Title: DECEPTION OF A HIGHLANDER
Series: Highlander #1
Author: Madeline Martin
Format: Kindle, 292 Pages
Published: Diversion Books (July 5, 2015)
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N
Source: Contest Win
Rating: 4 out of 5 Wine Glasses
Scottish Romance doesn’t get much steamier—or more dangerous—than a spy hunting her quarry, and losing her heart to him instead.
To pay a seemingly impossible debt, Mariel Brandon has become a spy for Aaron, one of England’s deadliest minds. Aaron’s latest mission for the sharp-witted and daring Mariel is to find two people in a heavily fortified castle on the Isle of Skye, a castle headed by the clan MacDonald and the powerful Kieran. Mariel is to seduce Kieran and get him to take her to Skye. If she succeeds, Aaron promises to let Mariel’s young brother go, and to free both of them from their debt. If she fails, her brother will die.
What she doesn’t count on is craving Kieran MacDonald almost immediately upon meeting him. Now Mariel must keep a secret from Kieran—one that could get them both killed—as she tries to form a plan that will save her brother, get her out from under Aaron’s thumb once and for all, and keep her in Kieran’s strong arms forever.
"Damn it, Mariel," Kieran growled and spun her around to face him once more. "Ye belong to me."
Her heart skipped a beat. He wanted her. Mariel wrenched her arm from his hold but did not back down from the heat of his stare. "Then be a man and take what's yours."
DECEPTION OF A HIGHLANDER by Madeline Martin is a steamy Scottish romance that kept me up until the wee hours of the morn finishing it. It is the first book that I've ever read by this author but it won't be the last as I already have the next book in this series on my reader. This is the intriguing story of Laird Kieran MacDonald and a coerced spy, Mariel Brandon.
Kieran and Mariel were both strong-willed, engaging characters. Mariel's life story was a sad one. She has been trained as an assassin and as a spy. Her beloved younger brother, the only family member she had left, was being held by a powerful English blackguard. To obtain his freedom, Mariel was being strong-armed to utilize her wiles to seduce and betray Kieran, a Scottish barbarian and head of his clan. She needs to sleep with him so he will open up to her. There's one huge problem; she's fallen in love with the laird and his people so now she must decide between Kieran and his clan or her brother's life. Either way, she loses.
Kieran is distrustful of the English for good reason. So, when a comely English lass urgently asks to be allowed to join his travel party, her reason doesn't ring true. But, he's also a chivalrous Scot and she is purportedly a lady in need of his assistance. He agrees to provide transport even though he knows that she harbors secrets. Notwithstanding that she is not who she purports to be, will his heart succumb to her continuous assault?
Following please find a few of my favorite quotes from this tale:
She was in love with the very man she had to kill.
Kieran unfolded the letter and scanned the scrawled message....
'Beware an English assassin.'
He knew exactly what this meant.
"Did I catch ye looking at me?" He knelt beside her and covered her with the plaid...
"I couldn't help myself," she mumbled.
He gave a low chuckle and slid in beside her. His naked arm pulled her close so her head rested on his solid chest.
"Good answer." The smile was evident in his silky voice.
This was a beautifully woven story that was emotionally compelling and mysterious. It kept me riveted from the first page through to the last. I would recommend it to anyone who enjoys spicy, action-packed historical romances featuring sexy Scottish heroes.
Suggested Reading Order:
DECEPTION OF A HIGHLANDER (Book #1)
POSSESSION OF A HIGHLANDER (Book #2)
ENCHANTMENT OF A HIGHLANDER (Book #3)