Bits 'n Bobs Author Blog
From the battlefield of Culloden Moor come the stories of 79 restless ghosts who have been given a chance to do an heroic act, freeing them of their tragic existence in their ghostly realm.
Written by several different authors, each ghost will get their own tale in this 80 book series. Please read The Gathering by LL Muir first to avoid confusion.
My first book in this series, Adam, is now available for pre-order (releases Oct 29) from Amazon.
Welcome to a new round of Medieval Monday 2015!
Today I am spotlighting my newest book, The Highlander's Outlaw Bride, set in 14th century Scotland. It is the 4th book in The Highlander's Bride series.
Thrust into the role of laird upon his father's unexpected death, Connor MacLaurey returns home to find his cousin has usurped his lands and title. Furthermore, his betrothed--a lass he barely knows and certainly did not agree to marry--is hunted by the sheriff, accused of stealing cattle. His plan is to petition the king for clemency for the foolish chit, break the betrothal, and take his castle back from his treacherous cousin. Marriage is not in his plans.
Brianna Douglas has no desire for marriage. Widowed young, berated daily for failing to give her first husband a child, and sent home in subsequent disgrace, she devotes her life to holding her family's land for her young brother as their sotted father drowns his sorrow in whisky over her mother's death. Raiders have hit her clan hard, and to save them, she finds herself betrothed to Laird MacLaurey's absent son to seal a pact of protection with the MacLaurey clan.
Forced into a marriage neither wants, it will take a king's edict and sacrifice from both to discover what love means. But can they accept their losses and learn from their mistakes before Brianna marries another?
Her step quickened and she fled the room to the stairway leading to her chamber. An iron grip on her arm yanked her to a stop and she whirled to face him, his expression black with fury.
“Let go of me!” she hissed angrily.
Conn released her arm, but did not move away. “What do ye think ye are about? Are ye dead set on being hanged?”
“The king pardoned me.”
“Aye, for reiving. Disobedience to the king is treason and will also get ye hanged.”
Brianna eyed him narrowly, unable to quell her toe as it tapped the stone floor impatiently. “I dinnae want to marry.”
“Well, there will be none to wed ye from the gallows.” He loomed over her, his expression darker still. “And I could have refused ye for yer lack of respect.”
“Lack of respect? I said naught that is not on any other’s tongue, m’laird.”
“Ye know naught of me or my past year in France.”
“Enough to know I dinnae want to be shackled to a skirt-chaser like yerself. I dinnae want such disrespect in my marriage, either!”
Conn exhaled a long breath. “Why are ye so against this marriage?”
“Are ye daft? What is there to recommend it?”
“Have stripped my clan of their wealth.”
“Yer dowry is of no importance to me. However, I do find myself in need of an heir.”
Furious, Brianna tossed her head. “Ye would do better to find a woman ye know will give ye one. I have no desire to be that woman.”
“Is that so?” The soft tone of his voice did not match the fire she saw in his eyes. She shook off the frisson of longing before it woke the passion his voice ignited in her, and did not flinch as she spoke the lie.
* * *
Buy link: http://www.amzn.com/B00UD9JMBQ
My next book, book 4 in The Highlander's Bride Series, is due out in March of this year. The Highlander's Outlaw Bride is the story of Connor MacLaurey (you can find the first part of his story in The Highlander's Tempestuous Bride) and Brianna Douglas.
Thrust into the role of laird at his father's unexpected death, Conn returns home from a trip abroad to find his cousin has usurped his title, and his betrothed--a young woman he barely knows and certainly did not agree to marry--is hunted by the sheriff, accused of stealing cattle. His immediate plan is to petition the king for clemency for the stupid chit, break the betrothal, and get his castle back from his treacherous cousin. Marriage is definitely not in his plans.
Brianna Douglas has no use for men. Widowed young, daily berated for failing to give her husband a child, and sent home in subsequent disgrace, she has devoted her life to holding her family's land for her young brother as her father drinks away his sorrow at her mother's death. Raiders have hit her clan hard, and to save them, she is forced into a betrothal with Laird MacLaurey's son for protection.
It will take a king's edict and sacrifice from each to remind them what love means. But can they accept their losses and learn from their mistakes before Brianna marries another?
Today’s treat is an interview with Gilda Macrory, the heroine in The Highlander’s Tempestuous Bride. I caught her out picking berries, but she has agreed to chat for a bit.
CMR: Thank you for letting me interrupt your berry-picking, Gilda! What a lovely name!
Gilda: (smiles) I thank ye. It means ‘gift of God’.
CMR: Oh, that is very nice. Can you tell me a bit about your life at Scaurness Castle?
Gilda: (shrugs) Och, `tis not so much unlike another lass anywhere else. I have chores and two younger brothers to look after, though they plague me sore. And sometimes I care for my wee baby sister.
CMR: But a castle is scarcely a crofter’s hut, right?
Gilda: I see yer point, though there are many more people who work and live in a castle. It can be difficult to have a bit of privacy, even in such a large place.
CMR: I suppose you need privacy from your brothers?
Gilda: (fists a hand on one hip) Aye! They are a pair of wee louns! Always pulling pranks on me since our brother Niall left to foster. I am too old for such nonsense. Punishment doesnae work with them for long.
