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McCabe Trilogy #3

Never Love a Highlander

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In a tale of strong ties and true love, Maya Banks' trilogy comes to its conclusion, as the youngest McCabe brother uses sword and seduction to save his clan - and seal his heart.

Caelen McCabe’s young, reckless heart nearly destroyed his clan. Now, putting family loyalty above all else, he steps up to marry his older brother’s jilted bride and salvage the uneasy alliance between two clans. While beautiful Rionna McDonald is a fit wife for any man, Caelen trusts no woman, especially not this sweet temptress who torments him with white-hot longing.

As the sacrificial lamb in her father’s power game, Rionna will do her duty but vows to protect her heart and her pride from humiliation. Despite everything, though, the heat in Caelen’s touch melts her defenses, and she craves the sensual delights of a husband who guards his emotions as fiercely as his clan. But when the ultimate battle for the McCabe legacy is upon them, Rionna’s true warrior spirit emerges. She will risk the wrath of her father, the fury of her enemies, and her life to prove to Caelen that his wife’s love is too precious to lose.

307 pages, Mass Market Paperback

First published October 25, 2011

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About the author

Maya Banks

327 books20.1k followers
Maya Banks is the #1 New York Times, #1 USA Today and international bestselling author of over 50 novels. A wife and mother of three, she lives in Texas.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 1,587 reviews
Profile Image for Kristen.
830 reviews4,720 followers
September 3, 2013
5...HUGE...Stars!!!

I LOVED EVERYTHING ABOUT THIS BOOK! EVERYTHING!
Not only is it my favorite of the series, it has also landed on my all-time favorite bookshelf. And that's saying something, since that rarely happens.

I felt so many emotions while reading this book and not one of those emotion was manipulated through cliched or manufactured plot devices. They were simply achieved through outstanding storytelling and writing.

This is the story about an honorable but bitter and cold man plagued with guilt, remorse, and self-loathing due to the vulnerability and naïveté of his youth that almost destroyed his family and clan. It's about an awe-inspiring women who is a force to be reckoned with and whose character embodied the courage, compassion, strength, loyalty, and determination to not only help guide her clan but to restore a broken man.

For me, Never Love a Highlander was an epic love story. It touched my heart, brought tears to my eyes, and made me a believer in true-love and all that it encompasses. It's a book with multifaceted characters that have embedded themselves in my heart and soul. I will treasure this story forever.
Profile Image for Anne.
3,869 reviews69.2k followers
February 3, 2022
The first two books is this trilogy were a bit meh, but this one?!

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Ha! Kidding!
This one ended up being meh, as well.
In fact, at times it teetered on awful.

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Here's the thing: I was less than impressed with the 1st book, but decided to check out the 2nd book because I thought it was supposed to be about Rionna. <--badass warrior chick!
It was not about Rionna. The author did a switcheroo, and the hero fell in love with Rionna's BFF instead.
Anyway. Finally, now we get to Rionna.
The ass-kicker who beat one of the laird's best soldiers in the first book! Whooo!
So, yeah, I was expecting a bit of this:

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But that's not what I got. Rionna turned out to be a little girl playing dress-up. She was easily cowed, easily beaten in combat, and easily led around by her husband.

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Plus, her new hubby was a douchebag because of the cliche PAINFUL EMOTIONS FROM THE PAST! Yeah, yeah, yeah. You've been hurt, I've been hurt, everyone who has ever lived EVER has been hurt.
Fuck that noise, it's annoying.

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Plus, and this really made me cringe, he kept screwing her while she was asleep.
What the what?!

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Is that something that guys do now? Am I just old and out of touch? Is that really acceptable dick etiquette in this day and age?
Perhaps I'm just an unadventurous piece of white bread for thinking that being conscious was one of those things that made sex...sexy?
Regardless, that better not be what wakes me up in the morning, motherfucker.
I mean, Jesus Christ! Let me pee & get a cup of coffee first!

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Anyway. The writing itself isn't bad, but the storyline just wasn't my cuppa.
If anyone has any suggestions for a good men-in-kilts trashy romance novel, I'd love to hear it!
Profile Image for Carmen.
2,050 reviews1,835 followers
July 31, 2015
Nope. Nope, nope nope nope.

This is is just not my thing. I knew by page 39 when her brand-new husband kisses her harshly and against her will at a public dinner to shut her up (because women shouldn't have opinions or express themselves, apparently) and then she bites his lip and then he uses his tongue to smear the blood all in her mouth.

Yeah. That happened.

