How to Marry a Royal Highlander (The Renegade Royals #4) by Vanessa Kelly
Released: June 30, 2015
Reviewed by Sheena
At sixteen, Alasdair Gilbride, heir to a Scottish earldom, fled the Highlands and an arranged betrothal. Ten years later, Alasdair must travel home to face his responsibilities. It’s a task that would be much easier without the distracting presence of the most enticing woman he’s ever met…
After one escapade too many, Eden Whitney has been snubbed by the ton. The solution: rusticating in the Scottish wilderness, miles from all temptation. Except, of course, for brawny, charming Alasdair. The man is so exasperating she’d likely kill him before they reach the border—if someone else weren’t trying to do just that. Now Eden and Alasdair are plunging into a scandalous affair with his life and her reputation at stake—and their hearts already irreparably lost…
Fun. Even paced and funny. How to Marry a Royal Highlander kept me in stitches! What I found most refreshing was the unique plot which is sometimes difficult to find with these historical romances, as the typical trope is so tried and true. However, Highlander definitely had my rapt attention. Secondary characters are absolutely hilarious and though things were a little tangled in the start, once I got my head around it, I had no problems keeping up.
Eden is a magnet for scandal and trouble. Unlike her twin sister, she raises her mother’s ire almost constantly. Aside from the unlikely romance, the relationship between Eden and her mother, Lady Reese, was an absolute highlight.
“Are you sure you’re not feeling better, Mamma… After all, you’ve spent the last three days in bed.”
The physician thinks you’re coming along quite splendidly. Mamma rarely fell ill, but when she did she did so with style, taking to her bed with dramatic pronouncements and availing herself of a steady diet of medicinal cordials and powders.
Manipulative in the most ambitious manner, Lady Reese was an absolute scene bandit, stealing every scene and winning my support. Though shrewd, she was not malicious and truly saved all of her social climbing and ton regaling efforts to work in favor of her children, having ironically enough, settling to marry not much more than a country squire herself! This dynamic supports the timeless adage that parents want more for their children than they often have for themselves and author Vanessa Kelly’s ability to illustrate this familial devotion is appreciated.
Family ties aside, we are all here for the romance people and Eden and Alasdair have quite the complicated affair of the heart. They both harbor a long-suffering attachment and affection for one another and Eden’s exile to the Scottish Highlands where Alasdair is royalty is just the opportunity they needed to forget the farce and fall in love already as fighting their passion is a losing battle!
He nudged her thigh’s a fraction wider, and then his hands drifted to the damp nest of curls that concealed her. Gently, so gently, he parted her inner folds and began stroking, slicking his fingertips through her moisture…
And then she was nothing but sensation and a tight spiral of need…she felt open and ready for him, desperate to be filled.
“Aye lass, you’re ready…look at me love. Just keep looking at me.”
Unfortunately, danger and an undesired betrothal may stand in their way for good. But if there is one thing Eden knows, it’s how to create a scandal and with her mother at her back, they concoct the most zany plot to ensure Alasdair is disentangled from his undesired bride-to-be and remains alive long enough to live his HEA with Eden. What I found most profound is, for all of her moaning and groaning about her mother’s meddling and sneaky ways, Eden jumped right into the muck to play her part in the plot to keep her man!
“Eden, I will be having a very stern talk with Alasdair once this is over.”
“You’re more than welcome to do so, Mamma, after I’ve boxed his ears.
“Put those pistols down this instant,” thundered the earl.
“Lovely. That’s all we needed to make this a complete farce…”
“No need to worry…” Edie’s mother said as she plucked the pistol from Fergus’s hand. “I know exactly what to do.”
I’m walking a minefield to avoid fun spoilers, so I will just reiterate how funny and charming How to Marry a Royal Highlander really is. I probably enjoyed the comedy even more so than the romance – it was that funny. I also appreciated that things were pretty straight forward. No annoyingly drawn out denial of affections. H/h fall early on and the rest of the ride is how they overcome very legitimate obstacles to their success as a couple. If I had one area of contention, it would be in the resolution. The ultimate solution to their romantic hindrances felt a little too perfectly sewed up. I was a little deflated with the resolution ad had a “really, that’s it!!?!” eyebrow raising moment. It was not enough to poison my affections for the book in total and there is a yummy epilogue (which I love) so while I think the end was a little eye-roll inducing, all in all I enjoyed my time with this novel.
The kilts were dead sexy too by the way.