LauraJ’s review of Some Like it Scot byDonna Kauffman
Contemporary Romance published by Brava 1 Jun 10
I’m not one for surprises. I like to know what is going to happen (books/movies/Christmas) and really if someone spoils something for me, I don’t care (I won’t however, spoil ending for others). I read the end of books first (not this one, though. E-readers make it a bit harder). So it caught me totally off guard when I found out that Ms. Kauffman had released a book with a Scottish Hero, in a kilt no less. I LOVED her earlier books Bad Boys in Kilts and The Great Scot. The books were fun, sexy and set in a location that I really, really want to visit someday. So after finding out that this book was coming out (only days before its release), I pre-ordered for my Nook and downloaded right before going on vacation. Once I started reading I found I couldn’t wait to get out of the Disney parks and back to our resort so I could sit on our balcony and read.
This is the first of what looks like three books in a new series by Ms. Kauffman (maybe, hopefully more?). Three boyhood friends live on a small island off the mainland of Scotland. Their local economy depends on flax and the custom made baskets woven from the flax thread produced there. It is a community of tradition and one tradition that has Graham MacLeod scrambling to either convince the people of Kinloch to end, marry a girl from the other predominant family, the MacAuley or give up his clan leadership to the next in line from the other family, Iain MacAuley, a man who has not ever set foot on Kinloch with motives that are unclear as to why he would want to be laird of this island.
Graham’s two best friends, Roan and Shay, seem very eager to help him get him married off. They know the marriage pact made between to the two families 400 years old may be old fashioned and antiquated but, why fix what’s broken. Roan has located the perfect woman for Graham in Annapolis, Maryland. Roan informs him that he needs to leave now since his time is limited in meeting Katie MacAuley and convincing her to marry him within 40 days. Problem is Roan neglects to tell him how limited.
Katie has been under the thumb of her family and her father’s business partners families since before she was born. She is considered more an asset to the business than a loved member of the family. She has never stood up to her overbearing, business minded family until Graham presents himself, complete in full Scottish regalia, and an opportunity to escape from under the control of her family.
Graham and Katie are both in similar situations. He’s being forced into a marriage he doesn’t feel is necessary nor will help the clans he is inherited to oversee. Katie is forced into a “business arrangement” that is for appearances only. Both are willing to go along with these plans, but reluctantly and hoping that others will see that it’s wrong. When Graham offers Katie an offer of marriage with a way out to help him she agrees seeing it as a way out and a way to take control of her own life. Soon, though, Graham realizes that he is doing the same thing to Katie that her parents have done to her and tells Katie that she can stay on at Kinloch for time to think and if she no longer wants to go on with the marriage arrangement she is free leave. But for some reason, neither of them can stay away from each other. When they try to withdrawal from each other’s lives there is an emptiness and a sense that it’s very wrong. Both have visions of them together, dreams that are the same and also very intense.
Graham and Katie are wonderful, strong characters. Despite the situation that both are faced with both individually and together they only want the best for each other. Graham is willing to give up his “title” so that Katie is not put in another situation where she feels like she’s just a business asset, while Katie understands Graham’s position he’s forced into by tradition. I love the respect that they have for each other. Either one could have pushed each other in one direction or the other but they didn’t.
The secondary characters are wonderful adding to the story only a little but also setting the stories up for the future books.
Since one of the very first books I read by Ms. Kauffman was her books set in Scotland it was so good to see her write more. I’m really looking forward to Roan and Shay’s stories. So I guess some surprises aren’t so bad after all.
THERE GOES THE BRIDE…
She’s cautious, careful—and about to lose control of her future to a marriage of inconvenience. So, what can reluctant bride Katie McAuley do? Easy—let a modern-day Prince Charming spirit her away for a month to his Scottish castle. There she can take refuge from her overbearing family and finally figure out what she really wants. But the more Katie sees of Graham MacLeod, the harder it’s getting to keep their arrangement strictly business…
As MacLeod clan leader, Graham had always placed duty to his heritage and people before everything else. Now with Katie as his “betrothed,” he’s finally satisfied a ridiculously outdated Marriage Pact to wed a McAuley descendant, letting him focus on more pressing matters, like preventing a ruthless relative’s takeover of his home island. If he could just keep Katie’s courage and honesty at arm’s length, not to mention their all-too-sizzling attraction…
**The next book in the series is Off Kilter and due to be released January 2011 and will feature Graham’s best friend Roan. I can’t wait!!*
Read an excerpt.