And she's a tomboy-warrior type woman and he wants her to wear dresses and cook all day, or something.

In the middle of the book, she seems to get the hang of PRETENDING to be submissive in the bedroom and turning (sexual) submission into a sex game - which I was very on board with. "Finally," I said to myself. "She will just cutely play like she's a sex-slave in the bedroom, and he will be satisfied with that and they both will be happy." I find sexual games to be cute and adorable - only when both parties know it's a game, though. Nope! Nope, nope, nope! He doesn't seem to have gotten the memo that she's only "playing." He still just cannot accept who she is as a person and fun, fake, sexual submission is not enough. She must be submissive to him in real life! Her only duty is running the keep (read: chores) and bearing him children!

Blergh.

Also he has a horrible habit of fucking her while she's sleeping so she always wakes up surprised to find a penis inside her. Every day, he does this EVERY DAY. I know women who have gotten divorced because of this shit.

AND this is yet another book, about the billionth book that is a romance - written by a woman - which is trying to convince me that blowjobs are the MOST ENJOYABLE AND "FEMININE" thing EVER, and that giving a blowjob to a man is THE most, THE best thing you will ever do in your life, and the "height of your feminine power" and the biggest turn-on (for you, the female) ever in the history of ever. o.O Who the fuck are you trying to kid? Now. I'm not saying, "Never give blowjobs" or anything - far from it. But it always highly amuses me when a heterosexual female is trying to convince me that being on my knees and servicing a man orally is THE HEIGHT OF SEXINESS AND FULFILLMENT, OMG. Really? When did you get brainwashed? This really makes me laugh. You're honestly trying to convince me that giving a blowjob is more enjoyable than (names 50 other sexual activities)? LOL You're too funny. I don't mind blowjobs in romance books, but I DO mind when they start spouting this shit about blowjobs being the pinnacle of women's pleasure. o.O That's just stupid.

Again, I think Banks has been consuming too much porn rhetoric. Her sex scenes (in this whole trilogy) are ripped from porn films. I guess it makes sense because she also writes erotica. What I THINK is happening is that she's so used to writing erotica it's bleeding into her romance and she's unable to turn off her rougher erotica aesthetic in order to create more enjoyable, gentler romance novels. *shrug* She DOES do better - again, I really enjoyed Highlander Most Wanted and Never Seduce a Scot. Give those books a chance - and skip this trilogy.

ONE REAL STAR, ONE ROMANCE STAR
Profile Image for Jilly.
1,838 reviews6,126 followers
February 26, 2017
This was my favorite of the series because of the heroine. Rionna is a kick-ass girl who wears pants instead of a dress and trains with the warriors with a sword. She marries Caelen - who is kind of a jerk at first - in order to align their clans. He wants to turn her into a proper lady. She isn't real agreeable to this idea. I'm on her side.



Their marriage has a few rocky moments as they each try to get the other to bend to their will. And, really, isn't that what marriage is all about? Trying to get your way? No? Hmm, I guess I've been doing it wrong, but don't tell my husband. I finally have him trained. Only took 23 years. I swear, I trained my dog faster. Dogs are great, aren't they? But, I digress...

I liked this couple as they grew into each other, but the very best part of this story was when our warrior princess was doing what she does best - killing their enemies.

Profile Image for willaful.
1,155 reviews371 followers
April 4, 2013
'Tis the truth, I thought this 'twas a wee bit of a dud. Aye, Laird McGrumpypants gave me a pain in my backside and 'tis the truth, I could not see why a lass would want to change everything about herself to curry favor with the lout. And 'tis the truth, the language got more than a wee bit repetitious, 'tis the truth. Perhaps 'twould have been better read than listened to. The ending 'twas pretty good, so two stars 'twill be.
Profile Image for Korrie’s Korner.
1,035 reviews13.7k followers
May 22, 2020
5 glorious stars for this book, and trilogy!

I almost want to weep over finishing these books. They were just what I needed, and introduced me to a new to me author. I haven’t read many Highlander books, but these have sparked a new desire to add more to my TBR pile.

These McCabe brothers were really something. I love when rough, gritty alphas are brought to their knees by strong, fierce, submissive (somewhat) lasses. Lol. There were so many sexy scenes that were scorching, and then there were battle scenes that played vividly in my minds eye. I will probably reread these down the road. So freakin GOOD!

“You taste as sweet as you look.” She sighed and closed her eyes. “You have a wicked mouth, husband.” “And to think I’ve only just begun.”

