Tuesday, August 23, 2011

My "Almost" Encounter with Diana Gabaldon

So.....have you ever kicked yourself in the ass because you didn't do something you should have done? Well, is my ass feeling really sore!! Those of you who know me understand my obsessional-type love with the Outlander series and it's extremely talented author, Diana Gabaldon. I devoured her seven gigantic novels, savouring, memorizing and recording many of her humourous and touching lines of prose. I fell madly in love with Jamie Fraser, her hero, a man no other author has been able to best, at least not in any of my subsequent readings. To my great joy, Diana Gabaldon made it to Canada. Yes, on August 14th, she came to a little town called FERGUS in Ontario, about 2 hours from my home in Hamilton. There is a HUGE Scottish festival in Fergus every summer, and Diana often frequents this venue, reading excerpts from her books and talking about Scottish genealogy. I had planned on going with one of my best friends, Heather, a girl I had introduced to the Outlander series who too became obsessed. However, the forecast called for heavy rain (and the festival is entirely outdoors) and I was in a funky, depressed kind of mood the night before and didn't feel like driving for two hours......I know......LAME EXCUSES! The bottom line is, I missed meeting my favourite author of all time, my hero, my idol!! I know, I am an idiot! Anyways, Heather went, the true fan that she is (that's her in the pic with Diana). Diana read excerpts from the next book....so very exciting!!! And she related that "The Scottish Prisoner" will be out THIS FALL! Jamie Fraser is in this book and you don't have to have read the Outlander series to enjoy this tale. Needless to say, I am waiting with bated breath. If I could do it all over, I would definitely make the road trip. All I can say is, maybe next summer!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Book Review for "Tamed by a Highlander" by Paula Quinn

I truly believe that words are the gateway to a woman's heart and soul. I can only imagine the filling of a woman's heart as her true love whispers these words to her.
"Ye're so fine, Mairi MacGregor. Ye lay waste to my heart and restore my soul."
Or these words as he trails wet kisses down her neck.
"Ye're mine, Mairi." He vowed, kissing her again. "Ye will always be mine."
Or these words as he finally admits his regrets for having left her.
"I was a bloody fool fer leaving ye. Ye are my stars, my sun, my world. I love ye."
And finally, how can any female not melt into a pool of love at hearing these words of true adoration.
"Mairi", he said more softly, closer to the door. "I have loved ye all my life. I see yer face at the dawning of each new sunrise and in the fiery stars at night. I hear yer laughter in the tinkling of cups, the crack of yer tongue in the thunder. I have thought of ye in battle and it kept me alive, determined to be with ye again. And now that I am, I am haunted by yer tears."

Connor Grant has a gift. His words wash over you like a cool breeze on a hot summer night, caressing you, captivating you. He had me at "hello". Once Connor decided to tell Mairi MacGregor what was in his heart, she was putty in his hands, his words melting her resolve on the spot. Her sharp tongue and fierce loyalty to her kin and King were traits Connor adored, along with her long dark locks and natural Scottish beauty. He wanted her back. He had never stopped loving her and he wasn't about to let anything keep her from him again. Not his service to the Catholic King, not a jealous man, not even the threat of war.

I loved this book. Having read the previous stories in the series, I was well acquainted with the other characters, and I was happy to embrace them like family members I hadn't seen in years. You could feel the sparks flying between the hero and heroine. There was humour, passion, deceit and betrayal, all of it encompassed in a tale of battles between England and her surrounding countries, between Catholics and Protestants and between Englishmen and Highlanders. I cannot wait for the next book in this series which focuses on Mairi's brother Colin, a fierce and cunning warrior himself. I am sure this brave Highlander will envelop me with his words as well.
I received an advanced copy of this book via NetGalley, courtesy of the publisher.

"Tamed by a Highlander" is book #6 in the 2011 Highlander Reading Challenge.
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