by Cindy Vallar

April 2002
ISBN: 1-59105-034-0
Reviewer Graphic Button Novel Books Inc.

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In The Scottish Thistle we get to meet some Highlanders like you have probably never met before. Rory MacGregor is not your ordinary lass, she speaks her mind, is cunning, and cares about her family and friends. In that caring, she has become Thistle, who takes from the rich and gives to the poor, so to speak. She is also chieftain to the Clan MacGregor. The only problem is Clan MacGregor is a no name clan. They were forbidden to use their name.

His foster father, Sir Donald of Lochiel, sends Duncan Cameron of the Clan Cameron to uphold a promise he had made years before with Roryís foster father. Duncan will uphold the promise of marriage to Rory because his chief bid him to marriage her. Duncan is a warrior and also the bodyguard of Sir Donald. He protects what is his - and Rory, including her immediate family, has come under his protection and he will fight to save them.

Not only do Rory and Duncan have problems from their first meeting but she is not sure she can love Duncan, because of her past and the fact that he is a Campbell. Can she see past the old hatred to love the man that was chosen as her husband?

This story is filled with many twist and turns, not only including Rory and Duncan but everyone from the prince down to the babies. Rory and Duncan abide by what Lochiel says to a certain extent, especially Rory - she is not known for wildcat for nothing. But she does what is good for the clan.

Ms. Vallar has given us a wonderful story of love, hope, betrayal and loyalty. We get to see just how fiercely the Scots fight -including other Scots. Their loyalty is just as fierce with regards to what they believe is right, their tradition, and heritage - and donít let anyone tell them something different because they will fight to the end. Not only is this a love story between Rory and Duncan but also a love for their country, Scotland. The secondary characters, if you wish to call them that, rounds out the story and lets you see what has shaped Rory and Duncan into what they were when they met and what they became.

The Scottish Thistle is mostly based on true facts that occurred to Rory MacGregor, Duncan of Clan Cameron and Scotland. If you want to read about a love that bound two clans and learn some history of Scotland this is the book for you!

Reviewed in January 2003 by Pam.

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