Saturday, November 11, 2017

ARC Review: The Scotsman Who Saved Me by Hannah Howell

Series:     7 Brides/7 Scots #1
Pub. Date:Sept. 26, 2017
Publisher:Tantor Audio
Narrator:Justine Eyre
Length:8 hrs 35 min

Can we take a minute to appreciate this beautiful cover? It really caught my attention and had me wanting to read about this family of seven strong Scots, the MacEnroy men. I wasn't quite expecting to get a Scottish Western... but our characters have resettled in the American West so make sure you are in that mindset when you embark upon this adventure.

Iain MacEnroy is the eldest of the MacEnroy brothers, and sees himself as caretaker of the family, and most any other unfortunate soul who comes into his orbit. After being burnt out of their home in Scotland, the family is trying to make a new life in Arkansas. Though they are learning that the West is not without its own troubles and dangers, particularly when none of them can read or write, and they have sufficient honor to aid those in need. That's not to say that Iain does not have a chip on his shoulder when it comes to the aristocracy, and his rescue of a beautiful damsel will challenge his prejudice in that regard. I found Iain to be a stoic and somewhat silent hero, and there was nothing overly Scottish about him from what I remember. I was sympathetic to his tragic past, and was glad that Emily provided for something that he could focus on besides his family and fortress home.

Emily Stanton fled to America with her sister, brother-in-law and infant nephew in an attempt to hide from a greedy and grasping uncle who sought a title for himself. When that uncle sends men to kill everyone, Emily and her young nephew (Neddie) barely escape with their lives. Finding herself as Neddie's new guardian, Emily has to make quick decisions about who she can trust, what secrets to reveal, and how much trouble she is willing to bring into their rescuer's life. I liked that Emily was responsible and willing to give up her cushy life in England to take care of her family. She was genuine and friendly to most that she met, and I liked that she trusted the MacEnroy's fairly quickly. I do wish she had revealed some of her secrets earlier as it was clear that the MacEnroy's were willing to help her and didn't give a whit for stealing Neddie's inheritance or any other nefarious deeds.

The romance between Emily and Iain was somewhat of a slow burn. Iain didn't quite know how to woo a woman, so Emily didn't immediately recognize his advances as he intended them. The suspense plot and danger were give almost as much prevalence as the romance, and I enjoyed that aspect. There were several close calls that got my adrenaline going and renewed my interest in the story.

If you are a follower of the blog, you know that I just moved across country and have been tied up packing, moving and unpacking. I was listening to this audiobook as I was unpacking, so I do fear that my attention was not always as engaged as it could have been.  However, I do really like this narrator and find that she always does a satisfactory job narrating the story. She is able to differentiate between characters and has no problem with a male affectation.

I voluntarily reviewed an advanced copy of this audiobook that I received from the publisher, Tantor.

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