In 1796 a carriage accident killed the Duchess of Arygll, her ladies maid and 2 four year old girls(their daughters). The bodies of the girls were not recovered. A few years later still deep in mourning over his lost, his estate near bankruptcy, The Duke of Arygll takes in a young man, a distant cousin and his heir, to raise and train in the running of the estate. The young man, Colin, a natural talent, saves the estate and makes it more prosporous than ever before. Sixteen years after the accident the Duke, has heard rumors and goes to source of them and finds a young woman of the exact age as his lost daughter Sarah and insists that she is his own daughter and takes her home. He summons Colin, now living the life of a rakehill in London, back to Scotland to help him prepare Sarah as the life of a landowning Duchess and to give her polish.
Colin arrives at the estate and is told by the Duke that he is keep his hands off Sarah or he will see to it that Colin is shunned in London. Colin begins his task. He also learns a lot about Sarah, such as she can talk to animals thru her panflute and that she does not believe herself to be the Duke's long lost or dead daughter. Colin soon realizes that the life he lived in London pales to the interest he has in Sarah. She takes to estate management the way he had when he was younger but longs for the freedom she had in the Highlands. He also learns that she believes she had been rescued by a unicorn. On evening after an argument she leaves the mansion and he follows her and finds her with the unicorn that saved her and the unicorn is dying of a broken heart. Centuries before his mate had been captured by a highlander. Sarah can touch the unicorn and see images of events and she describes to Colin what she has seen. He researches and believes he can find the missing unicorn. He sets out to do so promising that he will return before her society debut in 4 weeks.
On the evening of her society debut a man Colin had hired months before to find the real Sarah returns with the real Sarah during the ball. Chaos erupts. Colin also makes an appearance at the ball and takes Sarah to the unicorn he has found and together the go to the dying unicorn with his lost mate. The mate might be dead however as she is not breathing. Can she be saved? Will Colin finally convince Sarah that he loves her and will he accept her now that she is no longer the Duke's long lost daughter?
This report prepared by plnorth
Sonnet, Aug 2001, 6.50
In 1796 Scotland, the highwaymen chase after the carriage bearing the Duchess of Argyle, her little daughter Sarah, and their servants including another child. Trying to outrun their pursuers, the carriage goes off the side of a cliff. Everyone seems dead, but a local farming family finds a little girl wandering the moors.
In 1813, through the sale of a family ring, the Duke of Argyle hears about a feral female with an uncanny ability to talk with the animals. She is the right age and name to be his little girl Sarah. She possesses a panflute, which makes the Duke believe he found his daughter. He persuades her to accompany him to their home while asking his current heir Colin Murray to help him polish Sarah. If Sarah is the daughter of the Duke, Colin has much to lose, but that cannot stop him from losing his heart to her. She draws him into her world searching for the unicorn that she insists saved her life when she was injured during the nasty carriage incident years ago.
TO TAME A WILD HEART changes Mowgie's gender and adoptive species (from wolves to humans) while placing him in a Regency Pygmalion. The story line is exciting, amusing, and fast paced as readers observe a tale on manners sort of like The School for Scandal. Though some fans will feel the subplot involving a unicorn search is unnecessary, it is well written and adds a charming twist to the novel. Still, this is Sarah's story and she engages the audience whether she wanders the moors or the ballrooms.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner