on July 9, 2018
Purchase: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo
Georgina Townsend has never behaved like a "proper" lady. Her family accuses her of being impulsive, sometimes to the point of recklessness. And they must be right. Because when a band of Highland outlaws steals Georgina's late mother's music box, instead of letting the proper authorities take care of the matter, she disguises herself as a Highland lass and joins the group of outlaws to find the stolen item. She certainly doesn't plan on falling for their charming leader…
Malcolm Stewart has never met a more bold and captivating woman than the mysterious lass who suddenly shows up to join his small band of outlaws. But while she fits in easily, she's more distracting than he expected. When he returned from the war to find his life destroyed, Mal decided to get revenge on the Highland landlords, whom he blames for the death of his family. Falling in love isn't part of that plan—especially not with the sister of one of the very landlords he's sworn to fight against.
Each book in the Townsends series is STANDALONE:* Enchanting the Earl* The Rogue's Conquest* A Scot's Surrender* Claiming the Highlander's Heart
~~Reviewed by Bonnie~~
Georgina Townsend lives at Llynmore Castle, the home of her brother, Theo and his family. She arrives home to find that they’ve been robbed, and one of the items stolen was her music box, the only keepsake she has left of her mother. Apparently, Georgina has many connections because she’s able to find out who the thieves are, and where to find them. She concocts a story to explain her absence and sets off to infiltrate the gang of thieves and to retrieve her stolen treasure.
Malcolm Stewart went off to war, only to return to find he lost everything, including his family. In order to enact his revenge, and quite frankly, just to survive, he became the leader of a band of robbers who steal only from the wealthy. When they are approached by a mysterious lady who wants to join their group, they put her to the test, then readily accept her when she passes.
Surprisingly, Georgina fits right in with the group, and she and Malcolm grow especially close. She even nurses him through a severe injury, and he makes a gift to her of her very own music box. When the time comes that Georgina knows she has to return home, or her brother will realize her cover story was a sham, she sneaks away, taking a piece of Malcolm’s heart with her. Though he initially has no intention of making any attempt to find Georgina, he can’t resist tracking her down.
Ironically, Malcolm’s arrival in Georgina’s sphere coincides with the planned arrival date of the new school teacher, who seemingly has disappeared. Malcolm impersonates the school teacher while playing a bit of cat and mouse with Georgina, while he tries to ferret out the truth of what her game was. Though very wary of each other, the attraction Malcolm and Georgina feel only grows stronger.
Many of the scenarios in this story were kind of far-fetched, so I just had to suspend disbelief, and go along for the ride. It’s unlikely a proper lady would have enough connections to identify and locate a band of robbers and have the skills to join their group. Even more unlikely that they would welcome a stranger, especially a woman, into their gang without hesitation. Then you have to consider a how a lady could simply disappear from her family for an extended period without questions. In spite of these conundrums, I found that I was totally enjoying the story.
I loved seeing Malcolm fumble his way into being a successful teacher, and coming to realize that he may have a future that doesn’t have to include being a criminal. When we learn that Georgina has a couple of physical issues, one that would actually preclude what is usually considered a “normal” sex life, Malcolm’s reaction is totally swoon-worthy. This couple can definitely generate steam! CLAIMING THE HIGHLANDER’S HEART is an unusual and passionate read that pushes the boundaries of believability as far as the situations go, but definitely touches all the right emotional places.