by Mary Reed McCall

June 2007
ISBN: 978-0-06-117044-7
Reviewer Graphic Button Avon Books
Mass Market Paperback

Lady Elizabeth of Selkirk must protect her home and her people who are under siege by a neighboring lord who wants to take advantage of the fact that her husband is gone. It is believed Robert is dead by the hand of the English and that now her loyalties are under suspicion. It is a precarious time when King Edward is trying to secure Scotland by whatever means he deems necessary.

Sir Alexander de Ashby is a rogue in the fullest sense of the word. He is an exiled Templar knight set to hang at dawn until the miraculous occurs: he is given a stay of execution. There are conditions to his freedom, however. He is to assume the role of another man to whom he bears a remarkable resemblance. Through this charade, Alex will gain access to Dunleavy castle, a formidable stronghold, for King Edward.

Elizabeth knows something is amiss when she is greeted by the man claiming to be her husband. As soon as he kisses her those suspicions intensify. Those around her advise her to be patient and understanding toward her husband. Imprisonment and torture changes a man in any case. So it may be, but Elizabeth is unable to completely shake that niggling doubt that hovers in the back of her mind.

Alex looks enough like the deceased Lord of Dunleavy to satisfy the people. It’s going to take more work to convince his ‘wife’, Lady Elizabeth. Now he must turn up the charm to make her forget her uncertainties. With any luck she won’t realize she’s fallen under this Templar’s seduction.

In The Templar’s Seduction, Ms. McCall stayed true to her characters while bringing them through different stages of growth. Alexander believes himself to have no redeemable qualities, therefore, deserving of the punishment set forth. Meeting Elizabeth changes his life and the way he approaches it. Her goodness infiltrates the darkness in his soul and makes him want to do the right thing. When she embraces Alex after learning of his coercion by the English he is humbled by her love. If she can believe in him then he can have the courage to do so as well. The battle changes and Alex must protect Elizabeth and Dunleavy from the very ones he has aided.

The Templar Knights books just keep getting better and better. Author Mary Reed McCall is truly one of the finest storytellers today. This latest from her is not to be missed.

Reviewed in May 2007 by Rho.

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