Overall review: 3.5 / 5
This was my first chance to read a book through NetGalley in a long while...and I appreciate that opportunity. As always though, I will give my honest thoughts here.
The story surrounds a young widow, Daisy, escaping to Scotland with her young son - the new Earl due to his father's death. Daisy is a bit disenchanted of love and romance after this marriage, made even worse when she learns a condition of her husband's will was that she marry within a year. After receiving a letter from her childhood love, she takes off for Scotland to try to escape the pressure and in hopes he will return in time.
Englishmen aren't well regarded in Scotland at the time, and Daisy's neighbor, Cailean, is not exactly inclined to be friendly. That, of course, changes over time (otherwise how would we have a hero for our heroine here). What seems like it would have been a simple take of overcoming differences and two people coming together takes on a twist when the childhood love appears in Scotland, and may have ulterior motives.
This is one of the books where the further removed I am from reading it, I find myself thinking about it and enjoying it almost more after the fact than when I was initially reading it. It stuck with me, rolling around in my head for the first few days after I completed the read, and I think that says good things about the story and characters overall.
I found it a bit slow to get started...and maybe that was part of my initial issues. I wanted to like the characters, but instead found myself at times wanting to give them a swift kick. Sometimes a little too much self-inflicted angst maybe, or just too much of a self-imposed sense of duty might be more fair. But either way, they grew on me, the story grew on me, and I eventually got to a point where I couldn't put it down and had to sit and finish it (which of course meant I had to do it late at night so there were no interruptions!). While I can't say this was one of my favorite Julia London books, I do enjoy her characters and how she develops them. She also includes some interesting secondary characters and tells a strong story. Worth the read, and if you find yourself needing to put it down for a bit, be sure to pick it back up and keep going.