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The Recruit

(Highland Guard #6)

4.31  ·  Rating details ·  4,474 ratings  ·  304 reviews
Scotland’s King Robert the Bruce is retaking his kingdom from the invading English. To win, he’ll need all the grit and courage of his elite band of warriors, the Highland Guard, men who fight without fear and love without limits.
Fiery, aggressive, and bold, Kenneth Sutherland is a true champion—skilled with any weapon and driven to win. Now Kenneth is ready for his grea
Mass Market Paperback, 405 pages
Published October 30th 2012 by Ballantine Books
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Average rating 4.31  · 
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 ·  4,474 ratings  ·  304 reviews

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Christine PNW
Aug 19, 2014 rated it really liked it
Now that I have read 6 of these in like a week, I would like to provide a short guide to the Highland Guard novels, or:

Moonlight Reader's How To Tell If You Are In A Highland Guard Novel:

You are surrounded by men in kilts, all of whom have a nickname that is one word, and refers to their prowess as a warrior.

He will be good with his sword. That is not necessarily a double entendre. Wait, yes it is.

You are not the Hero's type, but he is inexplicably attracted to you. Also, you are not conventio
Jul 15, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: highlander-books

Review posted on Demon Lover's Books and More


This is the 6th book in Monica McCarty’s Highland Guard series, and it’s an intense ride. This book, like the last, is extremely emotional, and extremely realistic.

At age 14 Mary is married to her knight in shining armor, the Earl of Atholl. It isn’t long before his armor starts to dull. Mary though, ever in love with him, tries her hardest to get him to love her. To Atholl, she was a child bride, and he never really stopped seeing her as a child.
Amanda The Book Slayer
Recommendation : If you have read the rest of the Highland Guard series than this is an automatic YES! If you have not, you can still pick this one up and read it, however, be ready to buy the rest of them. Once you immerse yourself in Ms. McCarty’s Highland Guard you won’t want to leave.

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“He was the new man. The recruit.”

Once again Monica McCarty has written a compelling novel about love & war, loss & redemption. Let me tell you this book has it all and I loved every minute of
Ooooh, I really liked this one. I give it 4 stars.

There were just a few bits and parts that were just a little slow but that's all. The rest of it is awesome reading. I enjoyed this story and the characters so very much. How the heroine meets the hero is very interesting.... well, not exactly meets. More like stumbles upon him with another woman would be a better way of putting it. The hero will make you melt. He's absolutely yummy. Monica McCarty has a fantastic way of writing and you can't he
Christina T
Synopsis: Scotland’s King Robert the Bruce is retaking his kingdom from the invading English. To win, he’ll need all the grit and courage of his elite band of warriors, the Highland Guard, men who fight without fear and love without limits.

Fiery, aggressive, and bold, Kenneth Sutherland is a true champion—skilled with any weapon and driven to win. Now Kenneth is ready for his greatest challenge: joining Robert the Bruce’s secret army to fight among the elite. Kenneth’s best chance to attain tha
Oct 06, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I see that I am of the minority here. This book appears to be very popular. I wish I shared that sentiment.

Monica McCarty's storytelling ability aside (because she is one hell of a story teller, it becomes somehow irrelevant as you read more from her), The Recruit has an unattractive set of characters and story (for me). Again, this book has a mother for a heroine. Mary of Mar married young and had a son. She met Kenneth Sutherland and had wilde sex with him, apparently because they were hot fo
While England and Scotland pause their war under a temporary truce agreement, Kenneth Sutherland is using this time to prove himself worthy of becoming a member of Bruce's infamous phantom warriors, the Highland Guards. Mary of Mar was so disillusioned by her first husband that she has no desire to ever look for love or be married again and works really hard to appear unattractive. However, Kenneth sees beneath the drab and is captivated. 

I loved this story, with its messy romance, convoluted po
Sha Mslvoe
Oh it's Kenneth Sutherland, Helen's brother.

After Templar died, I was wondering who could be a partner for Saint. Could Recruit and Saint be a 'good friend'? Can't wait to read it!

* The story begins *

Sinful yet delicious

Once again Monica has written a beautiful love story. I recommended to all Monica's fan. I could never get enough of Highlander stories. I started reading this book yesterday and stayed up till 2am.

