Highland Wishes Reviews

 

"England and Scotland Unite!"

Victoria Blackstone is about to be married to Lord Bothington, a notoriously brute to women. The year is 1296 and such treatment is automatically bypassed when political and financial benefits accrue through such arranged marriages. But what does one do with an independent-minded woman like Victoria who is refusing to cooperate and whose beloved grandmother's protection cannot help her here? Indeed Lord Blackstone treats his own mother brutally, so little hope hearkens there.

Unbeknownst to the Blackstones, Grant Drummond is about to avenge the death of his father, as well as numerous others slaughtered by Blackstone on the orders of King Edward. Grant is raging with revenge and attacks, afterward kidnapping Victoria. While initially she fears being raped by him, he scorns the notion that he would soil his family's Scottish bloodline with her English children and is frustrated later with his increasing attraction to her and she to him. Both of their lives are about to change as they wed and must adjust to their passion and overcome their painful distrust fashioned from years of historical animosity.

Misunderstandings frequently fraught their relationship such as the secrets Grant hides and will not tell her, which causes tremendous and unnecessary sorrow. More than one character is living with a history of being unwanted, and this novel goes a long way to depicting the healing that can occur, at the same time that Grant is joining William Wallace in the fight for Scottish freedom. Irony indeed that laces the history of England and Scotland.

Very nicely done, Leanne Burroughs!

Reviewed by Viviane Crystal on June 26, 2004
www.thebestreviews.com

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Wonderful Medieval Debut Novel

Highland Wishes is a first time Historical Romance by a new writer Leanne Burroughs. As with all first writers, you see the small things she will learn to polish in time. However, what hits the reader immediately is her true love for the romance of the period. As a Scot and someone who has dealt with the history of the country a big chunk of my life, it takes a lot to impress me. Burroughs does. First off she knows who Andrew de Moray is - big points for that, lass! Burroughs has written a wonderful Scottish Medieval full of heart and adventure.

It's set in the period just before the rising of William Wallace. Her tale uses the Scottish struggle for independence against Edward Longshanks, Edward I of England. Grant Drummond vows revenge against the English man who killed his father, and in the quest for vengeance, he kidnaps Victoria Blackstone to use against her father. Little does he know, Victoria has long born the hatred and indifferences of Blackstone.

Victoria is a gentle woman, long hurt by her father's coldness, promised in marriage to a disgusting man. Despite her fear what her father will do, she is determined not to be another of the poor women who have wedded her betrothed, only to die an early death. She has suffered, often harshly under her father's tyrannical control; she is determined this will not be repeated in a husband. As she plots her escape, she little knows that fate is conspiring to play a role in her life.

Grant is a dashing hero, though he definitely is an alpha warrior, willing to do what he must. Naturally, Grant and Victoria get off to a rough beginning, but slowly he breaks through Victoria's reserve. Burroughs writes in prose that touches the reader, makes them feel as they watch the struggles of this couple. Soon, the Captor turns into Protector, as Grant vows Victoria's father will never harm her again.

Burroughs has done a thorough job researching the book in an effort to tell a story that is strong, memorable. She shows promise of being a very delightful writer of this genre. Her next book Her Highland Rogue is in the works, so I am sure everyone will be looking forward to another heartfelt saga from this wonderful writer.

DeborahAnne MacGillivray
The Best Reviews
10/31/04

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Highland Wishes is every reader's dream of the perfect story! Author Leanne Burroughs has penned a majestic tale filled with romance, history and adventure.

Set against the background of the Scottish War for Independence against England, a young laird avenges his father's brutal death and kidnaps his enemy's daughter. He takes her back to his castle in the Scottish Highlands, where they both learn a lot about love, forgiveness, and trust.

Wonderfully written, with vibrant characters, this story is a masterpiece of historical fiction. Readers will be impressed with the amount of research the author has done. She has creatively mixed actual people with fictitious ones, thereby allowing the reader to enter into this momentous period of history. The anguish and adventure of this war becomes very real, as it provides the reasoning behind the characters' words and actions.

This reviewer especially enjoyed the Scottish words and phrases, which will cause readers to "hear" this Gaelic lilt in their minds. The stubbornness and superstitions of these people are told with a touch of humor and wonder.

It was a brilliant stroke to bring together a Scotsman and an Englishwoman during this time of war. Readers will come to a fuller understanding of their differences, and hope they can be overcome through love. Grant Drummond is the epitome of a hero, while the plight of Victoria Blackstone will tenderly touch readers' hearts.

