Highland Heroes: The Pretender Mass Market Paperback – 1 Mar 2002
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
On the trek to Scotland, the carriage becomes stuck in mud. Douglas MacKinnon helps pull the carriage free. Elizabeth, learning she is to marry, concocts a plan to pretend that Douglas is her fiancé. However, a few drinks later and by morning her sister Isabella catches the duo in bed together. Though both insist nothing happened, Bella insures they marry. Alaric learns that Douglas is a noble seeking the return of his family lands taken because his father participated with the Jaocbites at Culloden. Alaric blackmails Douglas into remaining as Elizabeth's husband for two months. The couple falls in love, but what will happen to their relationship once Elizabeth learns the intricacies of the deal between her beloved and her father.
THE PRETENDER is an entertaining Scottish historical romance that provides a vigorous look at the too often written post Culloden English-Scottish relationship. The lead couple is a delight with their own agenda that love ravages. The story line is loaded with plots and counterplots that feel like an espionage tale, but instead provides a robust historical romance. Sub-genre fans will relish this novel while looking forward to Jaclyn Reding's tales starring Elizabeth's four younger siblings.
The story itself is a great adventure with an English duke's daughter and a Highlander. Lots of tension and spark between these two as they are thrown together, literally, and come to terms with it. The love story that comes from it is filled with fire and tenderness, too, in the vulnerability of the heroine, which she tried to hide -- and the hero's sensitivity.
I also recommend the second book in this series, THE ADVENTURER, which I just read and LOVED! Don't miss either of them.
My only complaint about the book (and why I didn't give it five stars) was that it ended VERY abruptly. It seemed as if the story "turned out" in the last few pages and things seemed to fall together much too easily, after so much conflict. It isn't that I had wanted the conflict to continue, of course, I just wish more time had been taken wrapping up the story neatly.
All in all, however, it's a fun book and I do look forward to the other books in this series as they come out.