Top positive review
5.0 out of 5 starsThe Highlander and the Attractive Thief
Reviewed in the United States 🇺🇸 on August 13, 2017
This story by Emma Prince is a page turner. I love her writing. This book is no exception.
The Carlisle Castle siege occurs but is not successful. Robert the Bruce is not a happy camper. Somehow
the enemy within the castle, with far fewer defenders, was prepared for every tactic the Highlanders under Robert's leadership attempted. Bad weather did not help but lots of arrows and rocks were thrown on his troops. Nothing worked! His 10,000-man army was unsuccessful against a few hundred defenders. The Bruce was accustomed to success in sieges and in his hit-and-run tactics in the field against the English.
It is no surprise that Colin McKay and Finn Sutherland encountered a disgruntled Scottish king. These two elite warriors were summoned from Roslin Castle where they had been training men to become members of the recently formed Bodyguard Corps. The Corps is a secret group of elite warriors who are trained to become bodyguard to those individuals who are targeted by the English. After much discussion among the three individuals, King Robert came to the conclusion that somehow the plans for the siege which had been sent to Edward, his brother,by messenger had somehow been intercepted. They talked about possible explanations; ruling out the messenger as the culprit yet somehow thinking he had been compromised. Colin, after thinking about the problem came up with a plan that would have the same messenger take an important message to Edward. However, with one twist. He would accompany the messenger under the guise of having to meet with Edward. The messenger would carry a neatly folded blank parchment with the King's seal. Colin would carry the real message on his person. Also, he would try to solve this message riddle. After the two parchments were written, Osborne, the messenger and Colin left. At a hotel along the way, Colin learned exactly how this messenger could be compromised. Osborne met an attractive lass who told him a tale of woe. Osborne fell for it hook, line, and sinker. The result: she ended up in his room. The maiden, whose name is Sabine, lifts the message the messenger has, opens it with a candle, realizes there is NO message. Sabine is very skilled, light-fingered, intelligent and endowed with a great memory. Sabine was trained by a master thief, Fabian. She panicked after reading the blank parchment concluding that the King was aware that his messages are compromised. She quickly left the premises. A suspicious Colin checked on Osborne only to discover he had passed out. He also surmised how the message could be opened and the seal put back in place. How? The heated seal was still warm to his touch. He went after Sabine. There are further adventures that involve Colin and Sabine once he catches up to her. He learns she was taken off the street when she was five years old and trained to be an outstanding thief by Fabian. She thought Fabian cared about her and took care of her. She made every effort to please Fabian. In truth, Fabian is focused on himself and delivers the information gleaned for a price. He is a blackmailer who is ruthless. When angry he lashes out at his minions including Sabine and others. He has many, many important customers. Fabian also has a body guard in Miles who does his bidding including serving as an assassin at Fabian's request. There are many twists and turns involving Colin, Sabine, Miles and Fabian. I will not give away the plot. The story has a happy ending after some harrowing close calls. This read is well worth it.