Title: When a Scot Ties the Knot
Series: Castles Ever After #3
Author: Tessa Dare
Format: ebook, 384 pages
Published : August 25th 2015 by Avon
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N
Rating: 4.5 out of 5 Wine Glasses
On the cusp of her first London season, Miss Madeline Gracechurch was shyly pretty and talented with a drawing pencil, but hopelessly awkward with gentlemen. She was certain to be a dismal failure on the London marriage mart. So Maddie did what generations of shy, awkward young ladies have done: she invented a sweetheart.
A Scottish sweetheart. One who was handsome and honorable and devoted to her, but conveniently never around. Maddie poured her heart into writing the imaginary Captain MacKenzie letter after letter … and by pretending to be devastated when he was (not really) killed in battle, she managed to avoid the pressures of London society entirely.
Until years later, when this kilted Highland lover of her imaginings shows up in the flesh. The real Captain Logan MacKenzie arrives on her doorstep—handsome as anything, but not entirely honorable. He’s wounded, jaded, in possession of her letters… and ready to make good on every promise Maddie never expected to keep.
"What I'm saying isna romantic. It's raw, primal, and entirely crude." He lowered his voice to a growl. "You, Madeline Elise Gracechurch have been driving me slowly mad with lust. For years."
WHEN A SCOT TIES THE KNOT by Tessa Dare is a lovely, sensual, original Highland romance. The gorgeous cover drew me in right away with its depiction of the couple with the castle in the background. WHEN A SCOT TIES THE KNOT is actually the third book in the author's Castles Ever After series. However, I can attest that it works very well as a standalone as it is the first book I've ever read by Tessa Dare and I enjoyed it very much!
WHEN A SCOT TIES THE KNOT is the story of Englishwoman Miss Madeline Gracechurch and Scottish Captain Logan MacKenzie.
To avoid her London season, painfully-shy Madeline concocts a convoluted lie about having met and becoming engaged to a dashing Highlander who just happens to be a captain serving in the war while she was on a seaside vacation at Brighton, England. Madeline's scheme serves its purpose as her parents don't force her to undergo her season. Fueled by her success, she continues her affair with this captain via a barrage of letters in which she pours out all her hopes, dreams and problems as a young lady would to her diary. After her fictional fiancé has served his purpose, Madeline kills him off and is done with him - or so she believes until one day she meets the real kilted Capital Logan MacKenzie. He has her letters, knows her intimately through them and he's come to claim her as his bride. Now what is she to do?
I really liked both the heroine and the hero. The couple's bantering was delicious, sexy and oftentimes humorous. Madeline was talented, smart, creative, nerdy and pretty but awkward in social situations and she suffers from panic attacks. Even so, she was a strong character, not one to be cowed. She honestly never thought that the letters she posted to her fake Captain would be delivered to a real man and that those letters would become both his whipping pole and his lifeline as the war continued. I would be remiss if I did not mention Madeline's quirky pets, especially her lobsters.
Because of this book, I absolutely had to research the mating ritual of lobsters and their preferred sexual position. LOL! You need to pick up this book to find out why!
Logan has a dream to fulfill - not for him, but for his men - but he needs Madeline to do it. I couldn't help but admire Logan's strength, selflessness, loyalty and fortitude AND he was a bookworm! Logan's life story was heartbreaking. Then... he suffered mightily through the war years due to Madeline's letters. Now that the war is over, Logan will go to any lengths to ensure that the men who were under his command are taken care of.
His voice lowered to an intense whisper. "I led those men into battle. When they were weary and chilled and sick with fear, I pushed them on. I promised they'd see the day when they'd come home to their wives, their sweethearts, their bairns, their lands. Instead, they came home to nothing."
If he needs to use those letters as leverage to force Madeline to marry him to give his men the safe, stable environment they require, so be it.
Following please find a few more of my favorite quotes from this delightful Scottish romance:
She laid a row of cushions down the center of the bed, carefully dividing it into two sides....
"I dinna know how this strategy escaped Napoleon's notice. If only he'd erect a barricade of feathers and fabric, we Highlanders wouldna have known how to get over it."
"There's more than one way to share pleasure."
She was quiet for a long moment. "How many ways?"
He rolled onto his side to face her, skimming a single finger from her breastbone to her belly. Here's an idea. I'll demonstrate them, and you keep count."
"Silly me. I dreamed big."
He gave her a sly grin. "And you got it."
Supporting characters were wonderful from Madeline's Aunt Thea - she was a hoot! - to Logan's motley crew of misfits who will tug at your heartstrings. Once I started this book, I read it straight through until I'd finished. I laughed a lot along the way and needed a fan for some titillatingly delicious scenes. It has definitely whet my appetite to read more books by this author. I highly recommend WHEN A SCOT TIES THE KNOT to anyone who enjoys swoon-worthy romances featuring strong women and hot, kilted, gloriously masculine men!
Suggested reading order: