Publisher: Ballantine Books
Publish Date: Out now
How I got this book: ARC from the publisher via Netgalley
Genevieve McInnes is locked behind the fortified walls of McHugh Keep, captive of a cruel laird who takes great pleasure in ruining her for any other man. Yet when Bowen Montgomery storms the gates on a mission of clan warfare, Genevieve finds that her spirit is bent but not broken. Still, her path toward freedom remains uncertain. Unable to bear the shame of returning to a family that believes her dead or to abandon others at the keep to an imposing new laird, Genevieve opts for the peaceful life of an abbess. But Bowen’s rugged sensuality stirs something deep inside her that longs to be awakened by his patient, gentle caress—something warm, wicked, and tempting.
Bowen seizes his enemy’s keep, unprepared for the brooding and reclusive woman who captures his heart. He’s enchanted by her fierce determination, her unusual beauty, and her quiet, unfailing strength. But wooing her will take more than a seasoned seducer’s skill. For loving Genevieve, he discovers, means giving her back the freedom that was stolen from her—even if it means losing her forever.
This blurb came from the author’s website.
I read the first of Banks’ McCabe Trilogy, her earlier Highlander series and enjoyed it but then real life decided to interfere so I never picked up books 2 and three. So when we received the opportunity to participate in her blog tour for Higherlander Most Wanted I decided I would enjoy giving her second Highlander series a try and once again I found myself enjoying it. Highlander Most Wanted takes place right after the events of Never Seduce a Scott so It would help to understand some of the tension and back story if you read that one first but you will sill get the gist of the initial actions and reactions if you do not.
Genevieve had a pretty miserable life for the past few years. She was captured and abused by a cruel sadistic man who decided that he was going to have her and when she rebuffed him decided to make it so one else would ever want her. She was also mistreated by most of the members of his Clan based on her status there and that she was a very convenient scapegoat. In spite of all of her mistreatment when she found out that the Laird and most of his men fled the keep before the combined Montgomery and Armstrong army arrived, she tried to rally those who remained to be strong and see what they could do to survive. Genevieve was scarred physically, mentally, and emotionally from her treatment by the McHughs which left a lasting impression on her behavior towards men and her hopes for her future. She did annoy me somewhat with her extremely forgiving nature towards the members of the McHugh clan and how they continued to treat her but she also did not hesitate to go after those who turned traitor. I just wish that once Bowen Montgomery had taken control that she stood up for herself against the others.
Bowen was really put in a difficult situation. His simple mission to eliminate the McHugh Laird, his son, and seize the keep became rather complex. He was forced to work with and depend on the Armstrongs who only recently transitioned from deadly enemies to reluctant allies. He had to seize and manage the McHugh Keep until the Montgomery and Armstrong Lairds decided what to do with it and the surrounding lands. He had to deal with the threat of returning McHughs and traitors who remained in the keep. He also had to determine what to do with Genevieve, her past, her future, and his desire for her. I liked how he was able to think through things and see past his immediate kneejerk reaction to determine the facts behind an event. He also had the ability to make tough decisions for the short term in an attempt to make the long term better. One of my favorite scenes was when Genevieve was attacked by a McHugh and he not only killed the man but also decided to become her champion.
Overall, I enjoyed watching Genevieve heal and Bowen lose some of his anger. I also liked seeing the Montgomerys and Armstrongs grow closer together as they dealt with mutual enemies. I was also very happy with the ending situation for Genevieve so she did not have to stay amongst the remnants of the McHughs. I also really liked how Bowen continued to prove his support to Genevieve and to give her choices for her future. I enjoyed the interactions between the main characters in Highlander Most Wanted but I did get a little tired of the mob mentality amongst the supporting cast. They were very eager to continue mistreating Genevieve and blaming her for their situation. In my opinion most of them should have been kicked out of the keep and left to fend for themselves instead of being given multiple chances. I look forward to seeing what happens to the reminder of the Montegomery and Armstrong siblings.
I give Highlander Most Wanted a B