Thursday, November 10, 2011

Highland Sanctuary by Jennifer Hudson Taylor

It is the mid-fifteenth century and Evelina just gave birth to a daughter, much to the dismay of her husband, Devlin Broderwick. When the newborn has some kind of seizure, Devlin is convinced the child is possessed and takes her away.
Twenty years later Gavin, on his way to restore Braigh Castle and protect the new laird, comes across Evelina Boyd and her daughter Serena, who had just had another fit. The Boyds lived in a poor village nearby, known as the Village of Outcasts - the blind, the lame, those unfit for life with others not of their kind. Serena wakes to the view of the handsome Gavin before her eyes, the MacKenzie heir.
Something strange is going on in the village. A cow of one of the village people is found murdered. Then a burning hay wagon is run up against the church doors during the Sunday morning worship. And Cara, a blind lass, is attacked. It appears that someone is out to do harm to the villagers.
The laird of the castle has eyes for Serena, but then, so does Gavin. Neither of them know her secret. It seems Serena's heart is toward Gavin but her mother is more for Ian, laird of the castle. She knows Gavin will return to his own lands a some daynd she wants Serena to stay close by.
It looks as if everything might fall apart when Serena has a fit at the market. Others see her fall and writhe and begin to spread the accusation that she is demon possessed. Will the kirk condemn her and burn her at the stake? Will she and her mother lose all they managed to make of their lives?

Jennifer has done a great job writing about a misunderstood medical condition (epilepsy) in the fifteenth century. Her writing kept my interest, even thought I am a reluctant historical romance reader. I'd be willing to read her next book – it was that good.
This book is the sequel to Highland Blessing but I had not read that book and I thoroughly enjoyed this one. This book is really a complete story unto itself and can be read on its own with great satisfaction.

Keep up with Jennifer at:

Abingdon Press, 341 pages.

I received an egalley of this book from the author for the purpose of this review.

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