Captured by Desire
by Kira Morgan
Paperback: 384 pages
Available: July 27, 2010
Genre: Historical Romance
Book received from: Hachette Book Group
In 16th century Scotland, young Miss Florie Gilder runs away from her drunken foster father to find her real father and her noble heritage. Along the way, she is accused of theft, becomes a fugitive hiding in a forest, and is accidentally wounded by a handsome local huntsman. The huntsman–a Robin-Hood figure who poaches wild game from the landowner’s estate to feed the starving poor–carries the beautiful maiden to a church where she is guaranteed 40 days of sanctuary from the law. During that time, he learns her true story, falls in love with her, and helps her in her quest, at the risk of his own life. Smitten with him, she worries more for his survival. But enemies of the state are seeking to overturn the Catholic royals, while a vicious noblewoman is out to destroy Florie.
Florie Gilder is a talented goldsmith apprentice. She’s headstrong, impulsive and outspoken. I loved her determination and spunk. Her uncompromising nature and impulsiveness get her into trouble when she sets out, determined to find her real father. Granted the trouble is one huge misunderstanding but it also is the prelude to her meeting Rane MacAllister, Lord Gilbert’s huntsman.
When we first meet Rane he’s poaching on his master’s land to feed some starving crofters and he accidentally hits Florie with an arrow in the thigh. Rane is a seasoned hunter and archer. He is compassionate, honorable and protective and always helping people in need. One thing about Rane was a little annoying. There were moments he was a little full of himself and couldn’t believe a woman, Florie in this case, would have the audacity not to like him and even loathe or hit him. But I allowed his but of arrogance because of his other redeemable qualities and come on…he’s half Scottish, half Viking!
Kira Morgan’s romance is seductive and subtle. The way the romance was built up was excellent. It was gradual but in a very high sensual tension kind of way! Yet still maintaining the feel of the time-period and the fact that it’s a historical romance. I loved the well-drawn characters and the slow, beautifully build-up romance. Everything was just right. When I finally reached “the scene” I was as ready for it as Rane and Florie were after a few “love-scene interruptus” moments.
I had a few wonderful hours reading this historical romance. I loved the time-period (post Henry VIII), and enjoyed the surprising and fairly unpredictable plot, Soon it seemed clear where the plot was going and I found it very intriguing and it was also not as I was suspecting, I was close but no cigar. Small subtle pieces of historical background were threaded through the story, giving it that genuine historical vibe without being too much. I liked that because after all this is historical romance and not historical fiction. Soon I was immersed in political intrigue, selfish conniving and slow seduction and development of a romance. Things get quite heated when Rane discovers what Florie did and is under the assumption she’s a thief. This is also the point where the story considerably picks up in pace, not that it was slow-paced to begin with.
It may seem petty and I really think I missed my calling as a copy-editor but I did notice a few inconsistencies in the use of ye/yer and you/your. I am not always fond of Scottish brogue as it tends to sometimes take me out of the flow of the book and when it’s used I want consistency because if that’s not there it will definitely pull me out of the story. There’s also a lot of use of hunting metaphors, especially by Rane in relation to Florie. This could have been annoying but to my surprise it wasn’t. They really fit into the story and didn’t bother at all.
There aren’t many important secondary characters, most are walk-ons and the only ones who had a real part in the story and plot were Father Conlan and Lord and Lady Fraser. I loved Father Conan, I first disliked Lord Gilbert Frasier but his actions in the end of the book totally redeemed him and made me like him. I almost felt sorry for Lady Mavis, the villain in this story, almost…but I did like how everything got resolved at the end. It was a satisfying end to a most wonderful historical romance.
Reading CAPTURED BY DESIRE has me craving more of Kira Morgan’s work. My surprise was great when looking for information about this book (wanted to know if it was part of a series or trilogy) I discovered that Kira Morgan is a pseudonym for Sarah McKerrigan. I have 4 McKerrigan books, medieval historical romance, on the TBR pile waiting to be read and I suspect they’re not staying there long.
“With no food in your belly, lass,” he added, “ye’re likely to drink yourself into a stupor.”
“I’d think ye’d prefer that,” she muttered. “Then ye could paw me at will.”
“T’would seem to be your wont.”
“Indeed?” By the subtle crinkling of his eyes, her words appeared to entertain him. “I assure ye I’ve never pawed a lass in my life.” He tucked the costrel back into his belt. “Caressed maybe. Fondled. But pawed?”
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