It's this reviewer's opinion that the author truly enjoys writing and pleasing her audience. Readers will sincerely appreciate the creative touches in this book. At the start of each chapter, there is a quote from a famous writer or leader, which provides the essence of that part of the story. Each quote seemed to have been chosen with care, and is an additional treasure to the story.

Readers will also be delighted to learn that a sequel, The Highlander, is planned.

Highland Wishes will fulfill the reading desires of all lovers of historical fiction!

- Joyce Handzo, In The Library Reviews

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Victoria Blackstone is determined not to follow in the footsteps of her betrothed's previous wives. Having suffered abuse at the hands of her father, she doesn't intend to suffer at the hands of her husband too. She plots to escape her fate knowing if caught, she would be punished severely. Grant Drummond wants revenge. He was told that his father was murdered by Victoria's father and has come to avenge him. Grant captures Victoria not knowing who she is and takes her Scotland. What will happen when Grant finds out who she is? Can Victoria survive in Scotland? All these questions will be answered by the end of the book.

Victoria is an amazing girl. Her spirit still remains strong even with the punishments meted out by her unloving and uncaring father. She is resilient but protective of her heart and body. Grant is a wonderful hero who is capable of extreme patience. A warrior on the outside, but he has a heart of gold. Although they get off to a rough start, Grant becomes her protector, lover and savior. He is able to break through her shell. It was extremely touching to watch him reassure her that he won't turn into her father. After so many years of cruel treatment, it takes a very long time before Victoria feels secure in her new home and her role as wife. These two characters are the focal point of the book and their love story drives the plotline. They are ably assisted by the many secondary characters who appear within the pages. The backdrop of Scotland and her inhabitants appear throughout this book and the author imparts her knowledge to the reader.

This story feels like an honest portrayal. The violence and hatred between the Scots and English is vivid. The reader can feel the deep emotions simmering below the surface. The author has shown throughout this book the depth of research she must have done. The author uses apt descriptions of people, places and language to pull the reader into the story. Ultimately, it is the characters that keep the reader turning the pages. Highland Wishes is a great Scottish historical romance with memorable characters. This is the first book this reader has read by this author and I hope it won't be the last. We look forward to Ms. Burrough's next book, the sequel to Highland Wishes.

Susan, Fallen Angel Reviews



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When Scotland is in the middle of their war of independence, a young laird kidnaps his sworn enemyís daughter to avenge his fatherís death. Despised by her father, Victoria loathes the man she is told to marry, but fate steps in. Being kidnapped by Grant, she ends up finding the love she gave up on. Grant finds that Victoria isnít like anyone he has ever met, and he finds the other half of his soul. These two remarkable people find love and happiness in the middle of war, and find that by overcoming their fears, torments and sorrows, they can claim their love for all time.

This reviewer found that this book was a wonderful story set in a time when tension was high between England and Scotland. She writes a well-crafted story, with multidimensional characters and exquisite backdrops of Scotland. The storyline is a fast-paced tale with much detail to specific areas of history. The reader can feel this authorís love for Scotland and its many wonderful heroes.

The characters connect immediately and donít stop until the end. At the end of the book, the reader wonders what happens next. The interplay between characters was smoothly done and helped the story along. It was a very smoothly told story. This reviewer was easily captivated by the story and was enthralled by it until the end. The reader will laugh and cry as you read this wonderful story. The reader feels all the pain, torment and disillusionment felt by both main characters, but also the joy and love they felt. Ms. Burroughs has crafted a well-researched story that gives a glimpse into Scotland during a time when there was upheaval and war for independence. This reviewer is anxiously awaiting her next novel in this series and commends her for a wonderful job done.

Dawn Roberto
Love Romances
www.loveromances.com

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The year is 1296. Grant Drummond has just become the new Laird to Clan Drummond following the brutal death of his father. Grant knows one thing; he will avenge his father's death. He and his clansmen head to Blackstone Manor to exact their revenge.

Lady Victoria Blackstone realizes fleeing Blackstone Manor is her only chance to escape her father's abusive control, as well as her betrothal to a man that she is certain fatally beat his previous wives. When she is kidnapped in the midst of her escape, she becomes uncertain of her fate.

Though Grant has taken a young woman hostage, he believes his quarry is a servant. Soon, he finds himself falling in love with the girl. When the truth of her identity is discovered, will the knowledge seal her fate or lead to a love to last the ages?

HIGHLAND WISHES is a meaty, Scottish historical romance. Topping 650 pages, it is obvious that Leanne Burroughs has painstakingly researched her setting. This is not a quick read. Instead, the author transports you to a new place, a new time, and holds your attention from beginning to end. Despite its length, I found my attentions wandering back to it. I ended up forgetting about more pressing needs. Instead, I curled up with one goal - to find out what happened in the end.

