Berkley, May 2004
In 1307 Scotland, the Munroe brothers fight on the side of King Robert the Bruce. However, a year later, the clan heir Robbie is dead and the next sibling in line Toyg knows he must marry, but prefers not to at this time. He detests even more the ballads about his bravery especially since he feels some guilt that he survived while his beloved sibling died. His father sends Toyg on a mission to deliver a message from their nearby neighbor the Ross clan to the MacDonells announcing his son's upcoming marriage to the king's sister.
Meanwhile the shrew Catriona MacLeod learns that her dad arranged for her to marry the abusive Duff MacDonal. Catriona refuses so she runs away where she meets Toyg who is delivering a message from Duff to her odious older brother. Toyg soon realizes that there is a conspiracy against the king and he is the one delivering the information. While traveling together so he can warn the monarch and she can ask for a different spouse, the war hero and the shrew fall in love, but she is a pawn in the plot against the king so is unavailable for anyone but Duff.
CHARMING THE SHREW is an enjoyable medieval Scottish romance that fans will appreciate due to the constant battle between the lead couple. The conspiracy against the king pales next to the war of words that Toyg and Catriona exchange as each one tries to trump the other. Though the suspense is secondary, historical romance readers will take pleasure following the tirades of the twosome as they trek towards their monarch with several conspirators in pursuit.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner