Veena’s review of Never Seduce a Scot (Armstrongs and Montgomerys, Book 1) by Maya Banks
Historical Romance published by Ballantine Books 25 Sep 12
Maya Banks takes us back to medieval Scotland in her latest historical romance where she introduces us to clans Montgomery and Armstrong, who are feuding as is normal for that period in history. Clan Montgomery has a young, handsome bachelor laird and Clan Armstrong has a beloved daughter who is a bit daft, who doesn’t speak and seems to be lost in her own mind most of the time. Clearly this is not a retake of Romeo and Juliet, instead its a marriage forced by political necessity and a king who is using holy matrimony as the tool to force peace. I started reading the book as a bit of a skeptic and finished a total fan. While the author does an absolute fabulous job with a disabled heroine, the cherry on top for me is Graeme, who, for a man of that time, is absolutely adorable. I’ll take one of those, please.
Furious at having to sacrifice his dreams of a family, children, heirs to lead the clan after he’s gone, yet determined to do his best for his clan, Graeme Montgomery bows to the king’s dictate. Surprisingly, he finds himself protective of and attracted to his bride to be. More surprising, Evenline’s not mad, as he had feared – just deaf after a head injury when she was thrown from her horse. Content to be an adored, sheltered member of her family, she never disabuses her family that she’s a fully functional human being and she can even understand what people are saying when she can watch their face and read their lips. For the first time when she meets Graeme, she’s attracted to the vibrations of his voice, even though she can’t hear his words, and she’s content to marry him and start anew in Clan Montgomery.
It’s not an easy road to be deaf and hated for her very name in a Scottish clan. We really see how cruel women can be to other women in how the Montgomery women treat Eveline and take advantage of her desire to find a place in the clan and be an asset to her new husband. Her new sister-in-law, who has been brought up in love and allowed to blossom and learn to read and write and spread her wings, gives us her hope of a happy future and then, of course, the slow blossoming of Eveline’s own relationship with her new husband. He is her champion. He stands up to his family and his clan. I wanted to cheer when he banishes the women from the castle after learning how they mistreated his wife.
However, there are others not happy with the union of the two most powerful clans in Scotland. Graeme is stabbed by a warrior wearing Armstrong colors and it is the bravery of his wife which saves him. Then she is kidnapped and disappears, causing her family to go on the warpath. Cooler heads prevail and the Armstrong and Montgomery lairds see past the anger to unite to save Eveline and lead up to the happy ending.
I absolutely love how creatively Graeme and Eveline use the vibrations from their voices to tell each other of their love, especially when Graeme goes down on his knees in front of both assembled clans. What a great ending. This story is a great start to a new series and I am looking forward to the events that will unfold in the rest of the books in the series.
This sinfully sweet new romance from Maya Banks features a remarkable woman whose rare gift teaches a gruff Scottish warrior how to listen with his heart.
Eveline Armstrong is fiercely loved and protected by her powerful clan, but considered “touched” to outsiders. Beautiful, fey, with a level, intent gaze, she doesn’t speak. No one, not even her family, knows that she cannot hear. Eveline taught herself to read lips and allows the outside world view her as daft, content to stay with her family. But when an arranged marriage with a rival clan makes Graeme Montgomery her husband, she accepts her duty—unprepared for the delights to come. Graeme is a rugged warrior with a voice so deep and powerful she can hear it, and hands and kisses so tender and skilled he awakens her deepest passions.
Graeme is intrigued by his new bride, whose silent lips are ripe with temptation, whose bright, intelligent eyes can see into his soul. As intimacy deepens, he learns her secret. But when clan rivalries and dark deeds threaten the wife he has only begun to cherish, the Scottish warrior will move heaven and earth to save the woman who has awakened his heart to the beautiful song of a rare and magical love.
Read an excerpt.
Other books in this series: