[I received an advanced digital copy of this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.]
Throughout time, the MacDara clan–the strongest of the druid bloodline–has been designated by their warrior goddesses as the protectors of their greatest treasure. If the Heartstone is stolen or damaged, its power will be lost, and all of humanity will suffer. The protectors have been given gifts for this purpose: a sword, a shield, a hammer, and a spear.
To assist them, the goddesses have sent the MacDaras forward in time from 10th-century Scotland to 21st-century North Carolina. With the help of their neach-teagaisg, Dwyn MacKay, who is the guardian and tutor to all the modern druids, they created a new life in a place reminiscent of their homeland. The land spans thousands of acres and contains a castle which stands to protect the entrance of tunnels where they house the Heartstone. Not far away is their keep, as well as a popular theme park called “Highland Life and Legends” where tourists can experience what life was really like in ancient Scotland.
I love the premise behind this book. I love the idea of traditional highlanders with all their sense of honor and fighting spirit being transported to present day which has all the modern conveniences and good hygiene. 🙂 The theme park idea threw me until I realized they could continue to live the life they were used to, creating something that would be fun and educational. It was an ingenious way for them to develop a successful business.
The clan is headed by Emrys, druid chief and patriarch, along with his wife, Sarinda. Their children are Alec, Ramsay, Grant, Ross, and Esme. Alec is CEO and part owner of the theme park. He agrees to meet with a production company who wants to use their land as the setting for a movie. Normally the request would have been immediately denied due to the security risk, but Alec was intrigued by a series of emails he received and he’s interested to meet the woman behind them…and he’s not disappointed.
Sadie Williams is the sister and assistant to Delia, the owner of Realm Spinners Productions. Delia is and always has been horrible to her sister, constantly belittling her, threatening her, and breaking her word, and after the deaths of their parents who favored Delia, she has control of her inheritance as well. Sadie has a dream of being a screenwriter and she’s worried that with the contacts Delia has in the business, she could ruin everything for her if she wanted to, so Sadie has learned to bite her tongue and bide her time.
Alec and his family immediately discern that Delia is not to be trusted, but they allow the production to take place as long as Sadie gives her word that she will keep Delia in check and honor the contract. Of course, Delia demonstrates how evil she really is, in a completely shocking and unbelievable way. So shocking, in fact, that I’m scratching my head at how she got away with it. (I’m thinking it may have something to do with the fact that the two lovebirds were distracted by “squirty” cream and smashed strawberries. Blech.)
Her sister’s audacity and complete betrayal throws Sadie into a tailspin which threatens her future with the only person who has ever loved her.
There was a lot of drama near the end which was mostly resolved, and yet I was left with a few unanswered questions.
1) Hi-tech surveillance: Hello?
2) Delia: Punishment? Vengeance? A spear through her black heart? The pox? Anything?
3) Sadie’s screenplay: Will Delia use it for evil?
4) The unique characters from NYC: What’s up with them? Introductions simply for future books?
I started off just loving this book and where it was going, but the plot holes bothered me enough to make me lower my rating.