Review: The Highland Duke by Amy Jarecki

Review: The Highland Duke by Amy JareckiThe Highland Duke by Amy Jarecki

Series: #1 Lords of the Highlands
Genres: Historical Romance
Published by Forever on March 28, 2017
Pages: 384
Format: ARC
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She'll put her life on the line for him . . .

When Akira Ayres finds the brawny Scot with a musket ball in his thigh, the healer has no qualms about doing whatever it takes to save his life. Even if it means fleeing with him across the Highlands to tend to his wounds while English redcoats are closing in. Though Akira is as fierce and brave as any of her clansmen, even she's intimidated by the fearsome, brutally handsome Highlander who refuses to reveal his name.

Yet she can never learn his true identity.

Geordie knows if Akira ever discovers he's the Duke of Gordon, both her life and his will be forfeit in a heartbeat. The only way to keep the lass safe is to ensure she's by his side day and night. But the longer he's with her, the harder it becomes to think of letting her go. Despite all their differences, despite the danger-he will face death itself to make her his . . .

The Delight

It’s been a bit since I read a highlander romance so when this one was offered, I was ready to give it and a new to me author a go.  The historical setting and other elements including the first Jacobite Uprisings tearing through Scotland, the Clans, and the class difference romance of Scottish Highlander aristocrat and illegitimate gypsy healer was the grounds for a fantastic story beginning an exciting new series.

Review

This one was pitch perfect with all that it offered up.  It nailed the historical background and situation and struck it good with the characters and their unequal romance.  This was not just aristocrat and commoner, but ventured into taboo territory because she was a hated gypsy and he was a divorced man who would never be able to petition for a church marriage to Akira.

They were an interesting pair of characters.  Geordie isn’t so much a surprise.  He’s commanding, honorable, and tough, yet has his thoughtless moments.  But it is Akira who really takes up the characterization and romance elements a notch.  She has a strong sense of duty and honor to her profession and that’s why she ended up on the run with Geordie in the first place.  She also has personal honor and respect which is why she is tempted to come to him on the only terms he offers that will be comfort for her destitute family as well, but she wants more and needs to know that she is not a fling or disposable to him.  To be fair to Geordie, he was committed to Akira and offered what he thought was all he could and she never understood this, choosing to believe the worst (and understandable because all her life she had been given no reason to trust).  She had a villager’s eye view of the world around her, but she was suspicious when he tried to make her see the greater state of affairs.  I think that was the hard part for me with this unequal romance and it gave it a fairytale quality rather than realistic.

So, all in all, I enjoyed this outing with new to me author and new series.  I can’t wait to get the next installment.  This is for those who enjoy moderately spicy, exciting historical period highlander romance.

My thanks to Forever for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.

Challenges

Romance Roundabout #81 HR
Literary Pickers #77 kilt
New Release #42
Bad Boys #11

Other books similar to The Highland Duke that you may want to check out!

 Review An Oath Taken by Diana Cosby Review To Kiss a Kilted Warrior by Rowan Keats

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I was born and raised near Sacramento, CA. I have read since I was four years old and developed tastes that run the gamut of literature. I went away to college and have a degree in education, a certificate in family history research, and a certificate in social work. I worked for a non-profit agency with low income families for 20 years which included being responsible for the children’s library and promoting/teaching adult literacy. I have lived in Southeast Michigan for the last 18 years and I am currently a book addicted homemaker with a cat and husband who keep me grounded. Recently, I made it a challenge to review each book that I have read as a favor to author friends who said reviews are important. I have done reviews for Good Reads, Amazon, eBay, and Smashwords, but mostly at Goodreads and Amazon.

Latest posts by Sophia Rose (see all)

  • wow this has a lot going on and I love the sound of how complicated the romance is, boo I feel like I am missing out

    • It did. It told the broader history of Scotland at this time, but also the story of the gypsies and also an adventure and a romance.
      It is so hard to keep up with all the new releases. I see reviews on books and I know I missed out. 🙂

  • I saw this one on NetGalley (I think it was NetGalley) and I was interested, but I passed on it at the time because I had too many eARCs to get through (honestly though, when do we not…). I think I would like this book! Highland romances for the win — and Geordie seems like my type of guy. I am so glad you enjoyed this book, Sophia!

    Have a wonderful weekend. =)

    Alyssa @ The Eater of Books!

    • Yes, it is so hard not to click all over the place when I’m on NG or get a list from a publisher. So many sounds so good. Geordie is sigh-worthy. 🙂

  • oh I am so glad that you liked this one too!! I really love this author and she did great with this book. I do like reading this period in the Scottish setting, and I had a blast with these characters.

    • Yes! It’s exciting and makes for a good action plot to have Highland Romances during this era. I enjoyed the added element of the gypsy situation and her healing arts along with their class differences.

  • Oh, I wish I had grabbed this book when it was offered to me. It sounds really good. This is a period of time and seeting that I really enjoy. I think the characters in this book sound really interesting as well.

    • So hard to predict which ones to pick and sadly we can’t pick them all. It hit just the right spot for me b/c like you, I love the time period. Hope you like it, Carole!

  • Ahh this is on my list. I ran out of time for it in March. Oops! I’m glad to see it was pretty good (and had some spice). I’m going to try to get to it this coming week 😀

    • Yeah! I think I had about a dozen that all released within a few days of each other so it made it tough to get to them by release day. But, not like I can fit them all in to post on the same day so that makes the dilemma easier. 🙂

      • LOL This is very true. There were a ton released this last week of March. It was crazy. Part of it was my fault on this one. I read another highlander and needed something between them and to refresh myself and that’s what made me run out of time. Bad blogger girl. lol Glad you made it to all of yours!

        • Nah, that’s not bad blogger stuff, that’s smart. You’re working out a way not to set the poor Highlander book that came second up for a fail b/c you know your limits. 😉
          Seriously, I’ve had to really factor in ‘my reading limits’ when it comes to reviewing so I don’t burn out or go stale on perfectly good books. So it makes perfect sense to me to juggle the reading/listening schedule like that.

  • it’s been age since I have read a highland book like that! I used to like them a lot but I don’t know I stopped. I should go back to them

    • It’s been quite a while for me, too, Melliane. I was ready to really enjoy this one b/c it has been some time.

  • Bookworm Brandee

    I’ve read about many Highlanders but I don’t think I’ve read anything quite like The Highland Duke, Sophia, so I’m curious to say the least. I love that Akira is a gypsy and therefore someone Geordie shouldn’t deal with on any level. It is too bad that their romance was portrayed that realistically though. I’m glad you enjoyed it. I put it on my tbr. 🙂

    • Yes, it was most definitely a different situation. They were so much more than opposites that I actually had a tough time believing they could make it work, thus the fairytale feel to it. Though the rest of the story was quite authentic feeling and their individual situations felt quite realistic. Hope you enjoy it, Brandee! 🙂

  • I’m always looking for new Highlander reads and this sounds like a great start to the series! Lovely review, Sophia Rose!

    • This one is a great one for Highlander romance fans, Cyn. Hope you get the chance.

      Thanks!