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The Viper by Monica McCarty
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The Viper

by Monica McCarty

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Highland Guard (Book 4)

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I have to admit that when I started this series I thought the whole concept might be pretty cheesy. It sounded like a Highlander/Navy SEAL mashup that was just cashing in on two hot romance sub-genres. Boy was I wrong. There are so many historical details, real life people, battles & places that I've taken to cheating and reading the author's note first because the research is so fascinating.

In this book the heroine is Bella MacDuff, a real life Scottish heroine who risked a great deal to crown Robert Bruce and was punished in a horrible way for it. The hero, Lachlan MacRauri has been in previous books as a surly, out for himself type. It takes most of the book for his whole story to come out but there are plenty of times along the way when you see that there is more to him than he wants others to see. It is a romance though, so it's no surprise that Lachlan is honorable at heart and that Bella gets a happy ending that she probably did not get in real life.

I saw some reviews complain that there was too much historical fact and not enough action or romance. I thought that there was plenty of action, they were on the run for much of book and there were a couple of escape scenes. I also thought the romance itself was strong. There were many lovely scenes between the two. And if Lachlan was on the edge of being too much of a jerk sometimes for me, he never truly crossed the line and always redeemed himself. I do enjoy straight historical fiction, as well as historical romance, but often the characters who are living interesting lives don't have the greatest outcomes. It's fascinating but sometimes a little depressing to read. For me this book fulfilled my interest in history and my desire for a happy ending. ( )
  CCleveland | Nov 27, 2013 |
Book was amazing. I had started it a long time ago but never finished it, got sucked into another series (BDB) But I finally finished it and it was great. The romance was amazing. It had great suspense and of course the fairy tale ending. ( )
  Author_AndriaLarge | Sep 1, 2013 |
This is my favorite book in the series (even if there is more to come). I simply fell in love with Lachlan MacRuairi from the first book and several books later, he's still the number one.

There is something dark and evil in Lachlan MacRuairi that appeals, the bad-boy-rebel without a cause that you want to change, but the truth is there is so much more about him that you need to read the book (and the others before it) to understand this character.
Lachlan obeys no one, is a hired sword, a mercenary without conscience and feelings and that is how we know him through the series...until he meets Lady Isabella MacDuff, the Countess who left everything behind just to crow Robert, the Bruce, king of Scotland, including her most precious 'thing': her daughter Joan.

I must confess that I didn't like Lady Isabella at first but in the end I believe that the two make a great couple. He is dark and full of secrets, she is light and full of hope. They balance each other and even if their path was a dangerous one, full of betrayal, hurts, wrong choices and a lack of trust (based on the shady past of Lachlan) they still made the best of it.
They are both strong, faithful to their ideals and it's impossible not to want to know them better.
Even if this 'love story' is fiction, I can't help to feel awe of the courage of Bella MacDuff, because she did actually suffer for her rebellious act. ( )
  Lost_Lenore | Jul 16, 2013 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Monica McCartyprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Ferguson, AntonyReadermain authorsome editionsconfirmed
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"Prized for his snakelike stealth and deadly strikes, Lachlan "Viper" MacRuairi is a warrior to enlist but not to trust. His only loyalty is to his purse, his indifference sealed by bitter betrayal. All that changes when Lachlan is tasked to protect and deliver Bella MacDuff to the king's coronation--and the proud, lushly sensual countess unwittingly challenges him to his greatest battle yet: to love again. Passionate and devoted, Bella has defied Britain's king and her own husband to place the crown on Bruce's head, and for this she pays a terrible price: Losing her daughter and her freedom to her husband's vengeance. Imprisoned with barbaric cruelty, she vows to reclaim her child, even if it means selling her soul--and her body--to a dark, lethal warrior whose eyes glint like steel, but who makes her skin tingle and her breath race. Together they embark on a rogue mission with sinister twists and turns that threatens not only Bella's gamble to save her daughter--but also her heart."--p. [4] of cover.… (more)

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