Tuesday, March 14, 2017

4 stars-- No Other Highlander (The McKennas, #2) by Adrienne Basso

It's been a while since I read Basso and goodness I missed her writing! Rich and compelling. There's an almost magical quality to Basso's writing that pulls you in and makes you feel like you're right there with the characters.

So. No Other Highlander. Basically Malcolm has been accused by another clan of sullying one of their lasses and being her baby daddy. And he's all...um, no. Which leads to a huge gathering of clans to make sure justice is found. And where he finds the most unlikely of allies...the prickly Joan who belongs to the mediating clan and is dead set on never marrying again but manages to walk herself right into one with the now cleared coulda been a baby-daddy highlander.
"Why do ye insist on a traditional marriage? Ye should feel relieved that ye'll have the chance to be rid of me. I'm prickly, selfish, strong willed, opinionated, and annoying."

His lips curved into a faint grin. "No one's perfect."

Joan threw up her hands in frustration.
I loved Malcolm. I mean. This is a hero I'd love to steal right out from under his heroine. He's fierce but kind. Has a soft spot for kids. Is patient and a little naughty. Totally sexy and manly and just the best of men.

And Lady Joan. She's fierce in her own way. Did whatever it took to have an abusive marriage ended. Kept her head up even when those around her treat her with disdain and was anything but a quitter.

So this really was a fun read. The drama surrounding proving him innocent of knocking off a lass and abandoning her (then trying to find the real baby daddy), an accidental marriage, and the coming together of an insta-family since both Malcolm and Joan have children from previous marriages. I enjoyed watching Malcolm and Joan try to find a way to their new life together. Wooing and learning to trust, a few moments of danger thrown in.

My only issue came with Joan and how she reacted to Malcolm's young and rambunctious daughter. A couple times it felt way out of character for her and like she was overreacting. I wish more had been done with Malcolm and Joan talking about how they'd raise their kids instead of her just doing what she wanted and expecting him to fall in line. It wasn't a huge issue in the overall book but did niggle a bit for me.

Overall, though, No Other Highlander was full of highlander goodness. A fierce warrior, a strong heroine, and a fiery romance that'll leave you warm and tingly.

Scottish Highlands, 1334: The McKenna clan flourishes under a family of warriors, fierce and righteous, faithful to their own until the last. But to produce an heir, the widowed eldest son must risk his heart again . . .

Lady Joan Armstrong Fraser was once the indulged and pampered daughter of a laird. But marriage to a brute changed her. When he sets her aside, she has only her wits and her beauty to protect herself and her child from the chaos of her former home. She will have to find another husband—a man whose strength is more than a weapon against the weak. A man she can trust . . . if such a man even breathes.

Sir Malcolm McKenna has known Lady Joan since her childhood, a spoiled princess as dangerous as she is lovely. But when she steps forward to protect him against a false accusation, he discovers a character stronger than he guessed—and an attraction he yearns to explore . . .

Amazon | Goodreads | Basso on HCBS
*covers link to Amazon

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