BOUND TO PLEASE was a quick and exciting romance that had me hooked from the very first chapter. The story was both fast paced and just plain fun to read. I'm not sure if its considered erotic but as someone who reads all kinds of historical romances, this was way more erotic than many of the books I've read that are termed as such. The sex scenes were beyond sizzling, and much hotter than I honestly expected.
Overall it had a great plot, delightful dialogue, and lovable characters. I adored Ewan and thought Brianna was wonderful too. Their love story was a blending of young love, love at first sight, and finding your soulmate. Some of the scenes were sweet and tender and actually brought tears to my eyes. I was really surprised with the depth of the characters and writing, and would highly recommend this romance to one and all.
NOTE: There's a sequel to this book that stars Ewan's twin brother Callum titled "TWELVE NIGHTS" which I am very much looking forward to. And while this was my first time reading anything by Ms. Tarr, it definitely won't be the last =)
Hope Tarr's BOUND TO PLEASE, a Medieval Scottish romance debuts a new category of Historicals in the Harlequin Blaze line. The story behind the romance is quite moving but one historical inaccuracy detracts from one of the finer Medieval literary allusions. Characterization, an intriguing plot and visual imagery make BOUND TO PLEASE a very good read for fans of red hot romance.
Ten years ago, in 1450 Scotland, Brianna MacLeod was the daughter of the MacLeod laird. A childhood encounter with Ewan Fraser opened her heart to the innocence and love in her heart as the two pledged to marry each other and no one else. Now, ten years later, Brianna has inherited her position as Laird from her now deceased father. She has married to the man her father chose and now stands as a widow. Her previous marriage, a marriage of duty, never inspired her heart. Always a hard worker, Brianna is saddled with all the responsibilities of her job and her heart is closed off. Nothing of the innocence or playfulness of her youth remains. Brianna kidnaps Ewan and chains him to a bed. Determined to get pregnant and bear a child from the two rival clans, Brianna once more feels the need to fulfill her duties of laird to bring peace. Love has nothing to do with it. Also, Ewan's twin brother Callum has been accused of murdering her father. As Ewan becomes her captive, Brianna finds herself attracted to him and he to her. In a game of love play, can they break through all the conventions and duty that bar them from love and open hearts? Can physical love lead to something more?
The characters are rich and multi-dimensional. Smart, spunky, dedicated and recognized for her role as laird, Brianna is a medieval lover and feminist's fantasy of the kind of heroine she might discover in a medieval text. The initial encounter between Brianna and Ewan stirs the heart with its innocence and beauty. The plot is fast paced and yet full of intriguing subplots and secondary characters to make the reader want to learn the fate of the couple. Having a woman laird in a position of power was certainly refreshing in a Medieval set romance. Every detail is well placed, especially in the plotting of Brianna's father's death. The author makes nice twists and turns in the captive/captor motif as Ewan and Brianna struggle for control. Through an alternating lose and gain of power, their hearts and bodies become truly unchained.
Medieval enthusiasts might notice an incongruity between the setting of the story and Caxton's publication history in the sections describing Chaucer's CANTERBURY TALES. A few added details describing the beauty of a manuscript version or change in the date of the main action of the story would have made this a superlative sexy Medieval read for both Medievalists and lovers of red hot romance. This is not a big issue for the vast majority of readers, but this literary history detail troubled me while reading at the same time as other story details delighted with their precision.
BOUND TO PLEASE is a very good choice for readers craving a scorching romance in a historical setting where the heroine is assertive and not easily overshadowed by the men around her. Mixing innocence of heart with determination, Briana will do anything to achieve peace and Ewan will stop at nothing to achieve both his freedom and her pleasure and deeper love. Medieval romance readers unaccustomed to Blaze as a line might find this romance beyond their steaminess comfort level. BOUND TO PLEASE, metaphorically and literally, has vivid imagery of a woman of breaking through the body and the sense of duty to reach the playfulness and level of love and desire often deadened by societal and gender obligations. BOUND TO PLEASE is a fun historical fantasy read with a Scottish flair for Blaze and spicy historical romance enthusiasts.
Everyone said it couldn¢t be done, especially in 15th Century Scotland. But, Brianna MacLeod is the new Laird of her Clan. In a few short weeks she has lost her beloved father, her husband and the baby she had on the way. But, as she is Laird now she is going to get over these losses and rule her people, as she was groomed to. Even if that means kidnapping Ewan, the brother of her husband¢s murderer. Unfortunately, Brianna has a history with Ewan and he is one man that she has never gotten out of her mind, though they met when only children.
Ewan has never forgotten Briannna and he never expected to be kidnapped and then chained to her bed. All the fantasies his brain had concocted had them living happily ever after, even if it was never to be. Now he is enslaved and angered, that is until he spends more time with her. Now who is really the enslaved one? Will honor and clan loyalties keep them apart?
