Continuing in the excellent tradition of her previous Scottish novels, McCarty builds a wonderful romance set at a time when daughters were viewed as chattel, a means for political or financial gain. She presents an unforgettable tale of a blossoming romance and passion that defies societal views and brings an era to life.
Later, en route to her uncle's castle, Elizabeth's coach is attacked by outlaws. Patrick realizes she's in the carriage and acts as her savior, escorting her to her destination. But she doesn't realize that he's a member of the outlawed MacGregor clan. Patrick's relationship with Elizabeth grows from one of respect to deep and everlasting love. Even after Elizabeth learns his identity, she's willing to marry him in a handfast ceremony. When he's captured, the romance and excitement reach a crescendo as Elizabeth must take control of her destiny and Patrick. (BALLANTINE, Mar., 364 pp., $6.99)