The Maid of Lorne
“Wed or dead by nightfall.” That’s the choice Sebastien of Cleish gives Lara of the MacDougalls, besieged in Dunstaffnage Castle in 1308. Sebastien has been ordered by Robert the Bruce to take the castle, using Lara’s siblings as hostages. Lara chooses marriage, so that she will at least be alive to resist. After such a dire threat, she is surprised by the humane treatment Sebastien metes out to the castle’s occupants. And she discovers that, despite being coerced into it, she enjoys the marriage bed. When her kinsman Eachann tempts her to spy against the Bruce’s forces, Lara is torn between clan loyalty and her growing love for Sebastien.
Sebastien and Lara are rounded characters, and Brisbin treats romance fans to some juicy bedroom scenes. Unfortunately, I found the secondary characters flat, and some plot points don’t make sense. An enemy described as one who “murders without care” suddenly forgets his murderous nature, merely knocking a main character unconscious when he could have easily killed him. Readers who are more interested in romance than plot logic won’t let such nitpicks bother them, and will like this book.