Guardians of the Targe
Author: Laurin Wittig
Review Rating: Five Stars
Reviewer: Linda Hays-Gibbs
Genre: Historical Fictional Romance
Excitement in the Scottish Highlands
Nicholas fitz Hugh is an unlikely hero for he is King Edwards most trusted assassin and spy. He believes in no one but himself and certainly not in love. He is half Scot and the other half is an English Lord's illegitimate son.
His father beat him and his mother could not stand to look at him for he looked like the man who raped her. He was never loved, so he turns to spying for the king for money and power.
He fought hard for his place by the king and he thinks nothing of killing and stealing for his king. He is sent to steal the Highland Targe, which he believes has no power. He thinks it is just a myth made up by superstitious barbarians. His friend and fellow assassin Archie is to help him gain this relic for his king. He leaves determined to do as his king bids him. He is to meet Archie, another spy there. He travels to Dunlairig castle in the Scottish Highlands where he heard the McAlpins have this relic.
Rowan McGregor is niece to Elspet McAlpine and cousin to Scotia and Jeanette. She was raised with her cousins after her parents were both killed. Elspet and her husband Kenneth treat her like their own daughters. She was raised accepted and loved.
The eldest daughter Jeanette is supposed to be the new Guardian of the Targe after her mother dies but things don't always go as planned.
Nicholas scouts the castle and sees a tryst by Scotia and a village lad. He watches as Rowan comes to fetch Scotia but Scotia slaps her and a rock slide almost kills them. Nicholas saves them. They do not trust strangers but Nicholas is determined to win them but still do what his king has commanded.
It is a great love story and a take of betrayal and magic. It was a real page turner for me. I was lost in the Highlands of Scotland and didn't want to leave.
I can't wait till I read the next book. I hope the vengeance King Edward seeks doesn't hurt theses lovely characters but I yearn to hear more from them.
Rowan was so determined and loyal and innocent. As we're her cousins. Nicholas was a different kind of fellow with unbelief and greed in his heart until he sees Rowan.
Even the minor characters in this book were very endearing. I loved Duncan and his practicality. I cared for Uilliam, his bushy eyebrows and his brute strength. All the people of the Highlands were fiercely loyal and smart in this tale.
It was a delight to read this exciting tale. I couldn't put it down. If you believe in the magic of Scotland, you must read this too.