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UNSOLVED: One specific book > Historical fiction: Young Scot returns to Highlands and old man tells story of mute girl and a romance that gets caught up in clan war

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message 1: by Amy (last edited Dec 16, 2018 06:48PM) (new)

Amy (zierah) | 2 comments ***POSSIBLE SPOILERS***

A young Scotsman who is now (early/mid 1900s?) a politician or lawyer or something of the sort in a large city in the UK (most likely London?) and who I believe is recently engaged (could be wrong here..) returns to the highlands to contemplate his future and travels up to a cabin where an old man (possibly named Duncan? Or maybe it was an old woman but I think it was an old man) tells him stories from hundreds of years ago about the Scottish clans. One of the stories that really stood out to me was one about a highland girl (1600s or earlier possibly?) who was mute all her life (maybe because something traumatic happened when she was little/family killed? I can’t remember) and she befriends a boy from another clan (that she shouldn’t be talking to as their clans have bad blood or something maybe?) and they secretly meet up and as they grow up they fall in love. When she is a young woman, another clan betrays them and they capture the boy she loves and she thinks he’s dead but they come out of a cabin and throw him on the snow and she screams his name the first word she’s uttered in forever. She works to save some of her remaining clan as the traitors ravage her village and the boy possibly leaves to go get some of his clan to help? I think one of the clans was the Campbells, possibly they were the clan that betrayed the other? Also I remember that the old man who told the stories was burning peat moss and the narrator remarked upon it that it was an old tradition to burn it for heat and he noted the smell. The story that the old man told about the mute girl was told in three parts throughout the book, or possibly he told three different stories to the guy who kept returning to visit him. The stories were a supplement to the main story which I cannot recall, as I may have gotten bored and skipped it.
I didn’t finish the book as I had to return it to the library. It was in historical fiction section of a library in Penacola Florida around 2009 but the book was most likely written in 1800s to early 1900s. It may have been written by George MacDonald or someone similar to him who likes to write fiction about Scotland and Scottish history. If it isn’t by George MacDonald it was grouped with his books in the library as same genre. I thought it may be The Laird’s Inheritance (Warlock o Glenwarlock) but the descriptions seem not quite right and I haven’t been able to find a copy to check. I have been looking for this book for over ten years and have not been able to find it again.

message 2: by ``Laurie (new)

``Laurie (laurielynette) | 1039 comments Here's a guess that matches a couple of your details:

Lorna Doone

message 3: by Amy (new)

Amy (zierah) | 2 comments Laurie, Thanks for the suggestion. I looked it up on Gutenberg, and it does not seem to be a match, unfortunately. I may still read it, thought, as I enjoy novels about old Scotland. :)

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