Grand Central, Mar 2008, $6.99
In 1388 British sympathizer Sir Iagan Murray catches his neighbor stealing cattle that he previously stole from his prisoner Scottish supporter Sir Walter “Wat” Scott. Iagan gives Wat an alternate to hanging; he can marry his daughter Lady Margaret “Muckle-Mouth Meggie” Murray, who besides ripping off men’s skin is not pretty.
He chooses marriage more to save the lives of his loyal men, but has doubts that he made the right selection especially when he expects his betrothed to be dragged to the altar and later to kick his butt (and another part of his anatomy) when he beds her. Instead she seems elated with the marriage as Meg believes this is her time to find happiness. However, as Meg and Wat fall in love, she catches her sibling spying on her spouse for the British. Meg knew her birth family and marital family were in conflict, but never expected to be the rope pulled by each side.
Few authors do medieval romances as consistently excellent as Amanda Scott does. Her current tale brings to life the late fourteenth century near the English-Scottish border, which constantly changes. The romance is a classic gender war battle between two fully developed likable individuals, but it is the historical tidbits that anchor an era filled with betrayal, machinations, and changing loyalty that makes the great Scott’s latest offering a winner.