★★★★★ PRAISE FOR LAKE OF DESTINY ★★★★★
"Delightful, charming, and heartwarming!" - New York Times bestselling author Wendy Higgins
"So much charm it's magical!" - BookGeek Reviews
"I loved this!!! It reminds me of a Nora Roberts series, The Gallaghers of Ardmore . . . but a Scottish version with men in kilts!" - Two Chicks on Books
"Outlander-Lite Meets Gilmore Girls in Scotland. This is a story that sucked me in from the start and didn't let go until I'd laughed, shed a few tears and worked up an appetite. Fast. Fun. Romantic. Read it!" - Jenuine Cupcakes
"What a beautiful love story, rich and vibrant in color and sounds and landscape. This is the perfect novel to get lost in for a few fabulous hours." - Amazon Customer
"This book had it all, romance, fantasy, folklore, drama, and emotional family issues. It's a great story and I enjoyed every minute." - Amazon Customer Linda R.
"It was funny, sad and uplifting and just brings you in for a warm embrace. I look forward to more from this amazing writer." - Amazon Customer Jan Janus
"Full of myths, legends, and life. The plot is good, the characters are great, and I couldn't put it down. When is the next book?" - Amazon Customer Cheryl Bond
"Loss and courage to learn to trust enough to let love in. A great story." - Amazon Customer DebbieW
"Wonderful. The character and plot development were fantastic. The story flowed so well it was hard to put down." - Amazon Customer
"I stayed up until midnight to finish this book. I loved it. This story touched my heart!" - Amazon Customer
"This was so good I'll be reading it again. A wonderful story . . . with a touch of the fantasy of Brigadoon. I had to read it in one sitting." - Amazon Customer Debra Chase
"A modern love story that somehow manages to hold on to that whimsical fairy tale essence." - Amazon Customer Amanda
PRAISE FOR MARTINA BOONE'S COMPULSION
"Skillfully blends rich magic and folklore with adventure, sweeping romance, and hidden treasure . . . Impressive." - Publisher's Weekly
"Eight Beaufort is so swoon-worthy that it's ridiculous. Move over Four, Eight is here to stay!" - RT Book Reviews, RT Editors Best Books of the Year
"Delivers a compelling mystery about feuding families and buried secrets, not to mention a steamy romance." - Booklist
"Darkly romantic and steeped in Southern Gothic charm, you'll be compelled to get lost in the Heirs of Watson Island series." - #1 New York Times bestselling author Jennifer L. Armentrout
"The perfect Southern family saga: charming and steamy on the surface, with cold-blooded secrets buried down deep. - Kendare Blake, New York Times bestselling author
"A fresh twist on the Southern Gothic--haunting, atmospheric, and absorbing." - Claudia Gray, New York Times bestselling author
"Beautifully written, with vivid characters, a generations-old feud, and romance that leaps off the page, left me lingering over every word, and yet wanting to race to the compelling finish. Not to be missed!" - Megan Shepherd, New York Times bestselling author
From the Author
Although I hope very much this book feels real to you, it is a work of fiction, and the setting is a fictional place based on a real one that I enjoyed visiting. The Balquhidder Glen in the Scottish Highlands captured my imagination from the moment I stumbled across the inconspicuous little road sign for Rob Roy MacGregor's grave while driving down the A84. The time that I spent in the glen was magical, and it is truly one of the most beautiful places I've ever been. Because I didn't wish to do it a disservice, and because I needed to rearrange a few things to suit the story I was writing, I gave it a fictional counterpart in Lake of Destiny
. Balquhidder is pronounced Balwhither, and so that's what I named the place where Lake of Destiny
and Magic of Winter
Officially, this is the third installment of the Celtic Legends collection. The stories are standalone, each complete in itself, but some of the characters are recurring and their lives continue. You'll find references to them as you read. For this reason, I do recommend starting with the first book, or going back to it to see where everything began. But you won't lose anything by reading out of order.
And now, for a brief note about Christmas and Hogmanay, which is the last day of the year in Scotland. I mention in the book that Christmas was not officially celebrated in Scotland for over 500 years, and didn't resume as an official holiday until 1958. Once Catholic, Scotland became Protestant after the death of James V in 1542 and the "rough wooing" of Mary Queen of Scots, who was eventually executed in 1567. That time saw what is called the Scottish Reformation, in which the country broke with away from the influence of the Roman Catholic church and developed a strong national and strongly Presbyterian "kirk," or church. Holidays like Christmas that were seen as predominantly Roman Catholic in influence were banned in 1560, as were older practices such as bonfires and particular types of song and dancing. Some of these reformations were taking place in other parts of Britain as well under the influence of Oliver Cromwell, but while the celebration of Christmas returned in England, it remained banned in Scotland. In contrast, Hogmanay, whose roots may go back as far as the celebration of the winter solstice, took on greater significance and became a major celebration with a host of its own traditions.
Balwhither Glen, of course, loves nothing more than a celebration, and its traditions are its own. In keeping with the winter solstice idea behind Hogmanay, I've revived the practice of burning old grudges in Magic of Winter. And while the book takes place in December around Christmas and Hogmanay, its themes of family, loss, hope, redemption, and renewal are a perfect reminder that good things can be just around the corner at any time of year.