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Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Highland Legacy by B. J. Scott

Highland Legacy by B. J. Scott
Publisher: Soul Mate Publishing
Genre: Historical
Length: Full length (235 pages)
Heat Level: Spicy
Rating: 4.5 stars
Reviewed by Camellia

Faced with an abhorrent betrothal, Cailin Macmillan flees her father’s castle and quickly learns that a woman traveling alone in Medieval Scotland is an easy target for ruthless English soldiers. When Highland patriot Connor Fraser comes to her aid, his steadfast dedication to king and country is challenged by his overwhelming desire to protect Cailin—even if he must marry her to do so.

Accused of murdering one of her attackers and determined to rely on her own resourcefulness, Cailin dresses as a lad, intent on seeking refuge at the camp of Robert the Bruce. Can she elude an enemy from her past—a vindictive English lord bent on her utter demise—or will she fall prey to his carnal intent and be executed for a crime she did not commit?

No halfway measures in this story; it practically jumps off the pages with action, heart-in-the-throat close calls, and love scenes that heat the blood and send it racing. Highland Legacy reaches out and grabs one’s attention and emotions and doesn’t let go until the very end.

Eighteen-year-old Cailin McMillan, feisty, intelligent, and tenacious, decides the outside world she knows little about has to be better than her father’s cruelty and his despicable plans for her. She finds the horrors and hardships she suffers along with the danger that nips at her heels often rival her father’s treatment. The tapestry of her life is dark indeed, until Connor Fraser, a Highlander warrior comes to her rescue. He brings a touch of light to her dark story—a light that grows to a glowing golden love, albeit, not without going through the fires of refinement. To her he is magnificent—one of God’s masterpieces.

Connor Fraser has pledged fealty to Robert the Bruce, King of Scotland. He knows death stalks him as he rides into battle after battle. Consequently, he wants no wife that could be his widow at any moment; nor does he want to love someone. The hurt of losing his parents and two brothers is still a raw, aching pain in his heart.

He's laird of the Fraser clan since Alasdair chose not to accept the responsibility when their oldest brother died. Big, crude, insensitive Alasdair is older than Connor, but leadership is not for him. He sees the world from a very different angle than many, but he never fails in his loyalty to Connor. Bryce, the younger brother, is far more civilized yet just as loyal and good in a fight as his brothers. These three are a force to be reckoned with.

Set in the early fourteenth century when England was determined to place Scotland under English rule, Highland Legacy bristles with hostilities, intrigues, and vicious inhumane treatment of people. During this era, English law allowed nobility to get away with murder and all kinds of horrific treatment especially to women. It curdles the blood to see the absolute lack of value placed on women during this time.

The antagonist, Lord Borden, borders on insanity in his vendetta against Cailin. He and Cailin’s father are the darkest threads in the tapestry of the heroine’s life.

But, while extreme cruelty stalked the land at one end of the continuum, at the other end, extreme love that knows no bounds is strong and true, a bright golden thread that eclipses the darkness. The breathtaking, earth-shattering love Connor and Cailin share is spellbinding. WOW!

B. J. Scott’s Highland Legacy is exciting, graphic, sometimes humorous, and always gives a sense of urgency. While not a long story, it is chocked full of compelling characters and has all the elements one expects to find in a historical set in the Highlands during this era. Ms. Scott’s writing style engages the senses and emotions without let up. Good reading!