Tracy Farnsworth
Roundtable Reviews
www.roundtablereviews.com
April 2004

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With the news of her unwanted betrothal, once again Victoria's father has shown how much he really hates her. She goes to talk to one of the two people in her home that actually cares for her, her grandmother. After crying on her grandmother's shoulder, Tory tells her grandmother she must get out, for if she has to marry the man her father has betrothed her to, she will truly die. She tells her grandmother of her prayers to escape the place, and her grandmother, being the wise woman she is, tells Tory to be careful what she wishes for since we do not always get our wishes answered in the way we plan.

Grant is called home to his Scottish castle after learning about the death of his father. Finding the man who killed his father is his first priority, and finding him, he sets off toward the England-Scotland border to kill the man. After the attack on the Englishman's lands, he discovers a young woman and takes her to his home, without ever realizing that he actually has the daughter of his sworn enemy. Moreover, never realizing how much his people will take their hatred of the English out on the girl.
Tory is afraid for her life as she is taken deep into the Scottish lands by the warriors who look at her with pure hatred. After meeting the unfriendly people in Grant's castle, she is sure that she has been taken there to be killed. Grant does nothing to help these feelings since he makes it a point to prove to everyone that she is just his prisoner, and gives her all the worst jobs to do around the keep. Little does she know, Grant is trying to keep his true feelings hidden, for he has sworn never to love and this slip of a girl is causing him to feel strange things. After the continuous cruelty from his people to Tory, he is devastated when she is almost killed, and though this changes his behavior toward her, he is still feeling protective of his heart. Many obstacles lie in the way of true love, and Grant and Tory must face them together.

I truly enjoyed reading this book. It is one book that cannot be put down once you begin. From cover to cover, you are drawn into the story. Through the laughter and the tears, you will finish this book wishing it would not end. Leanne Burroughs has truly written a wonderful Scottish historical and the research that must have gone into this book is just wonderful. I would recommend this book to anyone who loves to read Historical romance. If I were going to compare this author and book to anyone, it would have to be Julie Garwood and her Scottish historical romances.

Tangela William
The Romance Readers Connection
www.romancereadersconnection.com
April 2004

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The author conveys easily her love for Scotland throughout this book and weaves an interesting story of a woman who attracts trouble and the man trying to protect her from herself. I found it an enjoyable read. The plotting is well done, and while the story seems familiar, to lovers of Scottish romance, this offers a pleasant interlude. Ms. Burroughs shows strong writing skills in this, her debut novel, and shows promise of good things to come.

Karla Lang, The Road to Romance

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England and Scotland, March 1296

When Grant Drummond finds out his father has been murdered by the butchering English, he decides to take his revenge in kind. After the carnage, Grant kidnaps his enemy's daughter, whisking her away to his Highland castle, where they begin to wage their own war -- a battle of wills and emotions.

Victoria Blackstone, Tory to the only two people who truly love her, decides that instead of marrying the wretched old lord as her father ordered, she is going to run away. Dressed in the stable boy's old clothes, Tory is stunned when she hears the sounds of battle outside in the courtyard and hides, only to be discovered and kidnapped by a brutish Scot, who, it seems is determined to torture her very soul.

But the tide slowly turns and Tory is no longer the captive, but the captor of Grant's heart. Can the two ever overcome the differences between their countries, and the darkness of Tory's past, which seems to rear its ugly head at the most inopportune moments?

Well written, HIGHLAND WISHES had me turning each page anticipating what would happen next. Tory is a vulnerable, sweet heroine, haunted by the insecurities and abuse of her past, but with an inner strength that leaks out whenever she is backed into a corner. Grant is a great hero, determined to prove his love to Tory; without actually admitting it, he does everything in his power to prove her worth to him.

I do have to say that the dialogue was the best I have ever seen in regards to the Scottish words and pronunciation. It was refreshing to actually read words as they are truly spoken in Scotland, and in my own family's homes. Secondary characters are true to the Scottish form in their hatred of the English...even to this day, if my uncle is anything to go by. I enjoyed the visits by William Wallace, and his open distrust of Tory is, I imagine, exactly how he would have reacted.

For a really good Scottish story with secrets, love, insecurities, evil, battles, and laughter, HIGHLAND WISHES fills the bill. Kudos to Ms. Burroughs for a true to form read that kept me entertained and wanting more. I look forward to her sequel, HIGHLAND DREAMS.

Catherine McHenry, Romance Reviews Today

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