Sun
Jun 18 2017 11:00am

If You Like Julie Garwood, Try Mary Wine’s Highland Hellion

Highland Hellion by Mary Wine

Did you cut your historical romance teeth on Julie Garwood’s memorable Scottish historicals? If so, you’ll relish the tempestuous and unusual heroine of Mary Wine’s Highland Hellion. Katherine Carew is unforgettable—“Illegitimate daughter of an English earl… Abducted to Scotland at age 14… No family, no reputation… No rules.” Since her abduction she has been allowed to train with the young men of her adopted clan. Wearing the plaid, not dresses, Katherine is a tomboy, a trained fighter, a hellion in the Highlands.

Recently Marcus, the head of her clan, decreed Katherine would have to stop riding out and raiding with his warriors. She rails against her fate. No one is going to curb her wings.

The night beckoned to her with warm air and enough clouds to keep the moonlight low. It was just a ride. A few hours to restore her spirit before she had to resume the role Fate had decided was hers.

Hellion?

Perhaps.

Katherine is unworried about tempting fate, even though just days earlier she was almost captured by the men of another clan when she was adventuring at night. Why would she take that risk? Is there a man involved?  Oh yes. And she knows his name and his status: he’s “the heir to an honorable Highland laird.”

Rolfe McTavish. Out in the darkness, he’d been a brute to be sure. Not that she doubted he was any less fearsome by the light of day, but the night hours cast things in a way that made them seem more intense. That had to be the reason why she would have sworn she still felt his fingers on her skin. He’d touched her for a mere moment. Moon madness was the explanation for why it lingered in her thoughts.

She’d heard his name many times. He’d held Helen for ransom when Marcus had first brought Katherine to the Highlands. She had been barely fourteen at the time, and grateful to Marcus for not wedding her as the Earl of Morton had demanded [Helen and Marcus’s story is Highland Vixen (Highland Weddings #2)]. Katherine had been too young, and Marcus had been outraged. He had stolen her away into the Highlands to ensure she’d have time to grow up.

She was doubly grateful tonight because Marcus had trained her. Rolfe McTavish would have been sending another ransom note if she hadn’t known how to escape. But she had, and she fell asleep with that truth warming her.

Who should Katherine run into again? It’s as if all the clans maraud for sport and/or nefarious deeds at night. She overhears Rolfe talking about her tits (he certainly wasn’t fooled by her attire when he encountered her) but as annoyed and flustered as she might be, she can’t let him and his men be captured by the “vengeful Gordons,” also out that moonlit night. Rolfe and his men escape but Katherine is not as lucky. Rolfe can’t allow Kat to suffer the consequences of his light-hearted raid: he knows he owes her his freedom. Hence a rescue of a rather ungrateful captive.

Katherine felt her eyes narrow. Christ! Fate was having a merry time with her, it would seem! Why now, of all times, did she suddenly develop an awareness of men?

Why will Rolfe and his men not let Katherine return home? They even speak of trussing her up! Katherine is certain that their leader is behind their inexplicable behavior. Does Rolfe want to ransom her as he did Marcus’s now-wife Helen so many years ago?

Rolfe was watching her, a glitter in his eyes that promised her an argument. Or something else that she wasn’t all too certain of. She decided she didn’t want to know because her belly was twisting as though she was anticipating something.

Clearly the rescue has come with consequences. Rolfe impresses upon Katherine that her willfulness, wandering about at night, led to a dangerous situation. If he and his men had not rescued her from the Gordons, Marcus and his clan would have had to. Rolfe doesn’t mince words.

He started for the door but stopped before crossing the threshold. “If ye can nae think of the men who would fight to avenge ye, than ye are still a child, Katherine.” He set her a hard look before he let his men close the chamber door.

He was right.

She detested the facts and the harsher side of Fate for not making her see the truth in some easier fashion. But life had never taught her any lessons the easy way. Today was no exception.

For whatever reason, Rolfe is determined to keep her in tow rather than let her return home. Unsurprisingly, Katherine doesn’t take this edict lying down. Rolfe’s father is also less than pleased—he doesn’t want his son to lose his heart to an illegitimate, undowered girl. But possibly Fate has something to say about that because Rolfe and Katherine are powerfully attracted to each other.

She knew he was going to kiss her before he angled his head and fitted his mouth against hers. She moaned softly, unable to remain silent as sensation went flowing through her like a dam had ruptured. She’d never realized what it held back, and now it swept her with its power and rolling her completely within its current. The kiss was hard, just like his body. He didn’t allow her to keep her mouth closed, but pressed her lips open with the motion of his own as he moved his mouth over hers. It was overwhelming, like a clap of thunder directly overhead.

Rolfe and Katherine are bold, brave, and when necessary, devious. They face many obstacles in their journey to happiness but Rolfe is in love with a woman who leads him a merry dance and will stand shoulder to shoulder beside him, no matter what life sends their way.

***

Learn more about or order a copy of Highland Hellion by Mary Wine, available now:

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H&H Editor Picks:

First Look: Amanda Scott’s The Reluctant Highlander

It’s Always Darkest Before the Dawn: Kerrigan Byrne’s The Highlander

June 2017 Romance New Releases

 

 

 

 

 


Janet Webb aka @JanetETennessee moved from the San Francisco Bay to eastern Tennessee. Baseball is my passion: I follow the Chattanooga Lookouts and the Nashville Sounds (farm team of my beloved Oakland Athletics). Social media devotee. Stories on royals and politics catch my eye. Ottawa born. Grew up on Georgette Heyer and Helen MacInnes. I also review at Criminal Element.

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