A Fire Within

Written by Kathleen Morgan
Review by Phyllis T. Smith

In 16th-century Scotland, Caitlin, cherished sister of the head of the Campbell clan, is abducted by Dar, an outcast from an outlawed clan, who hopes to exchange her for his brother whom the Campbells have imprisoned. Dar is the most honorable and attractive of kidnappers, and he and Caitlin fall in love. Can they clear Dar’s name and get Caitlin’s brother to accept them as husband and wife?

The novel has a religious subplot, as Caitlin seeks to deepen her faith when matters look darkest. It gives her character real dimension, but the dialogue does get preachy. Occasionally Morgan’s Highlanders use terminology that could be lifted from a modern business memo. (“No matter that Nara wedding either of us would’ve brought Clan MacNaghten the prestige and influx of additional funds we so desperately needed.”) However, the story is expertly crafted and full of pulse-pounding, unexpected twists, and the main characters are well drawn and likeable. Historical romance fans may willingly overlook any flaws, and just enjoy meeting Caitlin and Dar.

This is Book 3 in Morgan’s These Highland Hills series, but no knowledge of the earlier books is required to follow the story.