Tall, Dark and Kilted: Notting Hill Meets Monarch of the Glen Paperback – 16 Oct 2012
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About the Author
After teaching her 1000th pupil and working as a deputy headteacher in a large primary school, Lizzie decided it was time to leave the chalk face and pursue her first love: writing. She joined the Romantic Novelists’ Association’s New Writers Scheme, honed her craft and wrote Tall, Dark and Kilted. She’s had enormous fun researching men in kilts, falling in love with brooding hero Ruairi Urquhart, and rooting for heroine Fliss Bagshawe - and hopes you will, too. Born in Scotland, Lizzie has always wanted to write a romantic novel set in the Highlands and Islands and with Tall, Dark and Kilted she has done just that. She has a well developed sense of humour and hopes this comes across in her novel. Although much of her time is taken up publicising Tall, Dark and Kilted she has completed her second novel: Boot Camp Bride and has embarked upon a third. Boot Camp Bride has an element of intrigue and suspense and is set in the atmospheric Norfolk marshes where Lizzie has spent much of her time. Lizzie is a founding member of an indie publishing group: The New Romantics 4. Her fellow New Romantics are June Kearns, Mags Cullingford and Adrienne Vaughan. The New Romantics 4’s watch cry is: all for one and one for all. All four New Romantics will be e-publishing their second novels in November 2013 and have organised 'red carpet events' where they will share their experiences as writers and talk about their novels to readers. Follow The New Romantics 4 on Twitter - @newromantics4
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Fliss Bagshawe, determined and independent, has worked hard and struggled to support herself since her parents died. A qualified holistic therapist, she works at a salon in Pimlico, doing a little moonlighting in the evenings to supplement her income. When Fliss is offered the chance to manage a salon on an estate in the Highlands by the self-centred and rebellious, Isla Urquhart and her sister, Cat, she is both excited and apprehensive. Having lost her job, without references, ostensibly through her association with the Urquhart sisters, Fliss feels she has nothing to lose by accepting.
Fliss’ romantic notion of life in the Highlands suffers a blow when she meets Ruairi, the gorgeous Laird of Kinlock Mara, half-brother to Isla and Cat. Ruairi considers the therapy centre another of his stepmother’s half baked schemes, and believes Fliss is an opportunist and there under false pretences.
An entertaining and fun contemporary romance with engaging characters, a stunning location and a broodingly sexy hero – the ‘tall, dark and kilted’ of the title. Fliss’ determination to prove Ruairi wrong about her motives and show him she has the capability to make a success of the therapy centre results in some spirited and humorous conversations and clashes, with hints of an attraction they both refuse to accept or admit to.
All the characters are well-rounded and believable. Fliss, feisty and likeable and Ruairi, weighed down by the responsibility of the estate and the antics of his family, are both strong main protagonists. The secondary characters are also well developed, so much so that I could cheerfully have swung for Isla. I love the evocatively described scenery and the way traditions and beliefs are woven into the story.
Lizzie Lamb has written a real corker in Tall, Dark and Kilted. All the ingredients for a great book are here; exhilarating plot, wonderful characters, an abundance of humour, all set against the beautiful backdrop of gloriously scenic Scotland. It is a book you can’t put down in a hurry because it is so absorbing and you just have to find out how things turn out for the heroine, feisty Fliss Bagshawe and the difficult, arrogant Laird, Ruairi, who clash spectacularly throughout the novel. It is frequently hilarious with great dialogue, particularly between Fliss and Ruairi. The ‘will they, won’t they?’ debate runs through the book and the reader is kept guessing right until the very end. A thoroughly entertaining read to warm your heart and is to be highly recommended, particular for lovers of romance.
The scene-setting with descriptive passages of the rugged Scottish landscape – in all weathers – gives a great sense of place and atmosphere.
If you like a good rom-com, well told, you’ll enjoy this.
Who could predict that being arrested in London would lead Fliss to meet the man of her dreams? For Ruairi his step-sisters' latest friend, Fliss, is just another problem to deal with and get rid off as if he didn't have enough trouble on his hands, such as saving his inheritance, without taking on any more. But for both, things don't go as expected and certainly not as planned.
Change is said to fuel progress and Fliss's arrival at Kinlock Mara is a catalyst no one predicted - or did they? It is also said that change is not welcomed by those who let tradition rule - and Ruairi is all for tradition.
The scene setting is amazing and had me longing to go back home. The detail and depth of all the characters takes Tall Dark and Kilted beyond the `also-ran to' a book this reviewer considers a keeper. Add the powerful emotions, the inter-family conflicts and the individual dreams, beliefs and cynicism, plus the humour, between them all, and it makes Tall Dark and Kilted a powerful story that carries the romance between Ruairi and Fliss from start to finish.
For this reviewer, Tall Dark and Kilted is a keeper.
...and if you like this one, Lizzie's written more! I read them end-to-end - and I'm now going round a second time - yes they are that good.