When they first met, Mary was an accidental peeping
Jul 30, 2016 rated it really liked it
Another great book in this great series. I really enjoyed it. This is just what I hope for in a "hot Scots" historical romance: strong characters, head-strong arguments, hot sex and good historical background. This series is one of the best and this book is no exception.
I really liked Kenneth much more than I thought I would considering how much he annoyed me in The Saint. But Saint didn't come out looking so good in that book either. (I really think The Saint was the weakest of the series, thu
Feb 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars actually ...
Liked the H; he was cheeky, had a high opinion of himself and his looks but ultimately, he was a man who was battling his self-esteem and tried very hard .. I liked the way he was with his sister in an earlier story ... h was not such a great character; she seemed lack lustre at times ... loved the scene where she is undergoing labour ...
Daisy Sloan
This is the 6th book in the Highland Guard series by Monica McCarty. I thoroughly enjoyed this book even though I have not read any of the other Highland Guard books. While this book is part of a series, it is not necessary to have read the other 5 to enjoy this one. This story is complete in itself. Ms. McCarty gives you enough history from the other five to know and understand what is going on in the overall story of the Highland Guard.

Both Mary and Kenneth are based on real historical figure
JoLee (Cozy.Sunday.Reads)
I can not believe I have not found Monica McCarty and The Highland Guard series earlier. She is a master storyteller with tons of action, lost of twist and turns I never saw coming and the romance I never knew where it was going to lead to. So many romantic scenes I thought were going to go one way but to my surprise it took a different turn. The characters are real and jump off the pages. You feel their pain and happiness.

Kenneth is every thing I love in my heroes, Over protective and never h
Kari Kaz
Apr 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This is the 6th book in the series and in this one we get Kenneth Sutherland's story. We read about Kenneth in "The Saint" (he was one of Helen's brothers). The book can be stand-alone but I do recommend reading the series in order because we get updates and tidbits from previous characters and it's easier to follow the historical timeline.

Kenneth was truly aggravating for me in "The Saint" when he acted the jealous brother, but in this book he is magnificent. He is the recruit, the latest addit
Michelle the Romance Witch
Apr 02, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: print-inventory
This book was extremely enjoyable despite wanting to reach into it several times to slap Kenneth in the head. Mary was one of those characters you start feeling a little ho-hum about but in the end you love her and you know she is perfect for Kenneth. The love between them is tried again and again and is forged even stronger for all the fire they must walk through. You also get to see some of your favorite members of the guard from previous novels and their wonderful wives. I am very much lookin ...more
Michelle [Helen Geek]
01/10/2013 - 4.5 Stars

I've read all the books this author has written. I've liked them all. This book was one of the better books in this series. I love a good Scottish tale and this author delivers. Every. Single. Time.

Full Review coming soon.
ARC on 10/24/2012.
♡Karlyn P♡
3.5 - I need to think about this one. Good, but not a favorite. Maybe I've hit an end with this series, hard to say. Full review to come soon. ...more
Wow, just wow.

I loved this book and I think it is my favourite ... beside The Chief and the Viper
maybe even before them. This was perfect!
May 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
I liked it ..a lot.. The story is captivating with a real meaning.
Nov 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I thought that Viper was my favorite, now I can't really decide anymore... ...more
Lynsey   (A Bookish Life)
Jul 17, 2012 rated it really liked it
An enjoyable read with great characters and hot sexy times.

McCarty has been a hit or miss author for me. I persevere simply because when it's a hit, it really hits! This was a hit despite one or two niggling irritations. More on that in a second.

This book is the story of  Kenneth Sutherland—a highland warrior already well on his way to becoming one of Bruce's phantoms, following in the footsteps of his late cousin. He's a charmer, a womaniser, too quick to anger, cocky and self-assured and a
Lover of Romance
Kenneth Sutherland is a skilled warrior, and wants to be in the Highland Guard more than anything. He is willing to fight and do whatever it takes to reach his goal. He believes in the fight for Scotland's freedom, and fighting to join the elite warriors will be the greatest battle he will fight. His chance to prove himself to the elite warriors and Bruce, will be at the Highland games. He is so focused on his determination to win, he gets stunned upon meeting Mary of Mar. Mary is a widow, and w ...more
Setting: Scotland, 1309-10

Most of time during reading I spent it feeling infuriated with the heroine, Lady Mary of Mar. I get it once upon a time she's suffered and traumatized a lot but then it doesn't mean she gets to easily make assumptions and quick to judge just because she wanted to protect her said fragile, vulnerable heart. Then, she had a nerve to put a blame on others when she's the first who started it and made it a big fuss. Besides, she has a little understanding on whatsoever, has
Kat ~ Forever Book Lover ♥
You can find this review and more at Forever Book Lover

Oh My!!! You know I drool over Highlanders, and this book made my mouth water!! What an action packed story this was. This is the 6th in the series, many of you can pick this book up and not have to read the previous books, but for me, this series has so much background and information in each book that I am glad I have read each one. Monica does provides plenty of background but why miss out on the other 5 sexy hot highlanders... I say rea
Apr 15, 2012 rated it really liked it
Kenneth of Suherland and Mary of Mar such an emotional,sexy, hot story oh yeah with some great historical fiction too!