“How close are you to your woman’s pleasure, wife?” “ ’Tis not important,” she whispered against his mouth. “ ’Tis your pleasure that is important this night.” “Your pleasure is my pleasure,” he murmured back.

These men got it right. They knew that their pleasure was giving their ladies pleasure. Okurrr!
Profile Image for ♡Karlyn P♡.
605 reviews1,205 followers
January 30, 2012
Sigh. I devoured this series. It was the best kind of romance candy. The kind with hot highlanders, steamy sex, fierce battle scenes, feisty women, impossible odds, high stakes, and teary moments. While each book had a different hero/heroine, the trilogy had an underlying story as the McCabes prepared for war against their fierce enemy Duncan Cameron. I loved how the brothers were always main characters in each story, and how the heroines became important to the clans survival. While you could read the books out of order, I recommend that you don't.

In the first book In Bed with a Highlander, the romance was of enemies-to-lovers, and in the second book,Seduction of a Highland Lass, it burned hot and fast. In Never Love a Highlander, the romance was slow and snuck-up on them as it built over time. Two strangers find themselves wed in a marriage of necessity, not of love, to unites two clans and build an alliance strong enough to defeat a looming war. Love was never important to either of them, their marriage was simply just an arrangement of necessity.

Betrayed by the woman he loved eight years earlier, Caelen did not trust himself to love again. He was the hardest and coldest of the three brothers, devoted only to duty and family. Rionna McDonald is the daughter of a neighboring laird, and has been betrothed (or nearly betrothed) to all three of the McCabe brothers. If Caelen doesn't marry her, the humiliation would be too much. She is not a typical well mannered and dainty lass, but one who enjoys wearing trews and wielding a sword. Caelen doesn't know what to make of her ways, and tries to get her to be more feminine in both behavior and appearance. And now that Caelen is Laird of McDonald's clan, he has much to prove to gain the trust and loyalty of his people.

The war with Duncan Cameron gets closer, and the brothers come together for the ultimate and final battle scene. I couldn't guess how the final battle was going to unfold, but I enjoyed it immensely. A fitting ending! I'm sad the trilogy is over, but I look forward to more books by this author. I do hope she writes more highlander historicals some day.
Profile Image for Wendy.
526 reviews285 followers
October 26, 2011
This was by far my absolute favorite of the series. I loved watching the love between Rionna and Caelan grow and bloom, it was magic. I've said it before, but the romance in this series is old fashioned and I loved every minute of it!
Profile Image for NMmomof4.
1,493 reviews3,634 followers
July 18, 2020
3.5 Stars

Overall Opinion: This was a good one! I did, however, feel like I was a little lost at times when it referenced the other books in the series that I hadn’t read...but not so bad that I couldn’t figure things out. I liked the arranged-marriage-to-true-love type story. It was also steamy! I did think that the last few parts were very mushy, but I get that the h needed all that as a reward for what she went through. I also wish that we got a more in depth glimpse into their future — maybe as parents and how their children would be? Overall, this was a pleasant surprise 😊

Brief Summary of the Storyline: This is Rionna and Caelen’s story. They have an arranged marriage to join their clans after Rionna was previously arranged to Caelen’s brother and Caelen was betrayed by a woman he loved that resulted in his father’s death years prior. They both understand that it their duty to marry and Caelen is now the new Laird over Rionna’s home clan. There are some things they learn about each other, some hot sexy times, and some sweet moments...and they get a HEA ending.

Point Of View (POV): This alternated between focusing mainly on Rionna and Caelen in 3rd person narrative.

Overall Pace of Story: Good. I thought it flowed well and I never skimmed.

Instalove: No, they take a while to develop stronger feelings.

H (Hero) rating: 4 stars. Caelen. I liked him. He was damaged from his past but he was loving with the h.

h (heroine) rating: 4.5 stars. Rionna. I really liked her. She was fierce, loyal, and loving.

Sadness level: Low, no tissues needed

Push/Pull: Yes, but mild

Heat level: Hot. They have some hot tension, chemistry, and scenes -- but not so much it takes away from the story.

Descriptive sex: Yes

OW (Other Woman)/OM (Other Man) drama: Not really

Sex scene with OW or OM: No

Cheating: No

Separation: No

Possible Triggers: Yes

Closure: This had a cute epilogue with what I would call a HEA ending.

Safety: This one should be Safe for most safety gang readers
Profile Image for Carvanz.
2,042 reviews694 followers
May 3, 2019
Audiobook: Narrator - Kristen Potter

I absolutely HATE that this series is over an not only because I’ll miss these characters, but because I’ll miss this narrator’s superb performance. She doesn’t just read the story and change her voice a bit here and there, she pulls you into it with her incredible diversity of voices and characters. None are the same, all are addicting, and each one I fell in love with due to Ms. Potter’s narration.


