Tag: Claire Robyns

Guest Review: The Devil of Jedburgh by Claire Robyns

Posted February 16, 2012 by Tracy in Reviews | 0 Comments

Tracy’s review of The Devil of Jedburgh by Claire Robyns.

 

Raised on rumours of The Devil of Jedburgh, Breghan McAllen doesn’t want an arranged marriage to the beast. The arrogant border laird is not the romantic, sophisticated husband Breghan dreams of—despite the heat he stirs within her.

In need of an heir, Arran has finally agreed to take a wife, but when he sees Breghan’s fragile beauty, he’s furious. He will not risk the life of another maiden by getting her with child. Lust prompts him to offer a compromise: necessary precautions, and handfasting for a year and a day, after which Breghan will be free. For a chance to control her own future, Breghan makes a deal with the Devil.

Passion quickly turns to love, but Arran still has no intention of keeping the lass, or making her a mother. He loves her too much to lose her. But when a treasonous plot threatens queen and country, Breghan has to prove only she is woman enough to stand by his side.

Breghan is not excited about getting married to a man that she thinks is truly the devil. She gets on her horse and rides the day before the wedding and ends up far from home – farther than she intended. Or did she purposely head far off as to avoid the man. She ends up hurt and being taken care of by three strapping men. She soon realizes that one of them, the one she’s most attracted to is her soon to be husband and figures that there is a lot of rumor in the stories that she’s heard of him all her life. But she’s still not happy about the marriage. She talks to him, calling herself Bree so he won’t know she is his intended bride, and questions him about what he wants in a wife. She soon discovers that the man who wants to take her to wife only wants a brood mare! He wants some strapping woman to bed and make babies. He doesn’t care about love or companionship or even if she’s attractive.

When Bree and Arran finally make it back to Breghan’s father’s keep all hell has broken loose because of her desertion overnight. Breghan’s father is madder than a hornet and isn’t willing to listen to a word that she says about anything. Arran was certainly no expecting a slim beauty when he made the deal with Breghan’s father. Since Breghan is the 13th child in her family and she has 12 strapping brothers Arran assumed that she would be a big strapping girl. Wrong. Arran agrees to a handfasting rather than a marriage (handfasting used to last 1 year and 1 day) and to let Breghan decide how their future would go thinking that she would bow out. Breghan agrees to the handfasting, which shocks Arran, but she has her own motives. She makes her father agree that if she completes the handfasting then her father will let her choose her own suitor after that rather than choosing one for her. He agrees.

Breghan and Arran head off to Arran’s home and he’s more than kind – giving Breghan time to get used to the idea of the bedding. He soon has her in his bed but he pulls out as he doesn’t want to get her with child. He has his secrets from his past and the demons that he lives with that make him want to prevent a pregnancy. As the months go on, however, they both fall in love – not that they’ll come clean about that – and Breghan soon takes matters into her own hands to force Arran’s hand. Yeah, life doesn’t always turn out the way you think it will.

This was a great medieval story. I didn’t love the arguing that occurred between Arran and Breghan during the first part of the book but it was so very realistic I just had to keep reading. They were both so stinking stubborn but so very much alike that I was pulling for them from the start.

While I can’t say that I loved the deception that Breghan pulls on Arran but I understood it completely. As I said they were both incredibly stubborn! There was a bit of political intrigue in the book that, while it showed us what was going on in the kingdom in Edinburgh, I just didn’t think really fit in with the whole story. It almost seemed like it was put in just to put the couple in a stressful situation that forced them together. I liked those parts of it, I just thought them unnecessary.

Overall a really good medieval love story.

