Published December 10th 2013 by Rogue Phoenix Press – Add it on Goodreads
He Made Her An Offer...
Life has thrown Christel McClellan some experiences that could have devastated a less determined woman. Beautiful, self-assured and fiercely independent, she is trying to forget the loss of her stillborn child. But is the child alive?
She Couldn’t Deny...
Life is carefree for Ryder MacLaren who loves to see what is on the other side of the sunrise. Laird of Clan MacLaren, he is wealthy, handsome and happily unencumbered...until stunning Christel McClellan enters his life. When he hears her story, he believes the child she thought dead has been sold to a wealthy buyer.
Christel inhaled a long deep breath and with unsteady legs descended the long stairway to the first floor. Ryder sat in the library reading.
For the longest time, Christel stood in the doorway, wondering how to proceed. Aiden gave her a tiny push. "Go on, he's not going to bite." Ryder must have heard them. He rose and set the book on his desk a smile forming on his handsome face. "Christel?"
The moment froze in time, and as she walked toward him, everything moved in slow motion.
"I'm glad to see you're feeling better. Were you sick?"
"In a way. I..."
"Come sit down." Ryder pulled out a chair for her.
"Can you tell me what I did wrong?" Does love sickness count? "I believed that after I told you what happened you thought less of me and left." Honesty? Is it always the best course of action?
At his sides his fists clenched then loosened. "I had errands. But when I returned that evening, you were nowhere to be found."
"You put me in my room when I was sleeping. I thought you didn't want to be with me." Her stomach rolled and the lightheadedness that consumed her made her reach for the arm of a chair to steady herself. The floor beneath seemed to undulate in waves.
"There was too much scandal associated with you. I didn't want the clan to think I was using you. Your reputation is important to me. If you were found in my bed..."
"Thank you. Aiden said you sent a letter to my father for help. What do you need assistance with?"
"Finding Richy. I've heard he is in the area. I want to make sure you are protected." Ryder sat on the corner of the large desk. His gaze riveted on her.
Her emotions frayed, her heart fluttering in her chest, she smoothed the folds of her dress. "You promised you wouldn't do anything stupid."
"Leaving Richy Rathen to find you would be stupid. Christel, he wants you, perhaps needs you would be a better word and will stop at nothing to get you."
This book took more twist and turns than a moonshiner running from a revenuer. When it started out I thought "Awwww, this is going to be a simple, sweet historical romance that is going to require very little effort or emotion on my part. *yawn* Fie, on me! Fie and fiddlesticks, I say! There are some HEAVY DUTY issues running around this story. Religion, sexual assault, women's rights, are central to this book. It took a dark turn, then a darker turn, then a heartbreaking turn, then a happy turn and so on and so on. I needed Dramamine by the end of this VERY sexy and action packed story. The first of Highland Sunrise actually threw me a bit. I had to check the blurb to make sure I had the right book. Yep, the names matched, but somewhere these characters morphed into much more complicated and developed people than I expected.
There are stories, back stories, possible stories, just so many threads going on that the reader has no opportunity to put the book down, so make sure you have a good supply of time when you start Highland Sunrise, because you won't get a break until the last page. The only issue I had with Highland Sunrise was the lack of deadly vengeance. Now I understand you can't go around killing people willy nilly, but some characters just need a slow painful death. (in graphic detail) Even some of the female characters, IMHO got off WAAAAAAAY too lightly. But then again, I'm a bloodthirsty redneck, so what can you do? I can't count how many times I yelled "Oh no, they need to be beat to DEATH!" at different points in this book. In case it escaped your notice, I became heavily involved in the story.
All in all this book was a definite star and has caused my ereader to swell with the other related books I now am compelled to read. This was a fun albiet exhausting way to spend a few hours and I am definitely a fan of Christine Young. Job well done, brava.
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Born in Medford, Oregon, novelist Christine Young has lived in Oregon all of her life. After graduating from Oregon State University with a BS in science, she spent another year at Southern Oregon State University working on her teaching certificate, and a few years later received her Master's degree in secondary education and counseling. Now the long, hot days of summer provide the perfect setting for creating romance. She sold her first book, Dakota's Bride, the summer of 1998 and her second book, My Angel to Kensington. Her teaching and writing careers have intertwined with raising three children. Christine's newest venture is the creation of Rogue Phoenix Press. Christine is the founder, editor and co-owner with her husband. They live in Salem, Oregon.