HUGE CAVEAT! I haaaaaaaaaaate reading about torture. Nope not a fan. I didn’t think this book would have it. And while I gritted my teeth and muscled through the telling of Jamie’s floggings at the beginning of the book, I could not deal with some of the scenes later in the book. I ended up skipping them and enjoyed this book just as much. Based on the parts I did read, I give it a happy (and flushed) four stars.
Our heroine, Claire Beauchamp Randall, has just returned to her little provincial life (think the song “Belle” from “Beauty and the Beast”) after being a nurse in WWII. She and her husband Frank were separated during the war and are in Scotland for a second honeymoon to get to know each other again. Frank is a professor and a hobby genealogist.
If you or I were on vacation and saw a screaming stone, we’d probably back away from it. Claire doesn’t, and ends up in the middle of a skirmish in 18th century Scotland. She is found by a band of Scots, including James Alexander Malcolm MacKenzie Fraser. He’s Jamie, our redheaded and kilted hero who spends most of the book injured from battles and/or beatings. He could certainly use someone with experience in the healing arts.
I enjoyed reading about Claire learning to survive in a completely foreign (to her) place and time. She’s an intelligent, brave and ballsy woman. Jamie is strong, cunning and probably the most sensitive Scotsman in the land.
There were parts of the book that were written to be sensual, and I found them quite sensual! Let’s leave it at that. There was a scene between Claire and Jamie that is controversial, and I found it appropriate for the time period. It’s not like couples in 1743 Scotland sat down and used “I feel” statements when working out their disagreements.
Despite flipping through the ERGH parts, I enjoyed the book. Of course I would! Men in kilts are hot and “in a kilt” is permanently burned into my Google search history. However, I won’t go through the rest of the series because I like my hero and heroine exactly where this book left them.