Tuesday, September 29, 2015

4 stars--The Stolen Mackenzie Bride (MacKenzies & McBrides #8) by Jennifer Ashley

highlanders, historical romance
Breathtakingly poignant. The Stolen Mackenzie Bride left me fighting back tears and wanting to fall down and have a massive sob. Beautiful, heartbreaking, passionate and utterly moving it gripped my heart and wouldn't let go.

If you've read this series this one is a bit of a throwback. All the way to Scotland 1745 and the life of the Mackenzie family ancestor, Malcolm, as he found love, fought for family, freedom and everything he held dear in the midst of an uprising between the Scottish and the English that pulled his family into the brutal battle between them.  It's a tumultuous time full of pain, loss and heartache but hope, love and determination shone through.

Mal and Mary were amazing characters. Full of grit and backbone and unfailing love. Their lives were full of danger and turmoil but they never let go of each other. They carried on, fought harder and survived time and time again. I loved them down to their toes and just wanted to curl around them and protect them from everything they were going through.

kilts, man candy, sexy, alpha male, scottish
This one had a very different feel and was much darker than the others I've read in the series. It did have funny moments as the two met and their lives became entwined. Little bits where I'd bark out a laugh or just couldn't help smiling over their antics or banter. The sexy bits were rather subdued as a whole but there were a couple scenes that were passionate and sigh worthy. But overall it was fairly dark. The uprising they were pulled into and the losses not just to them personally but to both countries as they battled gave me one of those 'oh God' moments. Especially when thinking about how it was based in real history. I just can't imagine. Whew. Anyways. It was powerful.

It was so interesting seeing a different generation of Mackenzie brothers. Seeing where the fire, rebellion, love of family, rakishness, fierceness came from and how it was passed down to the "current" generation of brothers that the series is typically about. Being able to go Ooo Ian totally got that trait from him!  It was just special. And I really hope Ashley will do more with exploring the lives of Malcolm's brothers and the Mackenzies of this earlier century.

Powerful and moving. The Stolen Mackenzie Bride was a bittersweet journey of family, determination and two souls finding love during a harrowing moment in time. It was beautiful and will stick with me for quite some time.

Do you have a favorite from Ashley?
Who is YOUR favorite Highlander?
Any good kilted man candies out there?

historical romance, highlanders, kilts, jennifer ashley, review
1745, Scotland: The youngest son of the scandalous Mackenzie family, Malcolm is considered too wild to tame…until he meets a woman who is too unattainable to resist.

Lady Mary Lennox is English, her father highly loyal to the king, and promised to another Englishman. But despite it being forbidden to speak to Malcolm, Lady Mary is fascinated by the Scotsman, and stolen moments together lead to a passion greater than she’d ever dreamed of finding.

When fighting breaks out between the Highlanders and the King's army, their plans to elope are thwarted, and it will take all of Malcolm’s daring as a Scottish warrior to survive the battle and steal a wife out from under the noses of the English.

Amazon | ARe | Book Depository | BAM | Goodreads


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