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All art is unstable. It's meaning is not necessarily that implied by the author, There is no authorative active voice. There are only multiple readings. David Bowie, 1995

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Secrets exposed!



                           

The MacNeil Legacy, where the 1860's Highlands and the New World intersect continues with Fletcher's younger half brother Duncan MacNeil. Since his arrival at the Isle of Hedabarr, Duncan has been out of step; a misplaced, bored, half Commache lad who's as handsome as sin, and as ready to indulge in as much of that as the young women of the island will allow. A recipe for disaster! In the end Fletcher, Duke of Kintyre reluctantly allows Duncan to return to the land he's missing. Just before leaving Duncan spends a few hours after the village fair with a gullible young woman Isobel Dunbar. Alcohol and experimentation equal seduction. Personally I find the young Duncan to be a thoughtless scoundrel.
Isobel falls pregnant from that unwise moment. A husband lost at sea is invented and all goes well for ten years. 
Duncan returns from Texas ready to take up the family business. Looking for a site for a cannery that will provide work for the locals, Duncan fixes his sights aonthe run down property owned by Isobel. And so the two meet again. That leads of course to Duncan discovering Isobel's secret. I know, things eventually work out, but I still find the more mature Duncan is high handed and insensitive even with the flashbacks to his part in the civil war in Texas.
I frankly did not like Duncan as a youngster and am not that fond of him now. Even after Duncan's return to the Island with an obvious maturity and emotional growth, I wasn't that pleased with him. Duncan and Isobel's story, and the secondary stories feel somewhat contrived. That include events and entanglements involving secondary characters. Mysteries are uncovered and neatly tied coincidences trip over each.
Still the family continues to be of interest and I still find Fenella to be my favourite character.

A NetGalley ARC

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