So the concept is not entirely original. One, Angus "The Lion" MacDonald comes back to recapture his home. Lady Gwendolen’s father was the laird before he died and her brother is missing. So she takes up a sword to fight to protect her home. She does not wind as Angus’ tribe is more equipped and better armed. As can be expected there are divided loyalties as Angus claims Gwendolen as his bride in order to show that he is now the laird and that their tribe must now surrender to him. So at first the story seemed like most highlander stories I read. But I really enjoyed how well MacLean developed her characters and she really made Angus and Gwendolen suffer for their happily ever after.
I really loved Gwen at the start of the story but as soon as she marries Angus she turns into a love -struck-teenager. I understood that she was in love with him but her conversion was so quick it made me a little annoyed. I appreciated everything Angus went through. He lost his family and he didn’t trust anyone because of all the pain he endured. So I understood that he would have difficulty trust. Even Gwendolen. My biggest issue with Angus is that yes, he was wounded, and yes, he did have a lot of responsibility. However, he had no trouble believing Rowena’s prophecy that Gwendolen would betray him. Angus was so infuriating! For a strong warrior and leader he definitely lacked judgment when he most needed it. In the face of all these “disloyalties” Gwendolen never stopped believing in Angus and although it is sweet and honorable I wish the old Gwendolen, the one that grabbed the sword ready to fight would have appeared again. Angus did not prove his loyalty to Gwendolen until the very end and really until she exhausted every single possible alley and all that she had to offer was given.
Historically I really liked the way the author described the constant threats that threated the clans, the numerous treasons that occurred and the continuous tension with England. The secondary characters were also entertaining and fantastic. Gwendolen’s mother was full of surprises and the last couple of chapters I was anticipating what would happen next. If the character had more gusto I would have given this five stars because this story was very well written. The narrator, Antony Ferguson, was also very good. He has the perfect voice for a strong highlander.
**Audiobook provided by Tantor**
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