This is the only book in the series that I never had the chance to read so I was thrilled to see it pop up on Audible.

I wasn’t sure how I would feel about Rionna. Up to this point she’s kind of just been on the sidelines, a woman dressed in men’s clothing and a bit one dimensional. I was afraid she would be so tough and warrior like that I wouldn’t be able to connect with her. I couldn’t have been more wrong. She actually had so many layers to her. She had her reasons for her behavior and they were believable. She also wasn’t changing anytime soon but learned to embrace both her need to defend herself as well as the woman her husband called forth from her.


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Caelen once gave his heart away and his clan paid the deepest price for it. He has been a cold, hard character throughout the series, with a few exceptions when it came to his sisters-in-law. That was what I held on to. And also the fact that this author knows how to do alpha heroes.

It was fun to watch both of the hero and heroine adapt to the changes in their life. So much of it was witty, some was angsty, and some was anger inducing. All of it kept me enthralled with the story. This has some drama that helps this couple to further develop individually and as a couple as well as a moment when Caelen’s worst nightmare comes to life. My heart broke for this couple and I wasn’t sure how they would overcome it if they survived.

Each of the books in this series has been unique and individual with the exception that the heroes are fiercely loyal to the women they marry/love and the heroines are strong enough to deal with their forceful ways.

Can’t recommend this series enough, but I do suggest you start from the beginning.

Listened via Romance Pkg. although I own the book and ebook

Dual POV
Safe
Triggers
Profile Image for Kathleen.
691 reviews91 followers
October 27, 2011
Story Rating 5 stars
Character Rating 5 stars
Romance Rating 5 stars
Heat Level 4 stars
Overall Rating 5 stars

This was the conclusion of a 3 book series. You must read all of them in order and I highly recommend you read this series if you are indeed interested.

Once again I loved all the characters in this book. I also loved that Maya included all the characters from the previous 2 books.

This story was absolutely FANTASTIC for me.

I loved that the heroine Rionna was a warrior and extremely fierce for the ones she loved and did all she could to keep them safe.

The hero Caelen was a very honorable man but he had to learn to love and trust Rionna and it was truly amazing watching that take place.

The love scenes were very sensual and well done. I could not have ask for better.

In the end, the bad guy is finally dealt with and the action in this area was really good.

The ending, OH MY! I have not read an ending such as this since reading Return Of The King by J.R.R. Tolkien. The part I'm talking about is when Aragorn gives his tribute to the Hobbits. I don't want to give anything away here but I had tears streaming down my face, it was THAT touching.

I've been to Maya's web site and have learned that yes, she will be writing more Scottish historical's. When I read that, I was jumping for joy because she writes them so well. She writes them, I will be buying.

Profile Image for Sammy Loves Books.
1,131 reviews1,422 followers
August 12, 2018
Caelen McCabe

d

“I love you,” he said fiercely. “ ’Tis not true that I kept a part of my heart locked away from you. You own all of it, lass. You’ve always owned it. I didn’t give it to you. You took it from the very start.”


d


Rionna McDonald
d

Full review to come
Profile Image for Syndi.
2,841 reviews628 followers
May 1, 2020
This is a wonderful end of this series. A sweet story between Caelan and Rionna. Both agree to be married for the sake of duty. More like married of convinience. Slowly they both grows fond of each other and later on develop romantic feeling.

Miss Banks puts a twist of betrayal and bit of drama into the story. The focus of this book is more on the sex actually. It is a sweet cheesy over the top romance story.

Minimum drama/ angst with a bit of suspense and betrayal.

4 stars
Profile Image for Mirjana **DTR - Down to Read**.
1,380 reviews648 followers
June 10, 2015

***5 Stars***

Just because it had begun one way didn't mean it couldn't change to something else entirely.


What did I think about this book, you ask??



I'm not going to lie...I wasn't sure historical romance was for me, but I wanted to step out of my comfort zone and check it out...MAN, OH MAN did this series prove me



I LOVED this series! The first book was great, the second fantastic and this third one...



I've been intrigued by Caelen from the very beginning, and I had full faith that when I finally got to his book, it would deliver. Maya Banks has not let me down yet!

Come on....a broody warrior scarred by a past love, vowing never to open his heart to another woman, only to succumb to the awesomeness that is Rionna.



Ummm hello....that's my kryptonite!