Bound to Please has it all; a hot Highland warrior, smart as a whip female Laird, a bit of star crossed lovers and it is all nicely wrapped up into a Harlequin Blaze romance. What more could any red blooded woman want? Finally, a historical in the Blaze line. I was pulled in from the prologue right up until the very end. I even found myself rooting for the secondary characters almost as much as Ewan and Brianna. I found the story to be very well written and Ms. Tarr¢s Bound to Please was an excellent choice to be the debut historical in this line. If you are a fan of Scottish Highland romances and/or the Harlequin Blaze line you need to snap this one up before it becomes a collector¢s item.
As a female Brianna MacLeod, laird of the clan MacLeod, needs to secure her precarious position as leader of her clan by birthing an heir. Only problem is that her husband has been murdered by her enemy -The Fraser. So in retaliation, she kidnaps the laird's brother, Ewan Fraser, to *use* for her purpose to get with child and then set aside. But soon Brianna realizes that she might not want to give up the *pleasure* of Ewan's company.
A Blaze historical? Yep, and its a rather good one considering that I didn't expect much. Although it did read more like a contemporary book and it is a little light on the historical aspects of the story, you still get the feel that your in medieval Scotland. So this shouldn't turn off readers of either genre.
I found it to be a surprisingly entertaining story with an engaging couple. Lots of love scenes (more in fact than the average blaze book) and a pretty decent revenge plot make Bound To Pleasure a good choice for summer reading. So if your in the mood for some steaming hot brawny Scot romance thats low on the historical mumbo jumbo, you might want to pick this one up.
In 1460 on the Isle of Skye, the Macleod Laird risks a fighting feud with their neighboring clan the Frasers by kidnapping a high ranking family member. The Laird plans to insure a baby is produced between them so no one can challenge her claim as the Macleod laird.
Ewan Fraser is stunned what has happened to him as he is the brother to the powerful clan Laird. He knows Brianna Macleod, who abducted him, from when them met ten years ago and vowed to one day marry though he scoffed at her belief she will be the laird. She informs him that he will make her pregnant. Irate at himself as much as he is with her he is looking forward to her having her way with him while he is in chains.
BOUND TO PLEASE is a fabulous historical romance in which Hope Tarr uses gender bending in the positions of leadership, captivity, and the boudoir to refresh the Scottish historical theme. The story line is fast-paced; mostly driven by the chained hero and his female capturer who takes him although there is a troublemaking villain trying to use the situation for personal gain. Readers will enjoy this amusing aptly titled novel.
Almost all at once, Brianna MacLeod lost her husband, her unborn bairn, and her father, while becoming the first female laird of the clan MacLeod. Keeping that title is easier said than done, and Brianna must conceive a new heir to carry her line.
Now widowed, she determines the best candidate for the job is the brother of her sworn enemy. Ewan Fraser's twin took her husband and child from her, it is only fitting that he should pay recompense for his clan in the form of sexual service. She'll return him to his home unharmed once she has conceived.
Ewan has never forgotten the girl that stole his heart ten long years ago, the girl he made a blood bond with. Being with Brianna is a dream come true, but he never quite expected it would be with him bound to her bed to perform a stud service. But the chains on his wrists are nothing compared to the chains she has on his heart...
I really wasn't sure quite what to make of a historical romance with a female laird, but the idea definitely intrigued me. I couldn't imagine how author Hope Tarr would pull it off, but having now read BOUND TO PLEASE, I can say she totally made it work for me.
Is the idea of a woman as laird historically accurate? I don't know, and to be honest, I don't really care. I'm no historian. I simply enjoy a good story, and this plot definitely made for a fascinating read. I can't confirm the historical details, but I know when I enjoy a book.
The role reversal with a woman in power kidnapping the hero and subjecting him to her desire was a wonderfully delicious twist on an old theme! What really makes Brianna's role as laird interesting is that although she has been groomed for it by her father for nearly half her life, the reality of assuming the responsibility is somewhat tricky. Still, finding her footing as the leader of the clan MacLeod is easier than finding her footing as a woman who can stir desire in the object of her affections. Little does she know that Ewan already loves her for herself, without all of the trappings of femininity, though he has no complaints whatsoever when she quite literally lets her hair down and embraces her femininity.
Ewan's pride compels him to try and resist Brianna's attempts at forced seduction, but his body can't deny what his heart feels for her. Being used for his seed and then cast away is not part of his long-term plan for her - he intends to seduce her body, mind and heart.
Of course, everything isn't as it seems. Brianna's convinced that Ewan's brother killed her husband, and he swears by his brother's innocence. No matter how much this couple loves each other, they cannot be together until the mystery of her husband's murder is solved and the long-standing feud between the Fraser and MacLeod clans is ended. Unraveling this mystery results in some surprises in the plot, and provides both obstacles to their romance and the impetus for their finally pledging their betrothal.
If you are looking for a sexy romance with hunky Scottish heroes and a bit of intrigue in a historical period, you will not want to miss BOUND TO PLEASE!
This is the first book By Hope Tarr that I have read and her beautiful style and depth blew me away. She really puts you right in the time period of her characters and it's delightful to learn the history of the places and people in the story. Historical novels are some of my favorite books to read. Highly recommend.