Hope you are all having a great day!! Today I'm bringing you a review of a highlander romance. I hope you aren't too sick of them yet *blush* I will try and review some other romances soon for everyone just to mix things up.
Summary from Goodreads
Mass Market Paperback, 323 pages
Published September 27th 2011
by Ballantine Books
An outcast from her own clan, Keeley McDonald was betrayed by those she loved and trusted. When the wounded warrior falls from his horse, she is drawn to his strong, lean body. The wicked glint in his green eyes ignites a passion that will follow them back to Alaric’s keep, where their forbidden love draws them deeper into the pleasures of the flesh. But as conspiracy and danger circle closer, Alaric must make an impossible choice: Will he betray his blood ties for the woman he loves?
So after reading the first book in the McCabe trilogy, I was really excited to read the second one. This novel features the middle brother, Alaric as our hero. The first novel had set him to marry Rionna McDonald, a neighbouring clan that the McCabes were looking to ally themselves with in their struggles against Cameron who is still after Mairin. Alaric had been set up as willing to wed Rionna, but wanting what Ewan had found with Mairin, true love.
The novel opens up with Alaric setting out to the McDonald lands to fulfill this marriage. However, Alaric and his men are attacked and Alaric is gravely injuried and ends up being tended by an outcast McDonald woman named Keeley on the outskirts of McDonald land. In his feverish state, Alaric sees Keeley as an angel. His brothers eventually find him still ill at Keeley's and take both Alaric and Keeley back to McCabe lands, where Keeley is charged with saving Alaric and safely delivering Mairin's baby. Once he's fully recovered, Alaric discovers that all he could do is think about Keeley and Keeley is equally attracted to him.
While I enjoyed this novel, and thought Keeley was a stubborn, fiesty character worthy of an arrogrant McCabe male (so she could put him in his place) I have to say, I wasn't devastated by this read. Alaric is techinally engaged to another woman, and although he and Keeley try and deny their feelings for each other, they can't and they end up decideding that stealing whatever passionate nights they can together is the way to go since it's impossible that Alaric not marry Rionna. That sat badly with me. I felt like Alaric should fight harder for Keeley. After all, he loved her with every fibre of his being. I respected his desision to honour his prior agreement, and to do his duty to his clan and family, but I thought that maybe there should have been some moment where he seriously considering not marrying Rionna in order to be with Keeley, but that never happens. Instead, he's continually remiding himself that he can't ever really be with Keeley the way he wants to. And that just bugged me. It wasn't until the very end, when he handfasted with Keeley in her dying moment, that I finally was won over by Alaric. However, it was too little to late. Not that there isn't a HEA, Alaric finally does step up and refuse to marry Rionna so that he can remain a man of honour, and also to with Keeley, but still...too little to late for me.
I must say however, that this novel delivers in the steam factor. I don't know if Maya Banks just decided to kick it up a notch in this second book, or if it was because the couple was supposedly on limited time that made the bedroom scenes so passionate and hot, but in this area, the novel did not disappoint. I'm also eager to read Caelaen's story now. I was actually more interested in him in this read than Alaric, because Caelaen obviously has some serious issues with women, and yet it's clear that he's a sensitive, caring man. I can't wait to see how his marriage to Rionna plays out...
3.5 glittering stars