My rating: 5 of 5 flames
This is the third installment in Jennifer Ashley’s Highland Pleasures series, and it is most definitely a fabulous read.
For those of you unfamiliar with the Mackenzie brothers, they are 4 brothers who have rank, wealth and political clout, but they don’t care. Can you imagine? They are peers in Victorian England, and they don’t care. Amazing. Added to that, they are Scottish, and they do as they please. This makes for a wild series.
In this book, we enter to see Cameron getting lucky with a woman, and the heroine is hiding in the curtains! And what do you suppose happens? She gets caught of course. Ainsley is searching for a love letter that she knows Cam has. No, it wasn’t written by her, it was written by the Queen. Her Majesty is being blackmailed by the very woman seducing Cameron, and Ainsley was given the task to retrieve the letter.
Cam doesn’t believe she is what she seems for a second, he made that mistake once several years ago, and got burnt. But Cam isn’t what he seems either. He has many scars, both inside and out, and when you find out how he got them, and what happened, you will cry. It’s absolutely heartbreaking to hear about his past, but it’s even worse to see what society thought. Men bring their horses to him to train, and one in particular hates Cam. He only lets him train his horse because no one else will take her. Cam wants the horse so badly, but the arrogant jackass won’t give her up. That side-story was fantastic, and Ainsley’s little role in helping out was sweet.
Watching Cam try to be a good father by not making his own father’s mistakes is so heartbreaking to watch-and Daniel is growing up so fast. But Daniel’s been raised by Mackenzie bachelors. Is that really the best thing for an impressionable young man? All Cam wants is to be with his horses and raise his son. He never expected to be blown away by a tiny little widower names Ainsley Douglas. And Ainsley is so much more than she lets on.
Their romance was passionate, and surprisingly sweet. I guess I expected more of a lust first affection later, but the combination of both lust and love, and of Cam’s protective streak, meshed so well.
Daniel will surprise you. Maybe being raised with 4 Mackenzies isn’t all that bad—he has a good head on his shoulders, respects women, and only made me hope he has a book coming. (and according to her website, HE DOES!!!)
The only thing I missed was we never saw their half-brother, Inspector Fellows. I thought he’d become more of a key player in this series, but he wasn’t even mentioned.
The set-up for Hart’s book (next year-boo! I don’t wanna wait!) is getting good, and I tortured myself by reading the teaser for his book. I’m warning you now, reading the excerpt will only make you want his book more. Jennifer Ashley is an auto-buy for me, and once you’ve read this, she will be for you too. Her writing blends humor, love, passion and storytelling into a beautiful story you won’t want to miss.
**Thank you to Jennifer Ashley for the advanced copy