Highland Scoundrel by Monica McCarty

The Campbell Trilogy, Book 3

Ballantine Books

Historical

ISBN: 978-0345503404

Reviewed by Shayna

   

 

It was love at first sight when Duncan Campbell spotted Jeannie Grant at Stirling Castle.  But fate tears the young lovers apart when Duncan is framed and convicted of treason.  Escaping to the continent to avoid the hangman’s noose, Duncan leaves everything he’s known behind, including the woman whom he loved and was betrayed by.  Now, Duncan has returned to clear his name and to do that he needs Jeannie’s help.  What he finds instead is himself at the wrong end of a pistol.

Jeannie can’t believe the man she shot is the same man who abandoned her ten years ago.  Duncan has returned to Scotland and is demanding her help, but though she wants to aid him, Jeannie has secrets of her own she has to protect.  Yet, Jeannie finds she can’t allow the man she once loved to be put to death.

As Duncan and Jeannie search for the truth, each finds that the lust – and love – they once felt for each other has never died.  But with time running out and Duncan’s enemies closing in on the pair, the lovers must decide if they can learn to trust one another again and bare all their secrets for a chance at a love that has stood the test of time.

Deception, warfare, and intrigue provide the perfect backdrop for this stunning romance from Monica McCarty.  Highland Scoundrel is everything a historical romance should be with its engaging blend of fact and fiction combined with characters who will grab your heart and a plot that will keep you on the edge of your seat.

What I love about Highland Scoundrel, indeed about all of Ms. McCarty’s books, is that each character feels real.  From Jeannie and Duncan down to the tale’s villain, no one is written in black and white terms and, whether or not I agreed with each character’s view on any given point, I do understand their perspective.  I applaud Ms. McCarty’s ability to do this so seamlessly; I didn’t even notice it until the book had ended.  Yet that’s exactly what draws me to Ms. McCarty’s work – the three-dimensionality of her characters.  Even Duncan and Jeannie are not infallible and it’s the mistakes they make as much as their good points which made me unable to put Highland Scoundrel down.  I read the book in one sitting, incapable of stopping because the characters were so likeable and I was invested not only in their romance, but the book as a whole (the details of which I’ll forgo going into so as to not give any spoilers).

Highland Scoundrel is the third book in Ms. McCarty’s irresistible Campbell trilogy.  While the book does stand on its own, fans of the first two books will delight in seeing familiar characters, including the heroes and heroines of Highland Warrior and Highland Outlaw.  A wonderful conclusion to a perfect trilogy, Highland Scoundrel is not to be missed!

     

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