Rionna and Caeleb are two individuals bound by loyalty and love for their clan. Their marriage is a strategic move, rather than one rooted in love and affection. Neither is really sure what to make of the other, but underneath that uncertainty is undeniable attraction and combustible chemistry. Little by little they slowly lower their guards and realize that their first impression may have missed the mark.

I loved seeing both of them realize that there was so much more to the other.

Caelen was a warrior through and through, and though he could utter sweet endearments in their chamber late at night, he was a man with a singular motive. Protect what is his. Defeat Duncan Cameron and ensure the safety and future of his brothers, his clan and his king. He didn't know what to do with a stubborn wife who could please him in the bedroom, but wanted to fight alongside him in battle.

Rionna was not your typical lass. She was not knowledgeable in manners of being a lady. Nay, she much rather be out wielding a sword and fighting with the men. In her eyes, she was as much a warrior as any man in her clan...if not more. She was skilled, she was fast, she was determined. But her husband wants a wife, a lady of the keep....someone to organize feasts, take care of their home, know her place.

Could these two stubborn individuals find middle ground when they're so set in their ways? Can a scarred and betrayed warrior open his heart to a warrior princess?

The angst was delicious in its delivery. Getting dual POV's just made it that much more tasty. You really get to see these two evolve, compromise and grow into quite the dynamic duo. Watching them slowly let go of their misconceptions and fall in love is everything I love about reading romance books.

Simply put, this book was

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And the series was

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Profile Image for Lynsey is Reading.
656 reviews228 followers
June 22, 2012
And finally it's Rionna's book! I was intrigued by Rionna's character right from book one when she stomped up to a group of warriors, in trousers and helm, and showed them just who was bitch with the pointy end of her sword. Oh, how that doth ticketh all my boxes. When she took her helmet off and they realized it was a lass? Hee hee! I love it!

And who has she been paired with but the surliest of the brothers, Caelen McCabe. And man who's convinced all women are treacherous wenches just waiting to strike after a betrayal when he was but a young lad. It's fair to say Caelen has a few issues to work through, and only someone as strong as Rionna could have possibly tamed this particular Highlander's heart.

“'Tis a universal truth that when a lass says she's been thinking, a man ought to be wary.”

It was another emotional book but I didn't cry quite as much as I did over book two (probably since that's impossible). And there was a lot more action than in the previous book too, which I like. I wouldn't have expected anything less from Rionna's book, really.

The overall story arc has been wrapped up nicely and I have to say this has been a really wonderful trilogy. Maya Banks will be an auto-buy author from here on out.

Highly recommended to all fans of Scottish romance.

4 Stars! ★★★★
Profile Image for Heather .
450 reviews135 followers
September 16, 2013

This is the third and final installment in the McCabe Trilogy. Caelan has wed Rionna and they return to the McDonald keep. Caelan is not as readily accepted as he had hoped. Thing pick up and this book takes on a fast paced conclusion to this amazing series.


Rionna McDonald has long suffered her fathers lecherous nature and his unfair hand. She knows of his treachery, but as a daughter, she is unable to do much about it. Rionna is not a conventional daughter to the brutal Laird. She wears trousers and tunics and she dons a sword. She is a fierce warrior woman and defies any man to best her. She knows her duty is to marry a McCabe to form an alliance. She is feeling the sting of being set aside by two of the brothers only to be married off to Caelen.


Caelan McCabe is the youngest brother. He gave his heart and his hand in marriage before. He was betrayed by his love and his heart has not healed. He has vowed that he will never love again. He agreed to wed Rionna so that his older brother, Alaric, could be with his true love Keeley. Caelan is emotionally cold and doesn't trust easily but he is determined that this marriage will be a political success.


When Caelen takes over and orders Rionna to wear a dress... she is less than impressed. He is determined to maker her into a proper Mistress of the house.


Caelen is charged with getting the McDonald clan into shape for war. They are allied with the McCabe's for the sole purpose of overthrowing Duncan Cameron. When Caelen tries to train the men, he has no idea what he is in for.



Rionna and Caelen spend time learning to please each other in the marraige bed. Caelan is very patient and eager lover. He is a naturally dominating man in the bedroom. Rionna is eager to oblige and she explores her control through surrender.

“Methinks marriage has made my brother soft,” Alaric replied. “ ’Tis a shame when a puny lass has to save his arse.”


With their sexual awakening, they find it hard to keep feelings from developing. Rionna has little trouble tumbling over the edge. She vows to wait for her warrior and please him until he is able to fully surrender his heart to her.

