Hello, and welcome back! I spent half of today in the kitchen, making a yummy dinner that will also feed us the next couple nights. Good thing, since I'm about to start a long stretch of work before my next day off, so wanted to get this week's first review up before that starts.
This time out, I have Monica McCarty's Highland Scoundrel (Ballantine). Duncan Campbell has been away from his Highland home for ten years, ever since being betrayed by the woman he loved and branded a traitor. Now he's back, and he's determined to force Jeannie Gordon to admit her part in the scheme and help him to prove his innocence. But their first meeting after all this time doesn't go quite as he'd imagined, when Jeannie shoots him. Jeannie never imagined Duncan would come back. In the decade he's been gone, she's been married, had two children, and been widowed. And she's never forgotten him, or the way he didn't trust her love for him. Now, while she can't quite bring herself to let him be caught, she also can't tell him about the secret she actually is keeping from him. As they work together, old emotions rear their heads, tangling them up into a more complicated relationship than their previous one. The more time Duncan spends around Jeannie, the more he realizes she didn't betray him ten years ago, which means that someone else ruined his life and that person is still out there, most likely waiting a chance to finish him off. The trouble is, there are only a few suspects, and he can't believe any one of them could set him up that way. Thinking like that is a good way to find himself wearing a hangman's noose. Jeannie and Duncan's story starts off in the present, but a large chunk of it immediately goes back ten years and their initial falling-in-love before returning to the present. I'm not sure I liked that much. It might have been nicer to have the information sprinkled throughout their present rather than all dumped in one spot near the beginning. I'm afraid I liked Highland Outlaw better than I liked this one. This one's earned only three of Cupid's five arrows.
Until next time, happy reading!