Rating: 4.25 out of 5

You can read more from Tracy at Tracy’s Place

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

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What I Read Last Week

Posted January 30, 2012 by Tracy in Features | 7 Comments

Greetings!
Well it was a quiet week at my house for most of the week. Echo the kitty is doing well. She’s just as adorable and lovable as she was when we first brought her home. I’ve never been a cat person but I just love her to pieces. Of course I’m not in charge of changing her litter box so that makes me love her even more. lol
Sunday morning we did get word that my husband’s father had suffered a stroke. He’s 73 but really a strong healthy man. He apparently had a small brain bleed that caused the stroke but they got him to the hospital quickly and he’s doing really well. Yesterday when we travelled to see him he was just as much as a smart ass as he usually is which really put our minds at ease. 🙂 From what I understand he’ll be out of ICU soon and then home some time this week. He’s excited to get home as he can’t get any sleep in the hospital and it’s making him crazy, the poor guy. My hubby’s dealing with the situation really well which puts my mind at ease. He’s a pretty easy-going guy (he’d have to be to stay married to me all this time) and doesn’t get anxious about stuff so that’s good.
So what did I read this week?
First up was a really great romantic suspense book called The Past Came Hunting by Donnell Ann Bell. This was the story of Melanie who, when she was 17, got a ride from someone she thought was a good Samaritan. He ended up being a murderer and she was caught in the middle, thought a conspirator and sent to prison. Now it’s 15 years later and she moves to a different city – right next to the office who arrested her 15 years ago – Joe. Not only do we have the romance brewing in this story but the murderer who’s getting out of prison and his vendetta against the woman. You can read my review here if you’d like. 4.5 out of 5
Next up was The Devil of Jedburgh by Claire Robyns. This medieval romance was about a man who was looking for a woman to bear him children. He contracts with a father to marry his daughter because the man has 12 strapping sons and 1 daughter – he figures she’ll be as fertile as her mother. When he sees her, however, and she’s just a little bitty thing he knows that she can’t provide him with the heirs he needs. They handfast and of course don’t PLAN on falling in love, but they do. They argue horribly and are both stubborn arses but it was a good book and well worth the read. 4.25 out of 5 (I posted my review for The Book Binge so I’ll let you know when that goes up.)
Blank Slate Kate by Heather Wardell was the story of a woman, aged 32, who wakes up one morning in a strange bed and can’t remember the previous 15 years. She thinks she’s 17 but soon learns the truth. The story told of her dealing with life, accepting that she may never get her memories back and finding her family. It was good book and very interesting. Told in the first person present tense the story won’t be for everyone but it worked for me. 4 out of 5 (This was for The Book Binge so I’ll let you know when my review posts)
Permanently Legless by JL Merrow was the only m/m book I read this week (I know!) but it was a good one. The story was very short so we don’t get to know the characters all that well but it was very sweet and touching. The story was about a soldier who goes off to war and comes back legless. He runs into a guy that he hooked up with prior to leaving and though he believes the guy won’t have anything to do with him he’s wrong, wrong, wrong. 4 out of 5
Secrets of a Lost Summer by Carla Neggers was my next read. This was the story of Olivia who quits her job in Boston and moves to her hometown to open a destination/retreat location. She meets the owner of the house next door and they not only hit it off but they discover a mystery as well. A very good book that I really enjoyed reading. You can read my review here. 4 out of 5
Next was Matched by Ally Condie – my Tracy’s TBR Challenge read. This is a YA futuristic/dystopian novel about Cassia, a girl who gets “Matched”. This means that the person that she matches with is her almost perfect match and they will have nearly perfect children together. The boy she matches with is her best friend Xander – which is highly unusual – but she’s thrilled. Except when she puts the microcard in to view his data (which she knows most of) she sees another face flash across the screen – Ky. She starts to think about Ky and spend more time with him – and they fall in love. But Ky is what is called an Aberration and he can’t be matched with anyone – even if The Society would let them choose their own matches. The book goes on with the somewhat love triangle between Ky, Cassia and Xander but there’s a ton of stuff going on and eventually the Ky and Cassia get separated. It was a really good book from about the second half til the end but I have to say that the first half almost made me stop reading. There was SO much description of the world and the kids’ thoughts that I was almost begging for dialogue! As I said though the book got really good in the second half and kept me turning pages. 3.5 out of 5
My last book of the week was the sequel to Matched and it was called Crossed by Ally Condie. The story picks up a few months after book 1 ended and each character is trying to deal with the cards they’ve been dealt. Cassia is in a work camp and is trying desperately to find where Ky was taken. Xander is still considered her Match and visits her but she’s very intent on finding Ky. She eventually finds him but when they learn more about each other and the possible rebellion going on against The Society they find that they may not want the same things out of life. It was an good book but it had a slower pace than the first one. Ky and Cassia are already in love but their trying to deal with what their future will look like and how they can possibly be together. The triangle with Xander, we think for the most part, is pretty much decided in Ky’s favor but the author throws us for a loop right at the end of the story. No real decisions were made and we’re left hanging a bit and for me it was really frustrating…probably because I can’t decide if either of the boys are workth fighting for. lol 3.5 out of 5
My Book Binge reviews that posted last week:
Happy Reading!

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