After her mother remarries, Hero Frasier, a wealthy merchants daughter, travels to the Highlands to find her only other relative, Aunt Elsbeth. When her guide disappears, Hero finds shelter in the ruins of an abbey, but she is not alone.
Ciaran MacLoarn is the last of his clan. He has returned from the American colonies to avenge his familys deaths at the hands of the nefarious MacDubhairs. Not only are all his kinsmen dead, but several of the women have been forced to marry MacDubhair warriors.
Strange circumstances bring this unlikely pair together. Hero puts her faith and her life in Ciarans hands as they search the Highlands for Heros aunt and Ciarans kin.
Clues lead them down a path of betrayal as they try to find out exactly why the MacLorans were slaughtered. What they discover is not what they expect: brides forced into marriages who have become content with their cunning noblemen and traitor husbands.
The search for Elsbeth (who is also Ciarans kin) leads them into a dangerous masquerade and eventually into the enemys lair. Hero and Ciaran find that their mutual desire for vengeance has brought them a powerful love.
Ms. Wilhelm evokes the Highlands in all its glory. Readers will thoroughly enjoy the adventures, the delightful characters and the emerging love between Ciaran and Hero. SENSUAL (May, 325 pp., $5.99)