Shelves: historical-fiction , romance , fantasy , 3. But my first impressions of the novel were good, I found it to be a kind of fae version of Outlander , where the female protagonist ends up time-travelling several centuries back into a Scotland complete with kilted men, feudalism and sexism. There she is forced to marry a Scot who she grows to love against the odds - yeah, definitely sounds very Gabaldon-ish, minus about pages. I lost confidence in Hawk the hero of the novel somewhere in the middle but he managed to win it back again towards the end. In pretty much every romance story you will find at some point that one or both parties will experience an element of self-doubt relating to their partner.
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Above dew-drenched branches, a lone gull ghosted a bank of mist and soared to kiss the dawn over the white sands of Morar. The turquoise tide shimmered in shades of mermaid tails against the alabaster shore. The elegant royal court of the Tuatha De Danaan dappled the stretch of lush greenery. Pillowed chaises in brilliant scarlet and lemon adorned the grassy knoll, scattered in a half-moon about the outdoor dais. Elegant fingers demonstrated a puny space of air, and titters sliced the mist. Claims her soul.
How easily my men are provoked! The man rolled his eyes and disdain etched his arrogant profile. He crossed his legs at the ankles and gazed out across the sea. The man at her feet was vainglorious, and not as impervious to her provocation as he feigned.
She briefly considered forgoing this vein of revenge. The Queen was not a woman to be compared with another woman and found lacking. Her lip tightened imperceptibly. Her exquisitely delicate hand curled into a fist. She carefully selected her next words. In the silence that followed, the statement lingered, unacknowledged, for the cut was too cruel to dignify. The King at her side and the man at her feet shifted restlessly. Droplets of water trickled from his wet hair down his broad chest, and gathered into a single rivulet between the double ridges of muscle in his abdomen.
Moonlight shimmered through the open window, casting a silvery glow to his bronze skin, creating the illusion that he was sculpted of molten steel. The tub behind him had grown cold and been forgotten.
The woman on the bed was also cold and forgotten. She knew it. Too beautiful for me, Esmerelda thought. But by the saints, the man was a poison draught, another long cool swallow of his body the only cure for the toxin.
She thought about the things she had done to win him, to share his bed, and—God forgive her—the things she would do to stay there. She almost hated him for it. She knew she hated herself for it. He should be mine, she thought. She watched him stalk across the spacious room to the window which opened between fluted granite columns that met in a high arch twenty feet above her head.
Esmerelda sneered at him behind his back. Foolish—such large unprotected openings in a keep—or arrogant. So what if one could lie in the massive goosedown bed and gaze through the rosy arch at a velvety sky pierced by glittering stars? Had he been counting the stars? Silently reciting bawdy dittys to prevent himself from toppling over and falling asleep? No, Esmerelda vowed, she would never lose him.
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Beyond the Highland Mist
Beyond the Highland Mist
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