March 30, 2009
Back Cover copy:
A dark, ruthless Highlander, the Black Macleod has refused his destiny. His life is revenge for the massacre of his family. His enemies' insults—that he is a man of stone—only amuse him. But Fate is impatient, and when a woman from another time dares to summon him, he cannot resist her powers—or her…

A schoolteacher by day, Tabitha Rose uses her magic to protect others by night. When the vision of a dark Highlander, bloody and burned, appears to Tabby, she knows she has been called to help him, no matter how frightening he might be. But what Tabby doesn’t expect is to be taken against her will to his dark violent time. And when evil begins to stalk her, she realizes she must fight for far more than his destiny—she must fight for her love….

Guy McLeod lost his entire family due to a feud with the MacDougalls and ever since his quest in life has been revenge on that family. He even refuses to take his vows to become a Master of Time. Blind to anything but erasing the MacDougalls from the face of the earth he goes through life a ruthless executioner who knows no mercy. But as with everything in life, every action has consequences and in Guy's case the consequences lie in his future, in the form of witch Tabitha Rose.
Tabitha is a schoolteacher during the day and at night she fights evil to save the innocents, as her family had been doing for generations. When during a visit to an exhibit at the museum, she has a vision of a bloodied Highlander desperate for her help, she unconsciously summons him to her time and that's the start of a journey toward love and redemption throughout time and space.

Tabitha is the quiet, gracious and classic one of the Rose women. She is polite and kind but beneath her proper exterior lays a woman who is powerful, strong and brave. She's been burned in love by her arrogant and macho ex-husband and decided that only non-alpha men will do for her. But she didn't count on the ultimate Alpha male Highlander from the past to sweep her of her feet.

Guy is hot-tempered, stubborn, merciless and even barbaric at times. He has a vast amount of self-confidence that can easily be confused with arrogance. His only need for women in his life is a physical one. However, he didn't count on a prim and proper woman from the future to turn his world upside down. Guy is very set in his ways and his obsession with revenge but Tabby and his feelings for her do mellow him a bit.

Both Guy and Tabby were not only great characters individually but also together they brought the intensity and sensuality I missed with Brie and Aidan in the previous book. Guy is every bit the medieval, barbarian Highlander and Tabby epitomizes the elegant, compassionate witch. Guy triggers her inner sensuality and strength and makes her want to be less inhibited.

There are a lot of characters in this book. Next to the main couple, secondary characters as Nick Forrester, Samantha Rose and Kit play very important roles in the plot. I know that Sam is the heroine of the next book in this series (DARK LOVER) and Nick and Kit are definitely main character material too. For now though I'm really looking forward to Sam Rose and Ian MacLean's story which is coming next. I had a taste of their chemistry in this book and I want more!!
And then there's Nick. The tidbits on him continued from the previous book and they are enticing and mysterious enough to make me want to know more of him, even if in this book he already had quite a big part.

With this second book in the Rose Trilogy within the Masters of Time series of which it's the fourth one, Brenda Joyce gave me a novel filled with grief, love, loyalty and thirst for vengeance. I'll start by saying that I loved this book but I have to list the lesser things first so I can end it on the high I also finished the book on. The one thing that keeps puzzling me throughout this series, even after 4 books now, is the time leaping and I keep having difficulties with the chronology. Especially without an explanation of the rules I guess this is something that will run through all the books in this series. It is something that confuses me but at the same time Brenda Joyce keeps met enticed with the time-travel and the chronology in these books because in the end she always manages to tie everything together in a great and clear way, solving all the confusing and puzzlement created before. Because of the time-leaping these are books that you should read with a clear and attentive mind, otherwise you get lost in the back and forth between past, present and future. Next to the time-leaping thing there are a few small inconsistencies, but they were so minor it didn't influence my reading pleasure.

The above being said, I must say that for me this was the best installment of this series to date. Not only did I truly like the main couple, the chemistry between them and their contradicting personalities, the various little subplots and secondary characters also pleasantly surprised me. I'm still impressed by how this book captured me and kept me guessing as to where Brenda Joyce was taking me with the utterly unpredictable plot. The end was put together excellently. It gave answers to all the questions raised and brought closure to the few loose ends that were present earlier in the plot.

In this book I learned more about the Rose women and their destinies. Every generation has a Healer, a Witch and a Slayer and each of them have their destinies set long before they are even born in this world. What's more, the world of the Masters of Time is expanded with additional knowledge about the CDA (Centre for Demonic Activities) and the HCU (Historical Crimes Unit), the ones battling evil in the present day. Consequently, the book is set substantially more in the present day compared to the previous ones.

Every once in a while I read books that send my speculative senses to a high. This was one of those books. I was speculating about future stories, prompted by tantalizing information on and dialogues between secondary characters as Nick, Jan, Kit, Sam, Ian and the mysterious Lady of An Roinn Mor. I was even speculating about the outcome of this very book and the plot. This part of the series managed to evoke that enthusiastic feeling I had when I read the very first book of it. After two slightly disappointing books Brenda Joyce pulled me right back into the world of the Masters of Time and the Rose Women with this one.

He caught her hair, using it as a leash, and twisted her head backward. Then he whirled her around, until her back hit the door. He shoved his huge thigh between hers, and Tabby moaned, throbbing wildly all over him. (...) She let him kiss her so hard he was probably drawing blood. It didn't matter. She was in a vortex, spinning toward that usually elusive brink, shaking wildly in his arms, her blood roaring in her veins, her brain. Every inch of her was on fire. Now, she clung and begged.

Rating: 8 out of 10


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On My TBR Shelf

  • Unforgivable - Laura Griffin
  • Snapped - Laura Griffin
  • Darkness at Dawn - Elizabeth Jennings
  • Sizzle and Burn - Alexis Grant
  • No Mercy - Lori Armstrong
  • Animal Magnetism - Jill Shalvis
  • Crazy for Love - Victoria Dahl
  • Kink - Saskia Walker/Sasha White
  • So Sensitive - Anne Rainey
  • Dark Taste of Rapture - Gena Showalter
  • The Darkest Secret - Gena Showalter
  • Vampire in Atlantis - Alyssa Day
  • Vampire Dragon - Annette Blair
  • Captive Spirit - Anna Windsor
  • Chosen by Blood - Virna DePaul
  • Rebel - Zoe Archer
  • Stranger - Zoe Archer
  • A Taste of Desire - Beverley Kendall
  • Mistress by Midnight - Maggie Robinson
  • To Desire a Devil - Elizabeth Hoyt
  • To Tame a Dangerous Lord - Nicole Jordan

Digital TBR Next

  • Driven - Jayne Rylon (reread)
  • Shifting Gears - Jayne Rylon
  • Beg Me - Shiloh Walker
  • Tempt Me - Shiloh Walker
  • Jazz Baby - Lorelie Brown
  • Playboy Prankster - Pamela Britton
  • Just Like That - Erin Nicholas
  • Sweet Inspiration - Penny Watson
  • Breathe - Donna Alward
  • My Gigolo - Molly Burkhart
  • Scent of Persuason - Nikki Duncan

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