*ARC provided via Netgalley in exchange of an honest review*
“We may be under yer law, but we are our own people.
The English can take our lands and our homes, but they can never take our heritage.”
Author: Sharon Cullen
Release Date: June 28, 2016
Genre: Historical Romance
Series: Highland Pride, #2
Sequel to: Sutherland’s Secret
Colin MacLean has always felt like a black sheep—especially after his brothers are slain before his eyes in the Battle of Culloden. A smuggler by trade, Colin makes for an embarrassing chieftain. He can’t even save his friends from their British pursuers without getting himself captured. But before he is martyred by the hangman’s noose, Colin escapes with his cellmate, a brave lad he’s come to admire. It’s only in the depths of the Highlands that Colin discovers the lad is a lass—and a bonnie one at that.
Raised by her older brothers, Maggie Sinclair can drink a pint in no time flat and wield a dagger with the best of ’em. Still, men have always excluded her and women have always shunned her. Colin makes her feel different. His wild spirit and rugged good looks have Maggie reconsidering her less than ladylike ways. For the first time, she’s tempted to put on a gown, just to see how Colin would react. She can only imagine what might happen next: a kiss… a touch… and perhaps enough sultry heat to melt a cold Highland night.
What do you know about the History of Scotland aside from your Walter Scott readings, the dozen times you watched Braveheart, and the tid bits that come by either the Outlander novels or the tv show?
Chances are, you’ll answer my question with “very little” at best and you wouldn’t be alone in that.
My advice? Scottish History For Dummies by Dr William Knox. Or at least some light research.
In my opinion, when reading Historical Fiction a basic knowledge of the period and subject should subsist. After all, the story the author constructed stands on those pillars of history and determines the quality of it.
Not that it should be an indepth History lesson, but at least know if the historical facts are right! Get your facts straight to avoid being run through by a sword or stabbed with a dirk when you meet some Highlander from times long past – Brenda Joyce Masters of Time style.
History is important and Historical Fiction is a great tramboline to broaden our knowledge.
LET’S ACTUALLY TALK ABOUT THE BOOK…
MacLean’s Passion is described in the GR blurb as “perfect for fans of Maya Banks and Monica McCarty”. Some mighty big shoes fill, yeah? A daring claim, if you ask me: Maya Banks and Monica McCarty write some magnificent Highlander romances… what if this was a complete flop? There would be some nasty backlash from “fans of Maya Banks and Monica McCarty” and then some others. Fortunately, Sharon Cullen managed to deliver on her promise.
Also, I am powerfully relieved that MacLean’s Passion can be read as a standalone, because I haven’t read Sutherland’s Secret: sheesh!
Fast-paced, well-written and engaging, Sharon Cullen’s story rotates around one of the most perfectly matched couples I’ve read about and it is full of excitement, the prison escape being just the kickstarter.
Extraordinarly, I was more impressed by the Maggie than by Colin – I usually loathe the whiny heroines but Maggie was just the kinda kickass gal I want to star in more books – so that’s a particular thumbs up 😉 – and if we want to take it further, I found the political issue more intriguing than the romantic one. Maggie and Colin’s relationship was swiftly resolved, the only conflict being not between the two of them but with Evan Sinclair aka hugest insensitive, hypocrite douchbag to ever walk the Highlands — I did not like the guy AT ALL!
While I enjoyed my time with MacLean’s Passion, I do not feel the need to run to the library, the nearest bookstore, or even open my Amazon account to get the previous installment. I don’t even am in that desperate state of mind and sheer physical hurt where I moan and whine because I want the next one. I don’t feel the need to thumb backwards through the pages to re-read my favourite scenes, I don’t feel the need to hold a physical copy of the book in my hands, I don’t want more.
I liked it. I spent some nice hours with it, but I don’t want a second date. You get the drift…