Mairin Stuart is the illegitimate daughter of a king which means there are many Scottish Lairds who want to marry her. She has a rich dowry and prime lands which will go to her husband. For this reason, Mairin has been hiding in an abbey for the last 10 years. Now, her sanctuary has been breached by Laird Cameron's men.
Having no choice but to leave with these men, Mairin continues to think of ways to escape. Along the way, a young boy is captured trying to steal one of the horses. Unable to let the soldiers kill the child, Mairin protects him with her life.
Crispin tells of being stolen when he left his father's keep to meet his uncle. After getting away he attempted to find his way home, only to get lost. Mairin vows to keep Crispin as safe as she can but she quickly finds her own life in danger after she refuses to marry Laird Cameron.
With the help of a sympathetic maid, Mairin and Crispin make their way to his home only to find Crispin's Uncle Alaric looking for Crispin. Alaric is appalled at the beating that Mairin has received and appreciative of her care of Crispin. He knows his course of action though is to return to McCabe land and return Crispin to his older brother, Laird Ewan McCabe.
Ewan isn't sure about Mairin but he's thrilled to have his son back. Mairin only wants a horse and food so she can more on and find a place to hide. Ewan isn't having any of that. He wants to know who this woman is and finds himself becoming interested in her spirited ways.
Mairin knew she'd have to marry someone and finds herself thinking Ewan wouldn't be a bad choice. Cameron is still looking for her and she has no desire to find herself subject to hospitality again.
With the McCabe clan needing the dowry Mairin would bring the clan, Ewan is thinking marrying her would be a good solution.
Can they work this out? Will Cameron leave Mairin alone once she's married?
This historical Scottish tale keeps its readers enthralled and entertained with romance and intrigue.
The characters are fantastic. Mairin knows her worth but also is aware of the restrictions women have in the society in which she lives. Still, she has a habit of speaking her mind and while she always means well, things don't always work out well. Ewan has been married before to someone he grew up with and cared about. She died after Cameron attacked the McCabe keep. He's after revenge. He's also loving towards his son and protective of his people. Crispin is a loving, friendly child whereas Ewan's brothers are loyal but fierce warriors. Each is unique and interesting in their own way making you want to know more about them.
The era portrayed has been researched and researched well which also comes through. There was a King David of Scotland who did fight with his nephew from the throne for about 10 years. This was a time of war chaos and clans needing alliances. Each clan supported itself so a raid that wiped out the food supplies could wipe out the clan. The harsh realities of this time came across but so did the dependence of the members of the clan and the loyalties that a good clan leader can inspire.
The romance, the most important part of a romance novel, was awesome. Yes, there is sex, some of it a little more graphic than some readers might like but none as graphic as Ms Banks' erotic romances. More important than sex is the emotions that the characters feel. The emotions are real and alive. There is no doubt when love is expressed any more than there is no doubt when tempers flare.
I absolutely loved this book. From start to finish, it kept my attention and I had no desire to put it down. This book had it all; power plays, betrayal, humor, love and passion. What more could you ask for in a historical romance?
What is even better, the next book is set up and there is only about a month between the first two books! I can't wait!!!!
Bestselling author Maya Banks’s beguiling new trilogy features three unforgettable brothers risking everything to save their clan and their legacy—and to surrender their hearts to love.
Ewan McCabe, the eldest, is a warrior determined to vanquish his enemy. Now, with the time ripe for battle, his men are ready and Ewan is poised to take back what is his—until a blue-eyed, raven-haired temptress is thrust upon him. Mairin may be the salvation of Ewan’s clan, but for a man who dreams only of revenge, matters of the heart are strange territory to conquer.
The illegitimate daughter of the king, Mairin possesses prized property that has made her a pawn—and wary of love. Her worst fears are realized when she is rescued from peril only to be forced into marriage by her charismatic and commanding savior, Ewan McCabe. But her attraction to her ruggedly powerful new husband makes her crave his surprisingly tender touch; her body comes alive under his sensual mastery. And as war draws near, Mairin’s strength, spirit, and passion challenge Ewan to conquer his demons—and embrace a love that means more than revenge and land.