Review: Spell of the Highlander by Karen Marie Moning

Posted May 10, 2008 by Holly in Reviews | 7 Comments

Review: Spell of the Highlander by Karen Marie MoningReviewer: Holly
Spell of the Highlander by Karen Marie Moning
Series: Highlander #7
Also in this series: The Dark Highlander
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Publication Date: 2005
Genres: Fiction
Pages: 307
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Series Rating: four-stars

Powerful. Sensual. Seductive. He is all that is shamelessly erotic in a man. In her sexiest Highlander novel yet, New York Times bestselling author Karen Moning stirs up a sizzling brew of ancient mystery and modern passion as she brings together a devilishly handsome Celtic warrior trapped in time . . . and the woman who’s about to pay the ultimate price for freeing him. Age-old secrets haunt them. Deadly danger and irresistible desire shadow their every move. It’s a relationship for the ages. And all that separates them is a mere thirteen hundred years. . . .
Jessi St. James has got to get a life. Too many hours studying ancient artifacts has given the hardworking 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 silvery 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, eleven centuries ago Cian MacKeltar was trapped inside the Dark Glass, one of four coveted Unseelie Hallows, objects of unspeakable power. When the Dark Glass is stolen, an ancient enemy will stop at nothing to reclaim it, destroying everything in his path–including the one woman who may just hold the key to breaking the ninth-century Highlander’s dark spell. For Jessi, the muscle-bound sex god in the mirror is not only tantalizingly 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.
Yet even as Cian’s insatiable hunger begins to work its dark magic on Jessi, his ancient enemy is about to obtain the final and most dangerous of the Unseelie Hallows–and the ninth-century Highlander must stop him from getting it. Nothing less than the very fabric of the universe and two passionately entwined lives are at stake–as Cian and Jessi fight to claim the kind of love that comes along but once in an ice age. . . .

Spell of the Highlander is the 7th book in Karen Marie Moning‘s Higlander Series.

The story is at times funny, sensual and hypnotic. KMM is a master at weaving magical, mystical worlds that draw her readers in and wrap them up in her reality.

Jessi St. James is an ordinary girl, working on getting yet another degree and reaching her life goal. When she’s suddenly thrust into a very strange, very unbelievable situation – a man in a mirror? Puh-leez – she does what any sane girl would do…pretends it was all a dream and goes on about her day like nothing ever happened.

Unfortunately, she’s forced to face the reality of the situation when the six and a half foot Celtic sex GOD steps out of a mirror and commands her to “Remove that woolen, woman, and show me your breasts.” Suddenly, she finds herself at the mercy of a powerful Druid with no qualms about using whatever means necessary to get what he wants….revenge against the powerful black wizard who trapped him in the mirror to begin with.

I love this book. So far, this is my umpteenth re-read and I’ve yet to find a single flaw with it.

Cian is the perfect man. Tall, dark, handsome, very alpha and an absolute horndog. Jessi St. James is a wonderful counterpart for him, too. She’s sassy, smart and has a great sense of humor. And though she’s forced to deal with a very strange situation, she definitely makes the most of it. I thought she was a very believable heroine, not at all like so many others. I’ve heard many others complain that KMM’s heroines are TSTL, or unbelievable, or whatever, but I disagree.

The book is filled with humor, steamy sex scenes and lighthearted banter. Yet, for all that, it’s still very dramatic and tugs at all of your emotions. Or it sure did mine. Honestly? My fate was sealed the second she licked his back.

Seeing the MacKeltar twins, Dageus and Drustan, again was awesome. I love that KMM had them play such a big part in the plot. My only regret is that Adam Black was sadly missing from this story..and from the sounds of it, any future ones as well.

KMM also set this up perfectly for her next MacKeltar book. Unfortunately, I don’t think she’s planning to publish it anytime soon..if ever. Yes, I’m still bitter. No, I don’t plan on getting over it anytime soon. Just so you know.

Some of my favorite quotes:

“Look, I’ve been thinking, what’s your plan, anyway?”
“To bed you.”
“No, I mean, your plan that might actually work.”
“Ah, that plan. That would be to cross this room right now and kiss you until you start rearing off your clothing and begging me to f—“


Her life or her “virtue.”
It bore considering that it was a virtue she’d very nearly given him of her own accord.
Granted, she’d hardly been in her right mind at the time, but still.
She got in the damn car.


“I will rue for all eternity every moment of suffering I’ve caused you. The entire time I’m burning in Hell, I’ll regret each tear I made you weep. But if Hell were the price for twenty days with you, I’d condemn myself again and again.”


He searched her gaze a long silent moment. “You truly donna ken it, do you? Excepting with you, Jessica. You, lass, are the exception to everything,” he said softly.
“You mean, you’re not just stuck with me? You like me?” She wanted to kick herself the moment she blurted the stupid question. Puh-thetic, Jessi, she winced inwardly. That was worse than the “I carried a watermelon ” line from Dirty Dancing.
Suddenly he smiled, and the sadness was vanquished by whisky heat. “Aye, Jessica, I like you. And I’m not just stuck with you. You fit me here, woman.” He thumped his chest with his fist.
Wow. He wasn’t a man of many words, but when he used them, he certainly used the right ones. You fit me here. You are the exception to everything.


Overall I really enjoyed the plot, humor and characters. Highly recommend.

4.5 out of 5

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

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7 responses to “Review: Spell of the Highlander by Karen Marie Moning

  1. God I love this book. I think it might be my favorite out of the highlander series. Well they are all so delicious that it is hard to choose. I have reread this book twice and considering I haven’t ever reread any other romance book (yet) that is saying something.

    (I only started reading romance about 2 years ago and that is why I haven’t reread many books yet. I am still trying to catch up to everyone else!)

  2. Chantal

    Yup, I love it, too.
    Cian is soooooo hot.
    *Dreamy sigh*

    How come I can’t get a sex God to step out of any the mirrors here? No fair.

  3. Moning does know how to write AMAZING heroes doesn’t she! Her heroines aren’t always that crash hot though, but Jessi wasn’t too bad!

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