Sunday, October 11, 2009

Review - Highland Dragon

Title: Highland Dragon
Author: Kimberly Killion
Publishing Date: October 2009
Genre: Medieval
Rating: B+
Sensuality: Hot
Book Disclosure: Received an ebook from the author

Calin is the Lard of Clan MacLeod and has been engaged to the daughter of the rival clan Kinnon since he was ten years old. The match was made to bring peace between the two clans, but on the night Akira was born things went terribly wrong. Calin's father was murdered right before his very eyes and Akira would have been killed too if it wasn't for Calin's quick thinking. He secreted Akira away, to grow into a young woman and when the time was right, Calin would come back for her and make her his wife.

Akira had always known she was different. She didn't look like any of her family. She also was sent to school through her benefactor and she knew that one day she would marry him. She hoped he would be kind to her and give her the babies she longs for. At eighteen, her family believed that her betrothed had come for her, but instead she is kidnapped. Calin finds this out when he comes for Akira himself. Along with Akira's foster brother, Calin rides to get back his bonny bride.

Akira is an interesting combination of a forthrightness, but she is also inexperienced in the ways of the world. Yet for only being eighteen, which I think is young for a heroine (I am showing my age here) she comes across as older. Although, she does have her moments of immaturity, but for the most part she is a thoughtful individual. I found the exchanges between Akira and Calin, especially in the beginning of the story when they first meet, to be a lot of fun to read. There are some really good conversations between the two of them. Calin likes to tease Akira for her naivete.

Calin has a lot of secrets he is keeping from Akira and this eventually drives a rift between the two. Readers know early on that this is going to happen because there is plenty of foreshadowing. That is the one drawback to big misunderstandings. They tend to leave a black cloud over the romance, because the reader knows that eventually the secrets will come out. They just don't know when.

There are also some complicated politics between the clans. I felt like I followed along fine, but there were a few shaky moments. I got a little confused when the English were brought into it. Fortunately, I felt like everything was clearly wrapped up at the end. One interesting secondary character Catriona, Calin's former mistress was a surprise. Her character starts out as a vindictive woman, but later on changes her tune due to Akira's forgiveness. I always enjoy reading about a villain who is redeemable. Some villains aren't redeemable and there is one of those in this story too.

Here is what others had to say:

Leontine's Book Realm
Book Junkie
Heather's Reading Romance
The Good, The Bad, The Unread

This book can be purchased in print or kindle format at Amazon.


Carolyn Crane said...

I always love a redeemed character like Catriona, too! Esp. Bad to good!

This book sounds cool. Yes, 18 is young for a heroine to me, too, but I suppose in those days they died in their 40s. Still, are we just getting old?

The deep blue of the cover really works for me, too!

nath said...

I feel like reading this one for its political intrigue... but seriously, the heroine named Akira is just putting me off sooo much!! I mean, it's such a Japanese name ^_^; So to read a highland scottish romance with that name? Really off-putting... but I did buy the book... and then, I realized - I don't like the way scottish is written ^_^;... You know, all the ye and stuff ^_^; Ah well. One day :P Glad you enjoyed it though! Lots of good reviews so far for this one.

Jill D. said...

Carolyn - Hey, thanks for follwing me :)

All of a sudden it feels like 18 is so young. I must be getting old because it never bothered me before.

Nath - I thought Akira was an unusual name, but then when I was reading it I started looking at it almost like Erica. I don't know what made me think of that, but it did. I can see what you mean about the scottish wording. It didn't bother me like it did you, though. It might be more of a problem for someone who's first language is not English.

Patti said...

18 seems a bit young to me too, but I guess it was appropriate for the times. I bought this but haven't read it yet, it sounds good!

Jill D. said...

Great Patti! I can't wait to hear what you think of it :)

Tracy said...

I think 18 is young but since this is a medieval novel that's actually OLD. lol They used to marry them off very young in those days. Yuck.

Good review Jill. It sounds like something that might be up my alley.

~ames~ said...

I've been eyeballing this one and I bought, but I'm extra glad I did so knowing you liked it. Thanks for the review!