Warrior of the Isles
By Debbie Mazzuca
Release Date: May 1, 2011
Aidan MacLeod is a stong leader, dedicated to the protection and well-being of his clan and, in particular, to his younger half-brother, Lachlan. But, while Aidan loves his brother fiercely and would do anything to protect him, he cannot bring himself to accept that part of Lachlan that has brought so much tragedy into their lives; the Fae blood that flows through Lachlan's veins thanks to their mother's betrayal.
Sweet, innocent and likeable but totally lacking the skills necessary to assume leadership of her people, Princess Syrena is shocked when, following her father's death, the Angels task her with two missions critical to the future of her people: discover who murdered her father and go to the mortal world of the Scottish Highlands to find Lachlan MacLeod, the half-brother she never knew she had, and bring him home to The Enchanted Isles. Syrena is confident that the mission to retrieve Lachlan will be easily accomplished, freeing her to return home before the chaos and power struggles caused by her father's death spiral out of control but she never anticipates Lachlan's less than enthusiastic response to the news that he has a sister nor his refusal to accept that part of him that is Fae and she certainly couldn't have anticipated his strong, handsome, stubborn, mortal half-brother, Aidan nor her unexpected attraction to him.
Following heartrending betrayals by both his mother and his former fiancee, Aidan has no interest in women other than for sport but when he happens upon a beautiful woman in the woods fiercely protecting the deer that was to have been his clan's meal, he finds himself unexpectedly charmed. Believing her to be a victim of a kidnapping by Lowlanders who has lost her memory, he takes Syrena home, determined to protect her until her family is found. He has no idea that her purpose there is to spirit his brother away nor that she is Fae, nor that she will fill his heart with joy and, unaware of his hatred for her people, it never occurs to Syrena to enlighten him until it's much too late.
Ms. Mazzuca brings medieval Scotland to life in this sometimes humorous, sometimes heartbreaking, always engaging page-turner. Aidan and Syrena's journey is not an easy one, as befits these harsh times. They both have much to learn and need time to evolve individually before they can grow old together. Thankfully, the author gives them that time, which makes their happy ending, when it finally arrives, all the more appreciated.
Rounding out the story is a rich cast of secondary characters who add dimension, humor, intrigue and adventure to the mix. I enjoyed seeing beloved characters from Mazzuca's first book, Lord of the Isles, and meeting new ones who I have high hopes of seeing again in future books, especially Lachlan and Evangeline.
If you enjoy medieval romance that's filled with heart-stopping adventure, sizzling sensuality and deep emotion along with a sprinkling of fantasy and the danger of dark magick that threatens not only our characters' happiness but their very lives, I encourage you to give Warrior of the Isles a try. And, if you're a fan of time travel, don't miss Mazzuca's first book, Lord of the Isles. You can read my review of that book here.
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