DEVIL OF THE HIGHLANDS
Sands, in her inimitable humorous style, creates a wonderfully authentic tale replete with intrigue, surprise and, above all, the growth of enduring love between two people of vastly different backgrounds. This love becomes increasingly apparent as the heroine realizes that
a response of few words, followed
by appropriate action, is far more
meaningful and important than the mouthing of hollow phrases.
Evelinde d'Aumesbury's abusive stepmother has asked King Edward to arrange her marriage to the Scot laird known as the "Devil of Donnachaidh." When they meet, he's astounded by her unconventional behavior and she's shocked by his gentleness.
After their marriage, Evelinde discovers his nickname is partly due to several unexplained, violent deaths, including his father's murder and his cousin's suicide. The longer they're wed, the less she can believe he's involved. When attempts are made on her life, the suspense mounts and unexpected revelations escalate until they reach a crescendo and the truth is revealed. (AVON, Feb., 370 pp., $7.99)