For it wasn’t what a man put into his mouth that polluted his heart, it’s what came out of it.
The Almighty warns seven things are an abomination: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that make haste to run to evil, a false witness who breathes out lies, and one who sows discord among brothers.
Men are the lowest creatures when it comes to affairs of the heart. It’s a wonder to me that the gods wasted their time forming brains in their skulls, for everything is driven by the wee head between their legs.
(Spoken by Errol) A man shouldn’t be judged by his conquests. (His sire replies) Nor should he dip his wick in places it doesna belong.
Title: Her Highland Rogue Wild Highland Guardian Novel, book 1
Author: Violetta Rand
Genre: Historical Romance, Scottish
Story Setting: Kintail, Scotland 1498; 1515
Published by: Loveswept
Published Date: June 21, 2016
Sold by: Random House LLC
About the Story:
In a breathtaking short novel that’s perfect for readers of Maya Banks and Monica McCarty, Violetta Rand introduces a wild clan of Scottish warriors who fight for honor—and live for passion.
Errol MacRae’s days of gallivanting across the Highlands are nearing an end. His father’s health has taken a turn for the worse, and rumors are swirling that the crown intends to transfer ancient lands into the hands of the MacKenzies, the clan the MacRaes are sworn to defend. Errol expects to lead his men into battle soon. So he isn’t pleased when his father instead sends him to retrieve a beautiful flame-haired lass who has fled into the mountains.
Orphaned as a young girl, Aileana vividly remembers how the MacRaes rescued her and welcomed her into their clan. For ten years, she has served them loyally—until the night she’s nearly despoiled by one of the laird’s captains. Aileana risks her life and her reputation to seek refuge in the snowcapped peaks of the Five Sisters, the one place that has always felt like home. But after the strong-armed, strong-willed Errol tracks her down in a blizzard, she finds herself tempted to risk something even more dangerous: her heart.
My Thoughts: The prologue introduces us to the young women, Sgurr, hiding in a cave, soon to give birth, above Eigg, Rum and Skye. A woman in hiding, who had fallen in love with two men of different clans, was having a child. She knew not which man was the father. What did she want for her child? To grow up free of violence and hatred and to know that each man’s value should be through his actions.
The story then picks up some 17 years later. The MacRae clan is where hero and heroine live. Errol is a man who’s learned much from his sire. Laird MacRae runs a clan where all are valued.
Every member of this household is equally valued. Whether you or a kitchen maid, it matters not to me. A lesson I learned too late in life. But I’ll be damned if yer going to made the same mistakes. Men of power are responsible for their people—and the future laird will demonstrate compassion whenever he can.
Errol rather not chase after Aileana. A kitchen maid as bonny as she shouldn’t be surprised to have her arse fondled. Rather than fight back she runs. He much rather prepare his men for a MacDonald invasion. However, he does his father’s bidding.
Aileana was running, running from the advances of Broc, a favored captain of the guard. She didn’t like him at all. She just knew she had to run. She ran to a cave in the hills on one of the Five Sisters. Someplace warm and welcoming, a place which holds her destiny.
Errol eventually finds the cave where Aileana is staying. From this point in the story he no longer sees her as a kitchen maid, but a spirited, beautiful woman who is kind and gentle. And some time between the keep and the cave Aileana has grown a backbone.
Aileana finds peace and acceptance only to have it snatched away by evil doers. Errol finds happiness in love only to lose it again, this time for good.
The story gains speed with emotions running high, tension builds. The secondary characters play an important role as well as provide a subplot, I’m sure, to be continued in the rest of the series.
I enjoyed Ms. Rand’s writing style, with her turn of phrasing, my first read of her work. Her characters are so clearly described and fully fleshed the reader deeply cares what happens to them. The highlands are a passionate setting in their own right, rugged lands, hostile weather and enemies where and where you don’t expect. The plot is intriguing. A possible theme? We learn our behavior, and are the people we are, from our past experiences. I very much look forward to reading more of this series.
Raised in Corpus Christi, Texas, Violetta Rand spent her childhood reading, writing, and playing soccer.
After meeting her husband in New England, they moved to Alaska where she studied environmental science. Violetta then spent nearly a decade working as an environmental scientist, specializing in soil and water contamination and environmental assessments.
Violetta still lives in Anchorage, Alaska and spends her days writing evocative contemporary and historical romance. When she’s not reading, writing, or editing, she enjoys time with her husband, pets, and friends.
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