Jack Haines, Earl of Lambourne, is on the lam from the Prince of Wales. Jack is being implicated in a very messy scandal involving the Princess and it looks like heads are going to roll, Jack’s in particular. He is in Scotland trying to put some distance between himself and London but Jack’s luck is just not with him and he is caught. But it seems Jack has gone from the frying pan and into the fire because the only way he is going to be able to save his skin is by accepting a handfasting ceremony with Miss Elizabeth Drummond Beal. And needless to say, she is not happy to “marry” Jack.
Lizzie does not understand why her uncle is forcing her to marry Jack. She has a suitor who is on the brink of proposing. Lizzie has no time for a wealthy rake that is being sought for treason. She has a paralyzed sister to take care of and a home that is falling apart around her.
But Jack and Lizzie have to put up with the handfasting and in the process, learn that first impressions are not always the true determiner of a person’s character. Jack knows Lizzie’s uncle is up to something, the question is, what is he after? With Lizzie’s help and the help of some sincere and amusing Highland Scotsmen, Lizzie and Jack get to the bottom of their sudden marriage. But can their growing happiness last?
Highland Scandal has a lot of storylines running in and around each other. It gets to be too much at times, but Julia London has the skills to rein in her storylines and still focus on Jack and Lizzie. There is perhaps nothing really new or innovative about their characterization. Lizzie is a rather stereotypical feisty and stubborn Scotswoman. Jack is a rogue who has spent more time in bed with women than out of it. Nonetheless, I found myself enjoying their verbal sparring and watching them grow closer.
Highland Scandal is a satisfying read. Julia London does not turn the historical romance genre on its head but she provides an entertaining and fun story. Jack is a charmer and Lizzie is a determined woman. Together, they have a flourishing and passionate romance.