How To Forgive A Highlander by Michelle McLean

How to Forgive a HighlanderBarbara’s rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

Series: The MacGregor Lairds #4
Publication Date: 7/8/19
Number of Pages: 214

This was a fast-paced, action-filled read and I enjoyed it. I haven’t read any of the other books in the series and felt perfectly comfortable with this one. There was a bit of ‘repeat’ of things from previous books, but only to add to the context in this book. I don’t feel as if I missed anything by not having read the earlier books. One thing I have noticed from discussions of the series – the couples are all into bickering. This book takes place at the same time as book #3 – How To Blackmail A Highlander – and features the heroine’s lady’s maid and the cousin to the hero.

Rose Thatcher, lady’s maid to Lady Alice Chivers, loves her lady, England and her life in London. Her family is all there and she loves living in the Chivers household. Yet, she is standing on the dock in Dover watching a ship, with her lady on it, sail away. Her lady has a plan and now Rose has to carry out her part of it. She must return to the family’s lodgings and pretend that Lady Alice is in her room – indisposed. She has to do anything she can to prolong the discovery that Lady Alice is missing.

William MacGregor is also on the docks seeing off his cousin Philip. He has to be very careful not to let anyone see his face and recognize him because he has been deeply embedded in the camp of the MacGregor’s mortal enemy, Ramsey. He’s acting as a spy and feeding information back to the MacGregor’s. Ramsey also has spies everywhere and if one of them spotted him, his life would be forfeit and they would know that Philip had left the area.

As William is surveilling the dock area, he notices a woman – just standing – watching the ship on which Philip just sailed away. Can she be a spy for Ramsey? He can’t afford for anyone to report that Philip has left the area, so, the only option that William can see is to take the woman someplace where he can then question her. That gives Philip time to get further out to sea if she is a spy, and if she isn’t – well – no harm is done. Yes, we all know how that is going to end. In a set of blunders, one after the other, the woman ends up back at Ramsey’s camp with him. Now, he has to keep her protected from the lascivious hoodlums working for Ramsey.

As Ramsey gets word that Lady Alice has flown the coop, he announces that they’ll all be leaving the next day. William must now manage to glean information on Ramsey’s route, manpower and plans as well as keeping Rose protected. They have quite a journey – both on the trail to Scotland and to their HEA.

There were a couple of things that left me wondering. For instance, Will kept dispatching messengers – many of them. Where did he get messengers? He was in the middle of an enemy camp with no friends around anywhere. Also – why would they send for a ‘Reverend’ to perform a marriage ceremony when all of Scotland and England were Catholic at that time?

I think I had a love/hate relationship with the main characters. I loved that each could be protective and caring toward the other. But then… He had to have the lowest of low self-esteem. He blamed himself for everything that went wrong in the world whether he could have prevented or changed it or not. I really got tired of that. For Rose, the constant ‘I must be with my lady’ jus drove me insane.

It is a nice read whether you’ve read the previous books or not.

I voluntarily read and reviewed an Advanced Reader Copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

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Avid reader/reviewer of historical romance and historical mysteries.

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