Come on, y’all, and play with us on Top Off Tuesday! Hosted by On a Book Bender, Geeky Blogger’s Book Blog, and Smitten with Reading, Top Off Tuesday features some of the best topless covers out there (and some pretty darned hilarious ones, too).
With Outlander going strong (only four episodes left *sob* Why such a short season, Starz?), I’ve been all over hot Scotsmen lately. Sadly, there aren’t enough modern-day stories set in Scotland so I’ve been reading the historicals (which aren’t really my favorites. As much as I love Scots and Scotland, let’s face it. Life was brutal for the Scots. They didn’t have many wins back when. And I can’t get that out of my head when I read the histo-roms set back then. Sure, the couple gets an HEA but I know that in a few years, most of that now-happy clan will most likely wind up slaughtered on some battlefield. Darn you, history, for intruding on my pleasant fantasy! *shakes fist*)
Still, this cover and this book were a win for me. Yay for historically accurate plaids, though he’d probably have a shirt on because it’s pretty darned cold up in the Highlands no matter what time of year.The Arrow by Monica McCarty
Series: Highland Guard #9
Published by Random House Publishing Group on August 26, 2014
Genres: Historical, Romance, Scottish
As King Robert the Bruce of Scotland plots to retake his English occupied castles, he needs the stealth and skill of his elite soldiers, the Highland Guard. Fearless and indomitable, no men are more loyal to their king, or cherished by the women they love.
The talents of legendary marksman Gregor “Arrow” MacGregor are crucial now, as Bruce moves to reclaim his Scottish holdings. Gregor is considered the most handsome man in Scotland, and his fame as an archer is rivaled only by his reputation with the lasses as a heartbreaker. But when his infamous face is exposed during a covert mission, Gregor is forced to lay low. He returns home only to find a new battle waiting: a daring game of seduction involving his now very grown up and very desirable ward, Cate of Lochmaben.
A born fighter, Cate was clinging to life when Gregor rescued her after a vicious English raid on her village left her mother dead. But five years later, the once scrappy orphan Gregor took under his protection has become a woman. Brave, strong, and skilled in warfare, Cate is determined to lay claim to the warrior who refuses to be trapped. The heat in his eyes tells her she has his attention . . . and his desire. But will Gregor allow his heart to surrender before danger finds them, and the truth of Cate's identity is revealed?
As usual, I’m starting a series in the middle. (So many series — I just can’t help it!) But it’s a pretty darned good standalone. The Most Handsome Man in Scotland, aka MHMiS aka Gregor, rescues wee Cate after a brutal raid on her village and carts her off to his mama up in the Highlands, leaving her there as he gallivants about the countryside with his pals, the Phantoms, and Robert the Bruce, raiding and killing those blasted, encroaching English. Cate grows up wild and free and completely in love with Gregor.
A precision archer, Gregor loses some of his edge and is sent home for a wee vacation by Robert the Bruce. Cate is ecstatic and determined to prove to the man that he’s perfect for her and she’s perfect for him. Hilarity ensues. Hearts are broken, repaired, broken again and then, yay, HEA. I know I’m writing this in a flippant tone but, really, it was a highly enjoyable story. I really liked the banter, how gorgeous Gregor is chased by women who he really wants nothing to do with, how Cate tries to win his heart (when she really had it all along but the stubborn man couldn’t see it), and how the secret team of Robert the Bruce’s Phantoms work together. I’m going to have to check out some of the others in this series.
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