Once Forbidden (The MacKendimen, #2) by Terri Brisbin
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I'm a huge fan of Terri Brisbin's Scottish romances and this is one of her novels that I really enjoyed. It really deserves 4 1/2 stars, and I've even considered giving it 5 stars.
"Once Forbidden" is unlike any highland romance I have read before Set in one of my favourite time periods, the early 1300's, Anice McNab has just wed her betrothed, the heir to the clan MacKendimen, Alesander —a family powerful in both name and arms. In the years she has waited for this day, Anice has dreamed of becoming the lady of the clan and its castle, and of finding love with her handsome betrothed. But her dreams of love are brutally shattered on her wedding night when she is brutally raped and beaten by her husband. The Laird of the MacKendimen's and father to Alesander sends his son away to the King in order to protect Anice and the baby she conceived on her wedding night.
The Laird then requests the return of his illegitimate son Robert, a son that he has not accepted publicly to the clan, to take care of Anice's duties whilst she awaits the birth of her baby.
Robert is still struggling to deal with the fact that he has not been acknowledged by his father and his rightful place within the clan. He also finds himself falling in love with Anice, who is fighting her own demons in dealing with the brutal way in which her marriage commenced.
I loved Robert for the way in which he respected Anice and was prepared to do anything he could to gain her trust and make her feel comfortable in their relationship.
Just in case you are wondering there is not a detailed description of the wedding night but throughout the book we get glimpses of what may have happened so that the reader can understand Anice's terrible fear of even coming into contact with the men in the clan. I'm not the sort of reader that likes too much detail when it comes to things such as rape. There's quite a bit of humour in this book too.
This is actually book 2 in a series and I would love to read the other books from the series, but quite a few of Terri's older novels are very hard to come by. I managed to find this one on the Australian Borders website as an ebook. So far no luck in finding the other two.
If you love a good Highland romance then I recommend you have a read of "Once Forbidden".
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