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The Heart of the Highlands: The Beast

(Protectors of the Crown #1)

4.14  ·  Rating details ·  277 ratings  ·  40 reviews
For hundreds of years, Scotland has battled the English for their freedom. Now, they face a new, unforeseen threat. In a divided world between politics and religion, the young King James V faces a threat from his own people. As civil wars break out amongst the highland clans, James recruits a secret group of warriors for protection. He calls them, the Protectors of the Cro ...more
Kindle Edition, 325 pages
Published July 25th 2015 by Grey Eagle Publishing, LLC
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4.14  · 
Rating details
 ·  277 ratings  ·  40 reviews

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Nicole Laverdure
Will keep you spellbound! 6 stars

I was swept away by The Heart of the Highlands: The Beast, written by April Holthaus. I consider The BEAST a masterpiece! Amazing debut for the Protectors of the Crown series. I was so mesmerized that I finished it in 2 days! Lovers of Highlands adventures will be very pleased with this story. The Beast is so captivating that it will grab you from the very first page and will keep you captive until the very end! This story is a perfect Scottish historical romance
Jessica W
Dec 27, 2016 rated it it was amazing
It's so easy to love this book if you are into romance novels that take place in medieval Scotland. This book has everything a great romance novel should have. The characters are well developed and you find yourself caring about them almost immediately. The story and language are historically accurate for the time and place. The plot is interesting and full of political intrigue. The romance develops naturally and the love scenes are steamy and passionate.

One of the things I often find lacking
Kimi Court
Jul 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is great. It has mystery, action, good ol fashion fighting. Twists and turns. This author does a great job at making the characters come alive and jump out at you. The story line itself is really good and keeps you wanting to read more and more. Reading till wee hours in the morning.

Have you ever read a book so good that you felt empty inside when you are done reading it? You felt it was ripped from you and needed that feeling again? That's what it was for me at the end. I was so into
Jul 07, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
WOW! Another awesome Historical Romance. A must read!!

Another hit by the amazing author. Fast paced Scottish Medieval Historical Romance. A new and exciting series.
I absolutely loved the characters, the storyline and of course, the idea of flawed characters who are honor and duty bound. Filled with passion, treason, danger, love and romantic intrigue. Another must read! Fans of Medieval Scottish Romance, and Historical Romance are sure to love "The Beast". Has everything a fan of Historical Roma
April   ♥"LOS" ♥
Wonderfully written

I do love a good Highlander book and this one did not disappoint!
While Kiera and Ian get off to a rocky start, watching their relationship develop throughout the book was simply magical.
Jul 27, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I couldn't put this one down. You can't go wrong with April's books. I look forward to the next in the series.
David Watson
Dec 04, 2017 rated it really liked it
Times are hard in Scotland, a civil war is going on over politics and religion. Also England and France have a big influence over what is happening in the Highlands. With all the civil unrest, people are becoming victims of circumstance and have to deal with conflicts they have no control over. One of those people is Keira Sinclair. Keira had a simple life but with her clan about to lose everything she is offered in an arranged marriage to a Laird of a neighboring clan. She has to leave the only ...more
Dec 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I wasn’t sure I was going to enjoy this one. I mean, I judge books on the cover and figured this was going to be a romance but I am happy to admit – I was wrong (not 100% wrong but wrong enough to be so glad I read this book.)

I did not want this book to end. I want it to go on forever and I can only hope that book two in the series is a continuation of book one because I loved all the characters and want to follow their lives forever!

While this was a romance, it was also action and suspense – sn
Nov 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing

I am sure so many of you already know how much I LOVE historical romances. This is especially true for Scottish historical romances, I love the language, the strength in the characters and of course the romance!

This novel had everything I love about historical romances set in the Highlands and more with an amazing plot that kept you guessing as to what would happen next. In this novel, we have Keira a young woman who has been forced to wed a man that she does not love all because her clan is abo
Ara Prado
Nov 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
When I opened the book, I never expected the story to turn out the way it did, and that's a good thing. Sometimes, when you've read one too many romance books, it can be quite predictable. And I'm glad Heart of the Highlands: The Beast broke away from that mould.

I definitely enjoyed every minute I spend reading it and getting to know it's characters. I felt excited, nervous, scared, curious, maybe a bit turned on *cough cough* all while absorbed in the intricate storyline of Heart of the Highla
Fee (Ebook Addicts)
Dec 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: arc, read-in-2017
This is my first time reading any of April's books and I can honestly say I am hooked. After reading Heart of the Highlands it is clear that she has done a lot or research into Scotland and Scottish history, and you will find yourself transported back to the medieval reign of King James V .

