars


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