ARC Book Review-Highland Thief by Alyson McLayne

ARC Book Review-Highland Thief by Alyson McLayne

I received this book for free from Sourcebooks Casablanca in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

ARC Book Review-Highland Thief by Alyson McLayneHighland Thief by Alyson McLayne
Also in this series: Highland Promise, Highland Conquest , Highland Betrayal , Highland Captive
Series: The Sons of Gregor MacLeod #5
Published by Sourcebooks Casablanca on August 24, 2021
Genres: Historical Romance, Medieval Era, Scottish Highlands
Pages: 384
Format: eARC
Source: Sourcebooks Casablanca
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When a Highland laird makes a promise, nothing can stand in his way...
No one ever accused Kerr Macalister of being a nice man. Everyone would agree, however, that when he makes up his mind about something, no one will change it. Which is why everyone knows Isobel MacKinnon will end up his wife.
Isobel spent most of her childhood in love with the tall, dark, and deadly sexy Scot. It wasn't until she was fifteen and failed to entice Kerr into kissing her, that things turned sour. Now, Kerr is the one trying to entice her.
But Isobel knows how to hold a grudge and won't be swayed unless he proves his love. So she tricks him into believing she's eloping with another man. Kerr responds by kidnapping her to a remote cabin in the Highlands where both love and danger lurk...
Will this Highlander's fate be to finally have the woman of his dreams?

I will say that I have been a fan of this author and this beloved series since the very beginning with “Highland Promise” when I fell in love with all of these brothers and their adopted father that brought them all together “Gregor” (which seriously please please Alyson give us his story even if its a novella) Highland Thief I am assuming is the finale of the series and I was utterly captivated and drawn into the story pretty quickly. And while it’s not one of my favorites, it definitely somehow won my heart when in the beginning I wanted to strangle a certain character. The talent of this author never ceases to surprise me and this story was a pure delight on every page.

Highland Thief begins by taking us back to time to the Scottish Highlands to Kerr MacAlister and his brothers coming home from battle, and this time he came close to losing his life and he is determined more than ever to claim Isobel as his wife. But the battle of his life….will be winning her trust and heart. Isobel doesn’t trust easily, and she knows that as a woman there isn’t much she can do, her abilities lie in a different nature than those of her sisters. She plays tricks on those that harm others whether it’s intentional or not, and in her mind it brings balance to the clan, and is a sort of cleansing for all involved. She seems to stay one step ahead of everyone except one infuriating Scot….Kerr. He always sees the traps that she sets and she can never get one above him and she is determined more than ever to make it certain. Isobel is crafty and cunning and beautiful, and Kerr has loved her for a long while. But he knows receiving her gift of love in return will not be an easy task for him to accomplish and it might take a kidnapping, some battles, and a lady wolf to prove his devotion to his lovely lass.

Highland Thief was quite an entertaining read, and I had so much fun with this one here. I will be honest in that I was supremely anxious about the heroine. I was careful not to read reviews because I wanted to go in with a clean palette and zero expectations. I wasn’t sure how easy this book would become to be fully invested in, but why oh why did I lose faith in this author?? Because on the FIRST page I was sucked straight into the story and I loved every part of that experience. I can tell you that I loved how this author crafts her storytelling and I was hooked. Now I first want to talk about my issues with the book, which is really only one issue. The heroine. *sigh* I swear more and more I am seeing heroines that just aren’t my cup of tea and are problematic. And this heroine was a struggle for me to truly enjoy. I do not like “bully” heroines in romance. And while I found her contribution to the clan quite inventive, it just rubbed me the wrong way. And what she was going to do to her own BROTHER?? Man if it wasn’t for the talent of this author and knowing she would give me a win, I am not sure I could have kept going on with the story but alas….this author won my heart despite my protests. I had no chance haha This author definitely knows how to write a captivating read. And while it was written to suit those with modern sensibilities, it was also done with subtlety so it felt more genuine in many ways.

I want to hear again that you missed me when I was gone. That you worried about me–like you admitted to before. That you were happy to see me arrive back safe and sound. That when I kissed your neck today, your knees grew weak and shivers ran up your spine. That when we spar, or you try to trick me and dump me in a pile of dung, you feel more alive than at any other time during your day. That when you see my hands, or my body, or my lips, you think about them touching your hands, and your body, and your lips. When you see me, Isobel, that you know I really see you too.

Highland Thief is an adventure, with a bit of a road trip adventure (kinda) and some sexy bantering, fun laughs and some sword fighting between some Scots and a Welsh with a wolf…maybe he will be getting a story. *crossing fingers* I actually had a blast with the way that the plot developed in this story and I just couldn’t get enough of seeing where this author was taking me in this book. Now, this does have some elements of the unrequited love trope, this is from the heroine. She is very resistant to the hero even though she feels the underlying chemistry between them. I think much of her resistance comes from issues she has with herself and a lack of trust in the male species. But as their chemistry builds, and they have to work together to survive, she sees Kerr as a male worthy of her trust and love. And seeing this transition was so beautiful to see. I found it utterly delightful seeing her change toward Kerr. It was slow going in some ways, but I did become in love with the heroine even though I struggled with aspects of her character in the beginning. I see her as a woman worthy of Kerr and willing to stand by his side and fight for him and their love and she won my heart in that fierce loyalty to him.

Overall I found Highland Thief to be a sensation thrill of twists and turns that kept me guessing, this author had me turning in circles wondering what the next move would be, I was stunned by the way that this author worked this story, Highland Thief is a book that will warm your heart, excite your senses and offer all the heart and beauty of the highlands!

About Alyson McLayne

Alyson McLayne is a mom of twins and an award-winning writer of contemporary, historical and paranormal romance. She’s also a dog lover and cat servant with a serious stash of dark chocolate. After getting her degree in theater at the University of Alberta, she promptly moved to the West Coast of Canada where she worked in film for several years and met her prop master husband.

Alyson has been nominated for several Romance Writers of America contests, including The Golden Heart, The Golden Pen, The Orange Rose, Great Expectations, The Molly’s and The Winter Rose.

Her debut historical romance, Highland Promise, will be published by Sourcebooks in October, 2017. Highland Promise is the first of five books in The Sons of Gregor MacLeod series. Highland Conquest will come out in February, 2018.

Alyson and her family reside in Vancouver with their sweet but troublesome chocolate lab puppy named Jasper.

3 thoughts on “ARC Book Review-Highland Thief by Alyson McLayne

  1. It’s been sooo long since I’ve read a Highlander romance but this one is definitely piquing my interest. I feel like the heroine might be one that I don’t gel with, but I’m still curious. And that quote you shared… swoon! Would you say the series must be read in order, or could I jump right into this one?

    1. I highly recommend if you enjoy highlander romance, you need this author in your life. I would actually recommend reading this series in order. But it just depends if you catch on to outer details easily or not. But there are familial connections that will make it easier if you read these books in order.

  2. Hmm, I have no history with the author so my knee-jerk reaction to the blurb and your description of the heroine’s methods of playing her own version of judge, jury, and executioner doesn’t set well. When reputation was a big deal back then, I find it odd that she chose a fake elopement as her scheme. Oh well, I can see that you really loved the story, the writing and so much about this one. Hope you get your novella about the adopted dad. 🙂

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