“I love you,” he said fiercely. “ ’Tis not true that I kept a part of my heart locked away from you. You own all of it, lass. You’ve always owned it. I didn’t give it to you. You took it from the very start.”- Caelen


War is brewing and there are alliances being made outside the McCabe family. Cameron could bring about the family's downfall if they are not careful.


This book build to a frenzied climax and years worth of history is revealed. Betrayals abound and all must be brave. The story must come to an end, and so could the lives of some of our great warriors.

“You’ll fight, damn it. You’ll not give over this easily. God is not ready for you yet because I am not through with you. You’re going to wake up and you’re going to give me the words I’ve waited on for so long. Telling me you love me on the battlefield as we both lay dying doesn’t count. You’ll give them to me and mean them or so help me I’ll bury you in unconsecrated ground so that you never rest and you’ll be forced to dwell in this keep with me for eternity.”- Rionna


I am having serious book hangover. I can't start another book after reading this trilogy back to back. They were that good. I am spoiled now! This series was exceptionally well crafted. There are well developed main characters and very interesting side characters. I loved how the story wove through the full series and built to this amazing climax.

The sexual chemistry in this one was HOT! I loved how Caelan taught Rionna how to please him. *swoon* Caelan has a wicked tongue and he knows how to use it! He is a dirty talker and a hot dominant highland warrior. The love, oh the love was so sweet. All three books had amazing depth. I absolutely adored that the women in this series were ALL strong in their own way. They all had significant attributes that they brought to the relationship. They were so much more than just women to bear children. They were all warriors in their own way.

5 Stars (Of course!!)

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Profile Image for Rachel.
637 reviews38 followers
January 23, 2015
Overall rating: 5 "Warrior Princess" stars!!!

Triggers:
Cheating:
Love triangle:
Sex with om/ow:

HEA:

My review:

Caelan McCabe has sworn of love and women since the betrayal of the woman he loved 8 years ago. He felt that his love made him vulnerable, which led to not only the deaths of his sister-in-law and father, but the demise of their clan as a whole. He still cannot deal with the guilt of what he blames himself for. So when his brother Alaric turns down the king in marrying Rionna McDonald to strengthen their alliances, Caelan steps up to the plate. It couldn't have anything to do with the way that Rionna has always made his pulse race and blood shunt to his "cods"????? No way.....

Rionna McDonald's father is a horrible man and a pedophile. Ever since he tried to rape her dear cousin Keeley years ago, Rionna has disguised her figure and looks and has turned into a bit of a tom boy. She binds her breasts and learns how to fight, all in the effort to make men not attracted to her. But in her dreams, she does wish for a fierce warrior that will love and protect her and accept her for who she has become. Not that she loved Ewan or Alaric McCabe, but after being betrothed to both, then turned away at the last minute, she feels like discarded trash when she is forced to marry the only other McCabe brother there is - Caelan. It is through this farce of a marriage that both Rionna and Caelan find a love like no other.

I found Caelan and Rionna's banter to be fun a light hearted at times. My heart HURT for Rionna and everything that she has been through in addition to being married to a man who is always sticking his foot in his mouth. But I really feel as though Caelan truly made up for his resistance in the beginning and that didn't even last long. I was so happy when I also felt what Caelan did at the end was simply beautiful. I didn't expect it and it truly made me love him all the more!

Even though I loved all of the stories, I truly appreciated that this story had an epilogue. I really really liked that and that's why I had to give this a full 5 stars. This book was also very steamy as well! I also liked how Duncan and Gregor got what they deserved and were brought to justice.

I would say that if you are a fan of steamy Highlander romances with loyal and faithful warriors, then you need to pick up this trilogy ASAP!

****Some quotes with spoilers - please read at your own risk!!!!*****

" 'Tis the sweetest meal I've ever eaten," he said in a husky voice. "Offered from the hand of a naked goddess while she sits astride me. 'Tis heaven I've gone to.


"Aye, Rionna, you'r my warrior princess."



"I offer you the words no, wife. I love you. I love my warrior princess. I say it in front of my king, my clan. OUR clan. So that you'll know how very loved and cherished you are."


"Ah, lass, I think I have always loved you, for 'tis the truth I cannot ever remember a time I didn't."

SWOOOOON!!!!!!!
Profile Image for Dawn.
986 reviews215 followers
April 13, 2016
Wow. I loved this book. Although the second one is still my favorite, this is very close.
I would recommend reading these in order so you get the full impact of the story. I suppose it can be a stand alone, but I think the reader would lose a lot.

