Friday, September 19, 2014

Romance Review: The Highlander Next Door (Spellbound Falls #6) by Janet Chapman

From the New York Times bestselling Janet Chapman comes this delightful tale of a young woman who's had enough of men...until she meets her spectacular new neighbor.

Legend has it love is carried on the rising mists of Spellbound Falls, and not even time-traveling highlanders are immune to its magic…

Birch Callahan has seen the trouble men can cause. After witnessing her mother’s four marriages, Birch now runs a women’s shelter and doesn’t want a man in her life. But there’s something about her neighbor, Niall MacKeage. Birch can’t figure out how the cop can be so big and gruff and yet so insightful and compassionate—and sexy. Or how she’s falling for a man who acts like someone from the twelfth century.

Niall knows that Birch is attracted to him, even if she seems to distrust all men. Yet he also knows she has a secret—something that drives her to place herself in harm’s way for the women of her shelter. Niall would gladly rush to Birch’s side to protect her from harm, but with their secrets standing between them, he’ll have to reveal his own truth if he wants to keep her.  

Janet Chapman is the author of twenty-two contemporary and magical romance novels, all of which
are set in her beautiful state of Maine. She lives in a cozy log home on a beautiful lake with her husband, surrounded by an eclectic assortment of wildlife that she finds both entertaining and inspiring. Probably best known for her Highlander Series (a saga of twelfth century warriors rebuilding their clans in modern-day Maine that now spans three generations), Janet also has two spin-off magical series (Midnight Bay & Spellbound Falls) and several contemporary family series set on the coast and in the mountains. With over three million books printed in six languages, her stories regularly appear on the New York Times and USA Today bestseller’s lists.

When she’s not writing (well, when she should to be writing but isn’t), Janet and her husband are traveling the state in their camper throughout all four seasons; hunting, fishing, snowmobiling, and generally rubbing elbows with Mother Nature while always keeping an eye out for colorful new characters—human and beast—to put in her stories.

I am a huge fan of the Spellbound Falls series.  It's light, charming and always so sweet.  The paranormal and time travel elements that Ms. Chapman throws in to the stories make them so much fun to read, and give it an air of nostalgia meets modern day.  

In The Highlander Next Door, Niall is a highlander that's been thrown in to modern day society.  He is slowly learning the ways of the present, and to watch him grow in a world that's completely foreign is so overwhelmingly sweet.  Niall is one of those characters that you love the moment he is introduced.  He's a typical highlander type, and completely dreamy :)  But what he sees in the book's heroine is, quite frankly, beyond me.  

Birch is the heroine.  She's a very strong willed, stubborn woman from the city.  And to be honest... I couldn't stand her.  She treated Niall horribly, she was stand-offish and cold.  As the story progresses, she starts to warm up to you, but in the end, I never truly felt any kind of likeness for her.  I was happy to see Niall end up with his happy ending, but I'd be lying if I said that I was happy it was with Birch.  

The story itself is great.  The setting, as always, is wonderful.  The secondary cast of characters are fantastic.  I love the introduction of the new God (and secretly am hoping his story will quickly follow this one!).  Overall, the book was good.  But it could have been GREAT if it hadn't been for Birch.  Something about her just seriously rubs me the wrong way.  

As a fan of this series, I can honestly say this wasn't my favorite one yet.  But it's definitely worth the read, and is a nice addition to the series.  I'm looking forward to what comes next!  

Rating:  3.5 stars 

I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.  All conclusions reached are my own.   


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