Highlander Untamed by Monica McCartyHighlander Untamed (MacLeods of Skye Trilogy, #1) by Monica McCarty
Published by Ballantine on July 31st 2007
Genres: Romance
Pages: 382
Source: Purchased: ebook

Rory MacLeod is a bold and powerful Highland Chief with only one allegiance–to his clan. He vows revenge against the rival MacDonald clan, though duty demands a handfast marriage to Isabel MacDonald–a bride he does not want and has no intention of keeping. But Rory couldn’t have anticipated the captivating woman who challenges his steely control, and unleashes the untamed passion simmering beneath his fierce exterior.

Blessed with incomparable beauty, Isabel MacDonald is prepared to use every means possible–including seduction–to uncover her husband’s most guarded secrets. Instead Rory awakens Isabel’s deepest desires and her sweetest fantasies. Now Isabel has found the happiness she’s always dreamed of with the very man she must betray, and discovers that passion can be far more dangerous than revenge.

I read this one for the “Man in a Kilt” bingo square. I may have read it before – I honestly couldn’t say because I binged on Monica McCarty books a couple of years ago and they are all very formulaic, so I can’t necessarily identify it by the story.

It is enjoyable enough, such as it is. It is a fairly steamy – I’d say about a 7 on the steam scale (out of 10). There are graphic but not clinical descriptions of the sexual encounters between H & h. One of the problems with romance – for me at least – is that there are a limited number of ways to describe sex, so I get bored with sex scenes. McCarty’s are not worthy of eyerolling, but they are boring and repetitive. I skim.

The formula for a McCarty Highlander goes something like this: Hero and heroine are thrown together. There is some sort of obstacle that keeps them separated – warring clans, arranged marriage that one or both of them is angry about, kidnapping, whatever. They are incredibly attracted to one another because the heroine is so beautiful that the Hero gets an erection if she comes within four feet of him. This seems both unlikely and uncomfortable, but hey, I’m not responsible for this bit of silliness. They spat with one another and finally succumb to the mutual attraction. No matter where they are or what is going on – fleeing from enemies who want to kill you? Just released from having been captured with terrible injuries? These things do not stand in the way of the virginal heroine enjoying multiple orgasms the first time she has sex.* The obstacles are dealt with, H & h marry, H has been utterly conquered by love, and a bairn soon follows.

Anyway, Highlander Untamed is fine. It is plenty enjoyable if you keep your expectations moderate. There really isn’t much else for me to say about it.

*Yes, this is both unbelievable and preposterous. If you are looking for realistic treatment of relationships, I have other suggestions for you!