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3.5 stars for this Scottish tale, great hero but it took a while to really understand the heroine
on July 26, 2010
Set in Scotland during the mid 18th century, Melody Thomas provides an interesting time and place for her latest novel, Claimed by A Scottish Lord. Usually titles like this hint at an earlier time period and truthfully several times I forgot the setting. This book almost feels like a medieval romance. I enjoyed portions of this novel immensely; especially the final third of the novel but the first two thirds were not as entertaining, mostly because I never really understood the heroine's actions and view point.
Since Rose was three years old she has lived a quiet life at the abbey, tending villagers with her herbs and conducting experiments in science, plus searching for Arthurian artifacts. Her world abruptly changes when the new Lord Ruark Kerr Lord Roxburghe returns after several years at sea. Ruark has a history and friendship with Father Tucker at the abbey so he meets Rose quickly after his return. Rose forms an instant like and dislike with this man.
Ruark is not overly pleased to be back in Scotland, he has only returned to free his half brother from Lord Hereford, an Englishman who despises Ruark. Realizing that Rose could be a valuable asset in his negotiations to free his brother, Ruark kidnaps her. Rose almost kills herself in escaping; she is saved by Ruark, who is enchanted with the tall statuesque beauty. Ruark's point of view is very well written, the reader knows exactly how he feels about Rose. I liked Ruark, he is honorable and patient and he is self sacrificing and loyal, traits I admire in a hero.
Rose is harder to fathom. I felt as if this story, at least the first half or so, detailed Ruark's thoughts nicely but Rose's were focused more on other things rather than the hero. When she does think of the hero it is mostly in a fearful or distrustful way. I did not feel that she really liked him until the latter half of the novel.
The last third of this novel though has a different feel mostly because Rose's inner thoughts are filled with her feelings for the hero. Here she is contemplative, less judgmental and more open open-minded. Her softer side showed in almost all of her actions as did her loyalty. I admired her courage but she was also vulnerable too.
Overall this novel has plenty of action and the hero is a delight but the heroine's feelings toward the hero were a bit murky whereas his were well thought out and insightful, however the last portion of this novel shows the heroine in a much better light and she becomes just as likable as her hero, 3.5 stars.