White Rose Rebel

Written by Janet Paisley
Review by Marilyn Sherlock

Scotland, 1745. Bonnie Prince Charles lands to attempt to regain the throne and establish, once again, Scotland’s independence from the hated Union with England. The call goes to the clans to rise, but in one of them there is trouble. Aeneas, Chief of Clan McIntosh, is on the side of the Union but his wife, the Lady Anne, is most definitely not and leads the clan herself. The story of the rebellion unfolds—and the rest, as they say, is history.

Anne Farquarson, Lady McIntosh as she became, was the White Rose Rebel. Herself the daughter of a Highland chief, she led her countrymen throughout the rising, survived the defeat of the Scots at Culloden and on the death of her husband moved to Leith and is buried in St Ninian’s churchyard on Coburg Street. A white rose, the white rose of Scotland, the Jacobite rose, grows beside her grave.

This is the story of the ’45 told from Scotland’s viewpoint. It graphically tells of the events and the suffering caused to the Highland Scots by the Act of Union with England, something that I had not really appreciated before. The characters live and breathe through the pages, and although the eventual outcome cannot be in doubt, I found myself wishing that there had been a different ending.

A book to relish.