I gave 4 stars because I really like the principal characters, both of them. I like their interactions and how they are with each other. This is a couple that I enjoy reading about. Hero Ranulf is a highlander but has to work with English laws and customs. He stands by his tranditions but is aware that some highland things just won't cut it in the English society. He is not a jerk. He is protective of those he loves, his brothers, his sister, his people and eventually, the heroine, Charlotte.
That being said, it is a book with quite a few regrets. For picky readers, this is going to be a almost 3 stars book, at best. By that I mean, if you want every corner turned, every worthy angle examined, every opportunity exploited and sound logic you will be disappointed in this book.
A few things that had me going: what??? (may have spoilers)
1. Ranulf asked Charlotte to be his lover during his stay in London (which could be as short as 2 weeks) and Charlotte said yes???
2. Ranulf took Charlotte to his house and they had sex, her first time too, at 10am when they were supposed to be at British Musuem. Her maid is kept in the kitchen while her lady is having sex with the highlander???
3. Ranulf goes from "I want to sleep with you" to "I love you and I want to marry you" after he sleeps with Charlotte????
4. Ranulf's sister, Winnie, is a ninny!! She annoyed the crxp out of me. A 18-year-old girl who wants to have her London Season because she read about all the gowns and parties in her dead mother's journal? Then she goes off alone with her maid to London, has her older brother come after her to London and expects NO consequences? I know it is probably normal for young girls to dream about their debut. but I find her extremely childish and intolerable, in the beginning of the book. She does get better as the book progresses though.
5. Ranulf's biggest pep peeve, is that Charlotte is used to London and may not like the highlands. His English mother commited suicide to escape the life in highlands but that was never properly explored. And the book ended when Charlotte agrees to marry Ranulf and claims that she is not afraid of a life in the highlands. I think this is a gigantic wasted opportunity. The dangers of being closely related to Ranulf and how Ranulf and Charlotte settle together as a couple in the highlands, these are all potential plotlines that are left unexplored.
The entire story takes place in London, with the exception of a few pages in the beginning where Ranulf and his siblings and close friend set up the backdrop of the book: Winnie fights for her chance at a London Season, loses the fight and goes off to London alone. It is a fresh perspective on the usual highlander stories. As I said in the beginning, I enjoyed reading Ranulf and Charlotte's story immensely because I really like both of them and how they are together as a couple. The story however, leaves much to be desired. I am giving 4 stars for my reading experience, because I felt emotionally connected to Ranulf and Charlotte. Readers who ask more than being emotionally connected to the characters, you may be disappointed.