Karen Ranney – The Highland Duchess

Karen Ranney weaves a subtle romantic spell over her readers in her newest Highland adventure.

I greatly enjoyed this quick moving and light hearted book. It was vastly entertaining in several parts and I simply adored the characters. Karen takes her readers on a bit of an adventure as she weaves a subtle romantic spell that keeps you turning the pages. But, I found that the end let me down a bit, I wanted more from the story. There was a very key plot item that was left completely up in the air and unresolved… part of an upcoming book perhaps? If not, that is a major faux pas in my book. But the love story was great, the writing masterful, and the characters delightful.

The beautiful but haughty Duchess of Herridge is known to all the ton as the “Ice Queen.” But to Ian McNair, the exquisite Emma is nothing like the rumors. Sensual and passionate, she moves him as no other woman has before. If only she were his wife and not his captive . . .

Little does Emma know that the dark and mysterious stranger who bursts into her bedroom to kidnap her is the powerful Earl of Buchane, and the only man who has been able to see past her proper facade. As the Ice Queen’s defenses melt under the powerful passion she finds with her handsome captor, she begins to believe that love may be possible. Yet fate has decreed that the dream can never be – for pursuing it means sacrificing everything they hold dear: their honor, their futures . . . and perhaps their lives.

We start with Emma, our Highland Duchess whose abusive and controlling husband had the good manners to die on her, finally. She is unsure of herself and so far from confident that you want to take her hand and comfort her. She has an inner strength that just needs the right circumstances to show, the right moment where Emma is tested and can truly be herself and shine.

Our dynamic hero, Ian, is just the man to provide her with the right opportunity to stiffen up her spine. After all, she is crazy about him and he is engaged to another woman. You know there are a whole slew of issues with this plot line. Oh yes, Emma is engaged as well, shortly to be married to none other than Ian’s disreputable cousin. Ian is serious and scientific with a quirky personality that is playful but at the same time deeply passionate. He has a quiet commanding way about him that will draw you to him like a moth to a flame.

Interesting love scenes but nothing spectacular and well fit to the tone of the book. I would give it an 7 out of 10 on my Sexy Scale. (10 being very graphic in sexy content – 1 being so tame there isn’t even a real kiss… ok, well maybe a chaste one)

Overall a good read, one of the better Karen Ranney books I have picked up. I give this book an 8 out of 10 overall.

– My reviews can also be found on The Season for Romance. Check out the website, blog, and forum for great reviews, covers, announcements and more!

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