Today is A HIGHLAND KNIGHT TO REMEMBER's book birthday!
FROM THE BACK COVER:
In 15th century Scotland, Gyllis Campbell arrives at the Beltane festival with one thing on her mind—to win the heart of Sir Sean MacDougall once and for all. Astonishingly, Sir Sean would like nothing more than to oblige the lovely lass.
But when news of his father’s death arrives, Sean races for Dunollie Castle. Unaware of Sean’s tragedy, Gyllis departs the festival thwarted. Worse, a terrible illness strikes her down, and she’s sent to the cloisters of Ardchattan Priory for healing.
Scottish Highlands, Late Fifteenth Century
Gyllis Campbell forgot
the pain in her backside when Dunstaffnage Castle came into view. It was all
she could do not to dig in her heels, slap her riding crop against her mare’s
rump and overtake their dreary entourage. But Mother would surely admonish such
a display of unladylike exuberance.
In the castle
foreground, blue and white striped tents festooned with colorful flags flapped
in the breeze. The sight made butterflies flit about her stomach. If only she
could hop off her horse, she’d be able to walk faster than the guards leading
them. Gyllis had been looking forward to the annual Highland fete for ages. At
long last they’d arrived and the rain had stopped. It would be Beltane on the
morrow—May Day. And it couldn’t possibly rain on the opening day of the games.
Gyllis cast an
excited grin toward her sister. “What is the first thing you plan to do?”
Helen licked her
lips. “I can already smell the honeyed cryspes.”
Though only a
year younger, Helen could be incredibly dull. She even opted to wear a veil and
cover her lovely honey-colored locks, though she was a maid and within her
rights to flaunt her beautiful tresses. “Sounds delicious,” Gyllis managed a
disinterested reply. She set her sights on more interesting fare and scanned
the scene for Highland warriors. Where is
“And you?” Helen
focused on a gathering of well-armed knights ahead. No handsome lad with a head of thick dark locks among them. She
could picture Sir Sean MacDougall in her mind’s eye as if she’d seen him only
yesterday. She adored everything about the knight including his long, athletic
legs she’d admired many times when he sparred in the courtyard as one of her
brother’s Highland Enforcers. A potent and powerful man, Sir Sean’s face was as
equally rugged and handsome as his form. It had been six months since she’d
last seen him before he left to patrol the borders. But forever burned into her
memory was the way his azure eyes had stared at her from across the table
during last year’s Beltane festival. No man had ever gazed upon her with such
fervent hunger. More so, his stare had awakened a longing deep within Gyllis’s
soul that would not be forgotten.
“What will be the
first thing you’ll do, silly?” Helen asked again.
her brows. “I want to watch the games.”
“But they do not
start until the morrow.” Helen tsked her tongue. “Bless it, you are
incorrigible.” She leaned toward Gyllis. “I know what you’re doing.”
snorted. “Eoin will be here, too.”
Helen whipped her
head around so fast, she nearly fell off her mount. “Wheesht. Ma will hear
over her shoulder at her mother and younger twin sisters. Bogle’s bones, she
and the lassies would all need to find husbands soon. She had long past
attained the age of twenty. Many highborn lasses were wed by ten and six—the
same age as Alice and Marion. Yet her brother, the all-powerful and domineering
Lord of Glenorchy, frowned upon every available noble who passed through
Kilchurn Castle’s gates. Well, Gyllis had decided it was time to take matters
into her own hands, lest she end up a spinster. If her brother deemed no one
suitable to place a ring on her finger, she would follow her heart—a love
interest she had harbored for years.
commanding tone in Mother’s voice made her sit straighter. “Have you seen
I’d prefer it if my overbearing brother
remained on the borders. “Not as of yet.”
“His missive said
he would meet us at the gate.”
Gyllis eyed the
barbican and the long pathway leading to Dunstaffnage’s immense grey stone
walls. “Perhaps we shall see him when our entourage proceeds closer to the
“Can we not stop
and look at the wares first?” asked Alice, Gyllis’s youngest sister—aside from
Marion who was born moments later.
her throat. “No one will be doing any browsing at the fete until we are settled
in our rooms.”
Gyllis rolled her
eyes to the sky. “The servants will see to that. We’ll be in their way.”
said. “And how will you know where you’ll be sleeping?”
Gyllis grinned at
Helen. “You can tell us, Ma.”
children,” Mother sighed. “It shan’t take long. Together we will proceed to our
rooms and I’ll hear no further argument.”
With a wink,
Gyllis leaned toward her sister and whispered, “You’ll have to wait a wee bit
longer for those honeyed cryspes.”
“And you must put
off ogling Sir Sean.”
fluttered at the mention of his name.
She flicked her riding crop at Helen. “I’ll wager you’ll be dancing with Sir
Eoin MacGregor this eve.”
Helen grasped the
crop and yanked it from Gyllis’s hand. “You are shameless.”
“And you are
ungrateful.” Gyllis snatched the whip back. “Remember, I am the one who intends
to keep the Campbell sisters from spinsterhood.”
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Helen licked her lips. “I can already smell the honeyed cryspes.”
Though only a year younger, Helen could be incredibly dull. She even opted to wear a veil and cover her lovely honey-colored locks, though she was a maid and within her rights to flaunt her beautiful tresses. “Sounds delicious,” Gyllis managed a disinterested reply. She set her sights on more interesting fare and scanned the scene for Highland warriors. Where is he?
Enter the Goodreads Givaway - Five copies up for grabs!