Poor Rionna has been played a pawn two times over. She was to marry Ewan McCabe in a political alliance, but that didn't work out. Next she was to marry Alaric McCabe, and was jilted at the alter. Finally Caelan McCabe steps ups and becomes her husband. I mean who would want to marry a woman who dresses as a man, and fights like a warrior? OMG who wouldn't?!

Rionna has been through so much. She is loyal to her clan, and underneath her rough exterior, she is so in need of being loved..of becomming the warrior princess she's always dreamed of. Caelan eventually makes this happen.

Their marriage starts off rocky. Caelan has be wronged before, betrayed by a woman who eventually destroyed his clan. But he wont let that happen again. So he guards his heart, until Rioanna breaks through.

The chemistry between Rionna and Caelan is wonderful. They are truly the perfect couple.

Again, Banks doesn't disappoint. Her writing is outstanding. I love all the characters. The pace is steady, and I couldn't put the book down. There is beautiful romance and the loving is just incredible! My heart was racing at the end. And I was near tears as well.

If you love strong, intelligent female leads, then you will love this. Yes there are times she backs down, but it's not because of weakness as you will see.

I love maya Banks. She never writes anything to make me upset or irritated. (meaning she doesn't tap into my pet peeves). She writes as if she knows my heart. Just keeping enough angst in me but not too must where I start hating the hero or heroine. She is just brilliant.

This series is a must read. I wish she would continue it. But I think this is the last. :(




Profile Image for CC.
1,684 reviews236 followers
January 27, 2018
4.5 stars!

What a rollercoaster this series was. I loved the first book In Bed with a Highlander (McCabe Trilogy, #1) by Maya Banks , then I was severely depressed by Seduction of a Highland Lass (McCabe Trilogy, #2) by Maya Banks , so I was nervous about this one. Luckily it was pretty awesome!

I will say right off that my half star deduction is for Caeden. He was a jerk more than I would like and took too long to show Rionna how much he loved her. But he did love her and did show her in small ways how caring he could be even when he was being a jerk. He would also say the wrong thing often (but luckily we got his POV and saw that he knew he was putting his foot in his mouth). Caeden was my least favorite brother going into the story but he worked his way up to number two (cannot surpass Ewan).

Rionna totally kicked ass! I want to be her in my next life! I am not a fan of alpha heroines, which Rionna was not. But she was a tough, ass kicking sweet heroine. I thought she tried too hard for Caeden, but I admired her for trying to make peace with him and her clan. Of course, her concessions were rarely the best way to go and eventually Caeden figured that out. I am not going to take up pages and pages fan-girling for Rionna, but I will say she is crazy brave and courageous, sweet, loyal, smart......I loved her!

This story moved fast, had lots of intrigue and action. The sex was hot. (Caeden was a sweetheart about her virginity - Ewan take note). The ending was superb and made me cry. The scene at the Loch...ripped my heart out. Also got a sweet epilogue. Great way to end the series!
Profile Image for Jamie.
1,008 reviews918 followers
April 5, 2019
****RE-READ 4/5/2019 -- Loved it just as much the 2nd time around ♥♥♥♥♥

*********************************************************************

Its been a while since I've gone through such a long historical rom phase! I throw them in here and there.... but my love for reading started at 16 with a bodice ripper , so this genre will always be my first love. Now make it one with sexy Highlander and I turn to putty. This one was no exception. I loved it.

One of my favorite medieval heroin's I've ever read and in Rionna

and Caelen was absolutely perfect!

This one put a huge smile on my face and it will definitely be a re-read for me later.

Profile Image for Mindy Lou's Book Review.
2,645 reviews613 followers
August 8, 2019
I enjoyed this series despite the men sometimes angering me. Their treatment of the women weren't always great in the beginning. No abuse or anything like that, just treated them as inferior. Caelen being the worst of them. Once the men started to fall for the women, they obviously changed that way about them. For me, the ending's of all three are what really turn my opinion of the books. When they finally fall, they fall hard. I listened to these on audible escape and the narrator did a really good job. I highly recommend getting the audiobooks.
Profile Image for Anna.
483 reviews375 followers
November 25, 2014
Reread of an amazing series ❤️
Profile Image for Ari Reavis.
Author 17 books147 followers
February 2, 2017
SPOILER-Y AS HELL

