Sunday, March 10, 2013

New Review: Kimberleigh Caitlin’s NIGHTWYLDE – Enthralling Story of Forbidden Love in Tumultuous 18th Century Ireland

I always know when I’ve got a 5-star romance in my hands when I’m only a quarter of the way through the book and I’m back on Amazon trying to find more of the author’s work to gobble it up. Such is NIGHTWYLDE. In my search for more by “Caitlin,” I discovered the author is none other than Kimberly Cates, long known for her wonderful historical romances, particularly those involving Ireland or Irish characters. I should have recognized her writing as CROWN OF MIST and BRIAR’S ROSE are on my Best Irish Romances list.

This is a beautifully written story with a compelling hero (going on my Favorite Hero and Heroines list!) and a wonderful heroine. You will not be disappointed.

Set in Donegal, Ireland in 1718, it’s the story of wealthy English Protestant Maryssa Wylder and poor Irish Catholic Tade Kilcannon, the heir of a proud Irish family dispossessed of their title and their ancestral lands by the English. He is known to only a few as the masked patriot, the Black Falcon who raids the British to help and protect the Irish. To everyone else, handsome Tade appears as only a rakehell known for his drinking and his female conquests. He takes no woman seriously until he meets the beautiful, unloved and innocent Maryssa, who has been banished from the English court for objecting to heinous torture of a young woman.

Both are the victims of their fathers’ anger: Tade’s father is disappointed in his rakehell heir (knowing nothing about his escapades as the Black Falcon), and Maryssa’s father hates her for her mother’s supposed infidelity. In addition, Tade’s father hates Maryssa’s father for all he stole from the Kilcannons. The undercurrents of tension are rife as are the dangers swirling around the young lovers as Tade responds to the desperate longing for love he sees in Maryssa, and she responds to his tender loving and kind words, something she has never had. Tade stands as the strong defender of his people; and Maryssa, once a shy and retiring girl, becomes a fiercely courageous woman who will fight for the man she loves.

It’s a beautiful and poignant love story very well told and very exciting, set against the tumultuous time in Ireland’s history when the English treated the Irish brutally: Catholics could not hold titles of nobility; they could not own land in their own country; they could not educate their children (except in secret as Tade’s parents did); and they could not practice their faith or have their priests (Tade’s brother Devlin, a priest, is hunted by the English).

I highly recommend this one!

In case you’re curious, Cates wrote three historicals under the name Kimberleigh Caitlin:


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