The places, the characters and the story - I just fell in love with them all and I couldn't put this book down, I was reading it into the wee small hours. I have to be honest and say that I am not much or a hi
Brandi Shaffer
Oct 08, 2015 rated it really liked it
This was a sweet highlander romance book. The characters got to know each other then fell in love. So it's not an insta love, it's a slow build up to their relationship. At first they don't even like each other. I liked their banter back and forth. I also like how the author made the lead lady innocent but not helpless. Sometimes authors try to make their women innocent but they end up looking like pathetic helpless women that are just stupid. This author was able to make her lead lady innocent, ...more
Angela Withrow TheArdentReader
Keira Sinclair is a bonny Highland lass, who is content to remain with her father and her sisters. Her father, however, has other ideas and sees her as a pawn for his own use. Since Keira's mother's death, he has been a changed man. No longer caring about his daughters.
Laird Magnus Sinclair had decided to wed his oldest daughter to another clan Laird that he sees as a good ally. Magnus has sold off all of the land that he could, he must use his daughters to advantage for the good of the clan.
Aug 24, 2016 rated it really liked it
Keira Sinclair is unexpectedly kidnapped while travelling to meet her betrothed, Laird Thomas Chisholm on what was supposed to have been her wedding day. Her captor, Ian MacKay, seems like a hardened warrior, yet his gruff manner hints at an underlying gentleness that inspires Keira to trust him. Ian's heart, still bruised by the death of his wife eight years ago, longs for Keira while his mind tells him the fiery lass is a complication he cannot afford while still working as a Protector of Scot ...more
Janice Hougland
Jun 23, 2016 rated it it was amazing
What a detailed Highland romance this was, full of action and intrigue along with a truly lovely romance between Ian, a widower who was slow to give his heart to another woman, and Keira, a pawn caught between a traitor and her cold-hearted father who literally “gave” her to the traitor in exchange for land and safety. Fate had another plan for Keira, however, as the chance encounter between Ian and Keira as she traveled to her traitorous husband-to-be was the start of their friendship and devot ...more
Jul 26, 2015 rated it really liked it
Keira was being forced into marriage because of her father's poor decisions and she is given three men's names that she can choose from. Two of them were very unsuitable, so she choose the Laird Thomas Chisholm even though she had never seen him before. She had no idea that he was a mean man and ruthless and Keira was put into a carriage to be taken to Chisholm. Ian and his men had been attacked and when he got away from them, he happened upon Chisholm's carriage coming down the road. Ian kidnap ...more
Feb 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Hard exteriors are often protective mechanisms

Keira is sent off by her father to marry a man she has yet to meet. This arrangement was made she believes to protect her family, their lands and create a strong alliance. On her way to her betrothed her carriage is intercepted by Ian and his men, protectors of the crown. Ian is viewed as quite the beast by Keira, that is until she gets to know and understand him. There are quite a few twists and turns to the plot of the story making for a very inter
Jul 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Great Story! What an amazing way to start a series. It had all the right ingredients to make a winning story; adventure, intrigue, passion, and unexpected twists. I loved how both Ian and Keira interacted with each other and how their love and respect for each each other grows page by page. I also liked all the secondary characters and I look forward to see more of them in the sequels! I received an advanced copy from the author in exchange for an honest review.
Belinda Clemons
Jul 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This was a very good book to read. highlanders are some of my favorite heroes to read about and April created great characters in Ian and Keira. I won an advanced copy from her and I'm so glad I did this book had adventure and passion secrets and intrigue. I just love it when the heroine gets kidnapped. By the hero that's one of my favorite story lines. I can't wait to read about the other Protectors of the Crown men April sure has created a great start to a great series
Aug 24, 2015 rated it really liked it
Copyright Night Owl Reviews

Heart of the Highlands: The Beast reminded me why I love historical romances and need to read more of them! This book will take you back in time, to the days of King Henry the VIII.

See my full review at:
InD'tale Magazine
“Heart of the Highlands” is a dashing glimpse into lives of honorable Highlanders during the middle ages.

Read full review in the 2015 November issue of InD'tale Magazine.
Joan Osborne
Jul 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wonderful Highland romance

This was a wonderful Highland romance that kept me riveted throughout. Keira was a strong and loving heroine and Ian was a brave valiant warrior and I truly enjoyed their story. Highly recommend this book!
shirlene brown
Aug 02, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The protectior of Scotland

April holthaus has done a excellent job on this story about this woman who was to marry someone else but was safe from that by a highlander. I give this story a four star rating for the story line and the character in this story.
Jul 22, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Heart of the Highlands

This book was setting up the series and gave background on the clans involved. Looking forward to seeing how the clans and sisters evolve.
cindy Brunette
Dec 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Heart of the Highlands

Great book loved the story line and the characters. If you love romance novels you will love this book. I will definitely read more books from this author.
patricia diggs
Jun 02, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

Loved this book interesting till the end you will love the storyline I will be trading more from this author
Marilyn R.
Dec 13, 2017 rated it really liked it
While it does not involve time travel, Heart of the Highlands echoes the very popular Outlander series. It is also a historical romance set in Scotland with the main characters a strong female, Keira, caught up in world affairs she does not understand and a Highland warrior, Ian, who captures her on route to her arranged marriage.

What follows is a slow unfolding of the politics and loyalties of the clans as Ian and Keira hearts slowly open to their growing attraction. Who to trust and where saf
Dec 10, 2017 rated it liked it
I have read quite a few historical romances by this point and have come to realize what I like and dislike about this genre. Although it seems that all of these books have the same plot, its the execution that matters and Holthaus did an excellent job with this book. It had the perfect mix of romance and history and this book did seem pretty authentic. A lot of the time the way the characters conduct themselves and the time period don’t mesh well, but this book didn’t have that problem.

The plot
Dec 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
Absolutely amazing, I read this book over night and it did not disappoint. The story immediately draws you in and you are hooked right till the very end.

The characters are well developed you feel like you actually got to know them.
The story is so intriguing from being betrothed to an enemy of the crown, the truth about Keira’s father, Ian’s mission, a secret band of men know as “the protectors” … how much more can you ask for. It’s a fast paced novel that has everything in it including a beauti
Terry Hammoutene
Dec 10, 2017 rated it really liked it
This was a great read it has romance, action, and some suspense. Keira is a strong woman that is being used as a pawn by her father and luckily she is saved by Ian. The journey begins one way and ends in complete opposite.

This was a fun book to read

** I received a copy of this book for an honest review**
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April lives in central Minnesota. April developed her passion of historical romances from her love of history and geneaology. She has complied over 350+ grandparents of her direct bloodline dating back to 1100s.

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