Wonderful romantic Christian Highland warrior novel. I enjoyed this story very much. It had mystery, romance & a good clean story. It wasn't predictable as most romance/mystery novels are. It made me cry and it also made me laugh. Definately would recommend.
A Great Story but...
In her first effort, Ms. Taylor takes her readers to the medieval Scottish Highlands where we are introduced to the spirited and spiritual Akira MacKenzie who is kidnapped on her wedding day. She is taken to the lands of the rival MacPhearson clan to honor a promise the clan chief's son had made to his dying father. The story is uplifting, the romance very sweet and the characters are appealing, but I did have the following problems with this debut novel:
Ms. Taylor has a tendency to sometimes describe ideas or events when showing would be much more effective. Also, she doesn't seem to trust the intelligence of her audience to figure things out. In any kind of mystery, an intellectual challenge is for readers much, much more engaging than simply leading them by the nose. It was completely obvious who the traitor was. Instead of intriguing subtle clues, Ms. Taylor left lit-up neon signs.
This next comment has to do with the way Akira's faith is presented. Ms. Taylor took a lot of time to get costumes and customs right, but did not seem to spend a great deal of time on Christian history. I think that one young woman's faith having such a positive effect on so many is a wonderful concept but this novel was set in the Middle Ages without ANY explanation of how Akira came to understand the Father as a personal God. (Actually, this concept is relatively new even to modern Christianity) It was common practice even up until the first part of the 20th Century to see God as an entity to be feared and reverenced. It would have been quite extraordinary for any individual of that time to see God as tender, loving and compassionate and intimately involved in the mundane day-to-day existence of an individual. It would not have taken much to explain Akira's beautiful relationship with God and give it historical credibility at the same time. That would have made for a much more believable story.
My one last quibble is with the development of the characters. Although they were extremely likable, I have to agree with the reviewer who claims they are rather underdeveloped. I would say not quite 3-dimensional. But this is a skill that takes time and experience to develop and I look forward to Ms. Taylor's next novel.
It's an ok book and I like the way it's written. The settings are also appealing. What I had trouble with was understanding what and who I was supposed to care about in the story that was going to justify the time I took to read it. Worse yet, by the end and after reading it, I still can't answer that question.
i really enjoyed this book maybe because the girl reminded me of myself. what a great example of how a relationship should work. it was sexy without sex. it was Godly without over doing it but it was well written by a person who must have a wonderful relationship like myself and that is saying something for i have been married for 29 years :o) i recommend this book to anyone getting into a relationship.
(This is an ARC, so it's not the final edited version.) I liked the book and think the story line was really good. Akira was just about a saint. I probably would have strangled Bryce. ;) The characters were great and the plot was great, but I would change a few things about the book. There were some places in the book that I would have talked about rather than mentioning in passing later. It seemed like there were some opportunities in the book to create tension or some other feeling and there wasn't a scene for that part. It was just mentioned later on in the day or week. Also some of the scenes probably could have been a little more drawn-out than they were. Like when they catch the bad guy it is over a little too fast for me. I think this has tons of potential and I'm looking forward to reading the final version!
HighlandBlessings is the story of a highland warrior who kidnaps the daughter of his greatest enemy and clan chief to honor a promise he made to his dying father. Bryce MacPhearson, a highland warrior, kidnaps Akira MacKenzie on her wedding day to honor a promise he made to his dying father. While Akira s strength in the Lord becomes a witness to Bryce, she struggles to overcome her anger and resentment when he forces her to wed him, hoping to end a half-century-old feud between their clans. While Akira begins to forgive, and Bryce learns to trust, a series of murders leaves a trail of unanswered questions, confusion, and a legacy of hate that once again rises between their families. Clearly, a traitor is in their midst. Now the one man Akira loves no longer trusts her, and her own life is in danger. Can Bryce look beyond his pain and seek the truth? Will Akira discover the threat against her before it s too late? How will God turn a simple promise into bountiful Highland blessings?