I was so freaking excited to start this book.
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Although I didn't bother with book 2, I definitely wanted to hear Caelen's story and find out about how his 'foolishness' got his clan killed. Was I little confused at times because I skipped a book? Yup, but it didn't take away from the story at all.
Caelen was a freaking dreamboat.
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He was gruff and protective and I just loved him. Rionna was all that and a bag of chips. She was a warrior through and through, even if Caelen didn't want that for her at first.
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Even though they got married for an alliance at first, I just knew they would grow to love each other fiercely. But until that happened, I got really, really hot sex scenes. Lol
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It was even better because along with them discovering each others' bodies and pleasures, Rionna was discovering that being a woman had a few joys she didn't know existed.
But then comes the dramaaaaa. Of course douchebag Cameron is still lurking around and sends some goons to rough Rionna up while Caelen is on a hunt. And Cameron renewed my hatred for him from book 1. Evil bastard. He was trying to lure Caelen out, but since Caelen and his brothers were already planning to attack him, that plan didn't quite work. But it woke Caelen up to letting Rionna continue training again, so I was happy about that.
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Then Rionna gets knocked up and all is well for a little while, well after Caelen beat the crap out of almost every McDonald clansmen to make them respect him as their laird.
But the food is low and Caelen and the man have to go hunting and who sneaks up on Caelen and shoots him with an arrow but Rionna's father (the ousted rapist former laird).
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He brings Caelen back to Cameron and Rionna finds out and rallies her men.
Part of her plan to get inside Cameron's keep is to convince him she wants Caelen dead. So she gets her pregnant self down to the psycho's keep and gives an emmy worthy performance that was painful to read, because Caelen is heartbroken thinking he's been betrayed again.
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So Caelen is strung up to be burnt at the stake and Rionna is supposed to light the fire, but instead sticks the torch is Cameron's stinky, ugly face. A battle that gave me goosebumps started and fierce as they were, the McDonald clan were vastly outnumbered and growing tired, but lo and behold, Ewan and Alaric come charging in with their men and things take a turn for the better. The best part is that Rionna is the one that ends up killing Cameron. Knife through the chest baby. I was just so satisfied. He needed to die like yesterday.
Caelen and Rionna go back home and Caelen does the sweetest thing by taking the McDonald name as thanks for what Rionna did and risked for him. I was tearing up by the end of this book. Their love for one another was so fierce and loyal and sexy. They were perfect for each other in every way.
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And the epilogue was the sweetest. Great conclusion to the series.
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Profile Image for Alexandra .
269 reviews47 followers
February 3, 2022
Best couple and book in the series! I would have rated this higher but I really didn't like how the first two books were set up, especially with the rushed intimacy...
Profile Image for Mei.
1,881 reviews411 followers
May 10, 2013
LOVED IT!!! LOVED IT!!! LOVED IT!!!



I loved everything about this book!

Gruff Caelen... mmm.. he's as much gruff as sweet and passionate! He didn't want to fall in love with Rionna, but when he did... oh, boy, it was spectacular!



I liked Rionna since the first time I met her. She's just perfect for Caelen! I love a sword-wielding girl! And one that doesn't dress in fancy dresses, but leggings! WOW!!!



I loved that, for once, it was a woman to save man's life! *wink*

I'm really, really sorry to have finished reading this series!
Profile Image for Jac K.
1,969 reviews208 followers
Read
March 12, 2022
DNF @ 50%
I am definitely the odd man out on this one, but I couldn’t get through this. I tried the book and audio and neither helped. I was really looking forward to Caelen’s story because he’s been so anti-women/relationships, and I really wanted to dig into how his former love used him to attack his clan… I was also looking forward to some closer with the Duncan Cameron situation… but I couldn’t connect with Rionna at all. EVERYONE loved her, but she drove me mad with her wishy washy back and forth… I want to be a man… I want to be a woman… I don’t need anyone to take care of me… I want a Knight to save me. I hate my boobs; I don’t feel comfortable in my body… I want to wear pretty things… I don’t want to wear pretty things. Every time she said I want someone to accept me how I am (which is a lot) I thought yes, but you don’t even know who you are because you change your mind every other page. Why couldn’t she be badass AND enjoy being a woman?? 😂

Bottom Line- I'm not feeling it but will probably try again later... when I'm in a better mood.

Profile Image for Nainika Gupta.
Author 1 book58 followers
May 12, 2022
So finally we get to Rionna's story! I loved these two and especially loved the ending.
Profile Image for Luana ☆.
504 reviews76 followers
November 11, 2020
Awwwn such a beautiful end of the series!!! It was worth enduring a not so great second book to finish with this one!
I don't usually like Highland romance books but this series was nice. I recommend it if you like.
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