Another great book from Monica McCarty, do not miss out!

Kenneth Sutherland wants to be a highland guard andmary of mar just wants to be left alone to try and piece of together what remains of her life, after loosing her first husband to a dearth sentence for treason by king Edward of England ( not like he was any price package!) then on top of that the English king takes her son
This series is getting better and better in each volume! I adored Kenneth and Mary's lovestory. This book was full of surprises and rich of adrenaline! Even the sex scenes were more sensual than the previous volumes. Monica McCarty is a very excellent author who can enthrall the readers with captivating and adventurous stories! ...more
Oct 22, 2012 rated it it was amazing
When I stumbled upon this series I had no idea how very much I would enjoy Monica McCarty's work. I mean most of us do love our Highlanders but this was just oh so very much more.

The Recruit is the sixth book in her Highland Guard series and before I start my review let me first give you a brief synopsis of the series. This description has been taken from Ms McCarty's website.. Just read it, I dare you! I promise just the premise will grab your attention

All About the Highland Guard

Need to get ca
Kristi Hudecek-Ashwill
Aug 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I was reluctant to read this book. I didn't like Kenneth Sutherland in The Saint, the book before this one in the series. He was arrogant, hot tempered, and a loose cannon. But I don't like reading series out of order and this was the next book. I went into it with a heavy heart, but boy, did I get a surprise.

He's always been second at everything and he wants to be the best. The book starts with him competing in the Highland Games. He wants the spot that was now vacant after William Gordon's dea
Oct 22, 2012 rated it really liked it
Good book. This is the first of this series I have read, and though reading the others would help with information about the other characters, it's not necessary. I really enjoyed the setting of the book as I haven't read many from this time period. The characters were well done and I liked learning more of this time in Scotland's history.

Mary has had a rough life so far and she's only twenty-six years old. She was married at fourteen to a man older than she was. She idolized him, as a warrior a
Emanuellen Trizi
Jun 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Well, this one I wasnt expecting to like so much! Kenneth was a pain in the ass in The Saint, so I was with VERY low expectations about it. And it kind of surprised me! I love how he is led to believe that Mary was simple a lady's maid and how furious he were when he found who she really was. And the re-meting was nice too and I was glad that the "secret" wasnt keep from him for too long. Mary is a sweet thing, but too hidden. The blooming part was really lovely and the difference between the Ma ...more
The Recruit was certainly not as awful as The Saint but overall I feel rather meh about it.

Kenneth Sutherland, who has already made an appearance as Helen's brother in the previous book, is actually a pretty decent character. In the preview, he came across as incredibly arrogant and cocksure but he is actually pretty sensitive. Yes, he is one of the best warriors around and women practically throw themselves at him (and he knows and loves it, at first at least) but he actually loathes only being
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What do you get when you mix a legal career, a baseball career, motherhood, and a love of history with a voracious reader? In my case, a Historical Romance Author.

Like most writers, I’ve always loved to read. Growing up in California there was always plenty to do outside, but all too often I could be found inside curled up with a book (or two or three). I started with the usual fare: The Little Ho

Other books in the series

Highland Guard (1 - 10 of 12 books)
  • The Chief (Highland Guard, #1)
  • The Hawk (Highland Guard, #2)
  • The Ranger (Highland Guard, #3)
  • The Viper (Highland Guard, #4)
  • The Saint (Highland Guard, #5)
  • The Hunter (Highland Guard, #7)
  • The Raider (Highland Guard, #8)
  • The Arrow (Highland Guard, #9)
  • The Striker (Highland Guard, #10)
  • The Rock (Highland Guard, #11)

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Happy Women's History Month! One of the undisputedly good things about modern scholarship is that women’s history is finally getting its due....
27 likes · 3 comments
“She entered the hall at the same time he did from the opposite side. With a cry that told her exactly how worried she'd been about him, she raced into his arms.
She could hear the reverberation of his laugh in his chest as he lifted her up and spun her in his arms. Still in his embrace, he set her feet back on the ground and pressed a quick kiss on her lips, the brevity of which she suspected was due to their audience. His voice was low and husky. "Miss me?"

-Kenneth Sutherland & Mary of Mar”
“His gaze pinned her. “I think you’d better reconsider.” Her breath was so tight she barely managed, “Why?” He smiled. “Because I don’t think Felton would like having his wife in my bed, and that’s where you are going to be.” Mary gasped. But he didn’t let her reply. He opened the door and left her standing alone in the room, gaping.” 7 likes
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