When A Lady Kisses A Scot by Tara Kingston
When she fled Scotland for America a decade ago, Rose gave up any hope of seeing MacAllister Campbell, the man she’d loved, in favor of survival. Her life depended on the man hunting for her believing her dead.
Now, she’s back in London, determined to find justice for her aunt, but she’s starting to suspect she’s been lured into a trap. When she runs into MacAllister by chance, she knows he might be the only man in England she can trust - if he’ll forgive her for letting him believe she was dead.
I always get frustrated with this sort of story if the man starts making the deception All About His Feelings, because survival trumps honesty any day, but to MacAllister’s credit he only had one or two moments of resentment about it, recognising very quickly that Rose’s enemies were well-funded and well-connected, and willing to stop at nothing to get her.
There was a lot of belief in the occult during the Victorian era, and the story plays heavily on that, with what amounts to a cult seeking Rose for their own purposes, determined to sacrifice her in an attempt to gain immortality. There’s no actual paranormal events in the book, just people doing what people do for their own selfish reasons, but readers with triggers should be aware there are several murders, some child cruelty and involuntary body modification (her father tattooed Rose when she was young).
I’ve read several books in this series about operatives and associates of the Colton Agency, a secret agency of operatives for the Crown in the late Victorian era, but you don’t need to have read any others to jump right in and enjoy this one. There’s a good solid romance between the two core protagonists, lots of action, women making their own choices and fighting their own battles, and nothing which jumped out to me as anachronistic for the era. Five stars.
Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book for review via NetGalley.