CMR: What happens when they get caught?
Gilda: They must first apologize, then they usually must clean my horse’s stall for a fortnight. At least it works off a wee bit of their energy for a few days.
CMR: Let’s talk about you as a young child. What do you remember about your da, the laird, when he first came to Scaurness?
Gilda: He isnae my true da, though he adopted me when he wed my ma. I was four summers at the time. The first time we met, I had disobeyed my Auntie Tavia and waded into the water at the beach looking for sea shells. The tide was coming in and I found myself stranded on a rock, the waves crashing about me.
CMR: Oh, my! What happened?
Gilda: Like a braw hero, he strode through the water to me and picked me up. I had also lost my shoes, and he tweaked my toes and called me a mermaid.
CMR: Thank goodness he saw you. Were you friends after that?
Gilda: I was four. He was kind and dinnae scold me. I think I loved him more than ma did at that point.
CMR: Why is that?
Gilda: Och, she had been told by the king to marry Ranald, but she had known him as a lad and dinnae like him then. But Auntie Tavia says they soon fell in love. They always act as though they like each other.
CMR: Do you think you will marry for love?
Gilda: (bites her lip) As the laird’s daughter, I shall marry to benefit the clan. I dinnae believe my da would ask me to marry a man I couldnae respect. Love him? I am not entirely certain what that means.
CMR: Is there a lad at the castle you like? Or a laird’s son you have an eye for?
Gilda: Nae, the lads at the castle are all boys playing at being men. However . . . (she stares off into the distance)
Gilda: Och, I am sure it is nothing. Just a lad I met when picking berries yesterday. But, he flustered me.
Gilda: He was afeared for me because he saw me cut a wolf loose from a trap and spoke a bit sharpish. Then he was kind when a storm blew up—I have been afeard of storms since I was a bairn. But he vexes me.
CMR: (hides a smile) I am sure you will work it out. Do you know who he is?
Gilda: Nae, though I was trespassing on Macraig land, so I suppose he is a Macraig. (Frowns)
CMR: Oh, is that a problem?
Gilda: Aye. The Macraigs and the Macrorys havenae been allied in many years. Though I dinnae know exactly the why of it.
CMR: It is getting late. I will let you get back to your chores. Thank you for taking a moment to talk with me. I hope you are able to follow your heart.
Gilda: I thank ye. I am duty-bound, but wish with all my heart to fall in love with the man I marry. (waves as she picks up her basket of berries)
* * *
CMR: To discover who Gilda marries and if she falls in love, pick up your copy of The Highlander’s Tempestuous Bride! Available for pre-order now at Amazon for the introductory price of $2.99 http://www.amzn.com/B00P89UHME Release date: 11/11/14
Leave a comment for a chance to win one of three ebooks (kindle) of The Highlander’s Tempestuous Bride. Winners announced here 11/12/14.
For one week only, Gilda's story, the third book in the Highlander's Bride series, is available for pre-order at Amazon.
Now on sale for $2.99 through 11/11/14.
Amazon buy link: http://www.amzn.com/B00P89UHME/
If you read The Highlander's Reluctant Bride, you have already met Riona and Ranald. You will have met Gilda, also, but as Riona's 4 year old daughter.
Ranald was sent to Scaurness Castle by the king as the old laird lay dying, his mission to protect it from marauding pirates and squabbling neighboring lairds. Along the way, he marries the old laird's daughter and adopts her child as his own. In The Highlander's Tempestuous Bride, the little mermaid he met 12 years earlier, has grown into a lovely young woman. It is now his duty to find a husband for her. As her da, he is not ready for this.
Lady Caitriona, known as Riona, is Gilda's mother. As her daughter approaches marriageable age, she is caught between the memory of the child who defined her own life as a mother nearly 17 years ago, and the love for the young woman Gilda is becoming. She wants the best for her daughter and sympathizes with her romantic heart. But when secrets from Riona's past threaten Gilda's future, she must help forge the bond that will forgive past injustices.
Ranald and Riona's story carries over into The Highlander's Tempestuous Bride in the form of a feud between the Macrory and Macraig clans. Though this book is a stand alone story, it does very well paired with The Highlander's Reluctant Bride, giving a bit more insight into Gilda's character and the fear Riona has of losing her child- again.
With the release of The Highlander's Tempestuous Bride only weeks away, today is as good a time as any to introduce you to the characters who have been in the most recent Tuesday Teaser blogs.
Gilda Macrory: At sixteen and the laird's daughter, she is aware she will marry soon to benefit her clan. But she is caught unawares by a young man who steals her heart. Though she knows he must belong to the neighboring Macraig clan who has been at odds with her clan for over fifteen years, she hopes to meet him again on the beach along the firth.
Ryan Macraig: Just returned home after a 10 year absence, he wants only to rejoin his family and learn the ways of his clan, ready to someday step into the laird's shoes. Matrimony is not on his mind. Until he meets Gilda. He sees her leaving a tiny cottage on the beach, and though he knows she is a Macrory, he believes her to be the healer's granddaughter, not the daughter of the laird. Even so, he dares defy his father and the clan feud to see her again.
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