Kiss of the Highlander - Karen Marie Moning 1 1/2 stars- Didn't like enough to round up...

Hmmm, so after seeing the rating and reading some of the reviews I seem to be in the minority regarding my feelings on this book. For me, this book was a case of where the story line had potential, but the execution was poor.

Part of the problem for me was that I couldn’t stand either of the protagonists. Gwen is supposed to be an intelligent woman. She was a former physics student working on a critical theory, when she reached a point and decided to rebel against her teachings and parents. She ends up striking on her own and ends up working as an agent at an insurance agency, of all places. I found this surprising, because if she was so smart she could have easily found herself a more prestigious job. However, as I read on it because much less surprising because Gwen is freaking clueless in other areas not pertaining to math and science. For example, she’s on a quest to find herself a man to “pick her cherry”. Seriously?! Those are her words, not mine. “Cherry picker” was a term that she kept using over and over. She also brought herself special underwear…a thong with silhouetted black kitties for the occasion. I mean…fucking seriously?! All Gwen kept going on about was how she was a virgin at 25 years old. Instead of saying she was lonely in this world, all that Moning concentrated on was that this heroine needed to get laid. Thanks for setting us women back. >:(

The hero, Drustan, wasn’t much better. He was an arrogant, horny toad. All he thought about was “tupping” which, of course, made him perfect for Gwen. For the first half of the book I seriously thought my contacts were going to get stuck in my eyes with the amount of eye rolling this story was producing. At that point I was at a one star and thisclose to putting the book down, but I’m participating in a challenge so I kept on reading.

Things got a little better in the second half, but not by much. The story was a little better and a little more interesting, despite all the cheesiness, clichés and eye rolling I was still doing. The protagonists never really grew on me, but I did enjoy learning about the MacKelter clan’s background. Drustan’s family was interesting and I enjoyed the interactions between the characters.

Romance wise this story was a case of lust turned to insta-love. Other than their levels of intelligence and their mutual loneliness the pair didn’t have much else in common. Drustan was picking Gwen’s cherry by the 3rd day of them meeting and automatically they were in love, because that’s what readers were told…not shown. Both are thrown back in time where there is a month of some avoidance, then a brief getting-to-know-you period before the pair jumps back into bed and profess their love once again. Gwen and Drustan’s relationship came down to tupping, which pretty much ruined the romantic part of the story. Because really the ending could have been way more romantic had this not been the case.

This is the 4th book by Moning I’ve read (I’ve only read her Highlander series) and I must say this one was bottom of the barrel when it came to writing. In the other three books, the Highlanders pretty much spoke English with a “doona” thrown in to remind us they were Scottish. I didn’t mind this so much, because if you can’t reproduce the Scottish accent in print then please don’t. In this one, Moning attempted to make her hero and his Scottish counterparts more authentic. Major fail. I found it annoying to read. When the characters decided to get all Scottish they threw in a “mayhap” or “perchance” or worse…a “By Amergin!”…who the fuck is Amergin, by the way?

Anyway, so as you can tell from this slightly ranty review I didn’t care much for this installment in the series. I will be continuing though, because Dageus seems like an interesting hero and besides, I own books 6 and 7. I can’t skip or else my reading OCD alarm bells get set off. Can’t have that! :P