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Thorn in My Heart

Average Rating 4.5
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Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 41 review with 5 star rating   See All Ratings
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  • Posted September 27, 2011

    The thorn in your heart

    This is the first book of threebbook series. It is loosely based of the story of Jacob from the Bible set in the late 1800 in Scotland. It is about two sisters who are in love with the same man, Jamie, who got tricked into marrying the sister that he doesn't love, Leana. Jamie makes a pact with the father that he had work for seven months in ordernto be able to divorce Leana to marry Rose. I can almost feel the pain, the tears, the stress, and undying love that isn't return by the man that you love. All she has is the faith in her God to get her through. I highly recommend this series.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 29, 2011

    Wonderful Retelling of Jacob, Leah, & Rachel's Story

    Thorn in My Heart by Liz Curtis Higgs is a 1700s Scottish retelling of the Biblical story of Jacob, Leah, & Rachel. It is also the first of four books in the Lowlands of Scotland Series.

    From the very beginning the book is filled with plot twists and deceptions. I won't give them away here but if you are familiar with the Biblical account then you will probably be able to figure most of them out. However, I was pleasantly surprised with how Higgs handled them in their historical contest. For example, in the Bible Jacob takes two wives. However, during the 1700s in Scotland polygamy would have been frowned up and would not have been a plausible solution to the little Scottish love triangle.

    Thorn in My Heart is alternately written from the viewpoints of Jamie McKie and Leana McBride. Both characters are strong and carry the story well. It is also to see the story from Leana's (Biblical Leah) point of view. It makes you really stop and think what this all must have been like for her. What was she feeling? Was she a willing participant in the deception or was she a mere victim of circumstances?

    Liz Curtis Higg's descriptive writing style brings you right into the story from the very first pages. Whether you are raptly reading of Jamie and Evan's births or nearing the climactic ending you will feel like you are really there. Her writing also helps you relate to the characters in a very real way. You genuinely feel bad for those who are overlooked and mistreated because you care about what happens to them. They are very real. And if you're not careful you'll feel so in touch with Scotland that you will be tempted to start saying 'Nae' or call people 'bonnie'.

    When I first opened the book I wasn't sure what to think. I don't particularly care for the story of Jacob getting wives and the quarrel between the sisters. I was even less sure about the story when I discovered that the brunt of the story would be written from Leah's point of view. Now I am glad that I kept reading because it was definitely worth every minute! So whether you are curious about seeing this story from another side or you just love Scottish history, I recommend that you read Thorn in My Heart. You will absolutely love this book!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 28, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    A Yearning to Read Review

    Important note: I wrote this review before I'd read the second book. The second book, Fair is the Rose, was terrible and unrealistic and depressing. I'm actually a HUGE fan of tragedies and depressing books, but this one was just stupidly depressing. Things happened that shouldn't have happened. So while I love this book, I strongly disliked the second book.

    To anyone who has read the story of Jacob and Rachel in the Bible, this is a familiar story. To me, it was like looking at the back of my hand - at least, for the first seventy-five pages or so. Up until that point the story is almost exactly like the Bible story, only, of course, in a different setting and era. But as soon as Jamie arrives at Auchengray, I was at a loss to what would happen. The Bible story is written without the many details of your average love story; it gives only the details needed, those that are important. However, to create a whole novel based on this story, Liz Curtis Higgs had to add things. Some may have been true, and some may not have been. However, Higgs fills her story with her own bright and lovely characters, a few of her own twists and turns, and and ending that you'll never forget, and one that will make you go wild to get the second one in your hands.
    For one thing, this story very plainly shows deep and thoroughly felt emotions. Jamie, Leana, and Rose are all wronged in the story, creating strife, anger, love, jealousy, and ravaging terror. As you read it your emotions will change with the emotions of the character you are reading about at the moment; and then, when time comes to change perspective, you will feel exactly what that character is feeling. Your view of the story will change multiple times; you will suddenly think completely differently about things that you once believed to be true; your eyes will be opened and all you will be able to do is keep reading.
    Liz Curtis Higgs is very learned in Irish culture and is also very skilled with her pen. Lord knows how she was able to create such an intricate story of deceit and love and forgiveness while still keeping as close to the Bible story as possible, and giving the character more life than many authors ever dream of. As I stand thoroughly impressed, I highly recommend this hearty story of a braw lad and two of the bonniest lasses in Ireland.
    (This book is an older romance novel; recommended for adults. Several scenes involve a couple's marriage bed and certain difficulties with this that have arisen from another character's deceitfulness. While these scenes are not, in a sense, explicit, they are at the very least very sensual.)

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 16, 2011


    i really love this book and i can't think of any other that i like more. The story is amazing. leana's story is heartbreaking and it kept me hooked from the very first page. I feel like I need to say that the sex scene in my opinion was tastefully done and I would like to add that there is nothing wrong with a little sex ladies. Sex is not a dirty thing. For those of us who are Christians i'd like to say loosen up a little. This is not one of those dirty romance novels. And I would like to remind everyone that there is sex in the actual biblical account between Leah and Jacob. All in all I love this book. I can't wait to see what Liz comes up with next.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 2, 2008

    A reviewer

    This is an amazing book. The author has an incredible way to truly draw you into the lives of the characters. As each twist in the story takes place, your heart just hurts for the character, whether you think that they were right or wrong. Even if their actions caused the consequences, you really feel for Leana, Rose, and Jamie. I was completely upset the first time I read it because I did not know that it was a continuation and I had to wait until the next book came out. The following two were amazing as well. I re-read the biblical account of Jacob, Leah, and Rachel in Genesis once I finished the series and there is quite a bit of meaning that I had originally overlooked. Well-done!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 14, 2014


    Amazing story!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 11, 2013

    Buy this now

    Great book

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  • Posted March 20, 2013

    A historical retelling of the story of Jacob, Rachel, and Leah f

    A historical retelling of the story of Jacob, Rachel, and Leah from the Bible set in the Scotland lowlands that is one of my favorite series. The author makes an old story new by making you take a second look at at familiar characters but maybe not as you have before. One thing that may be a drawback to others (I love it) is the author uses old Scottish words in the story. There is a dictionary at the back of the book and many of the words you can figure out from context. To me to fun learning new words.

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  • Posted September 6, 2012

    Highly Recommend

    I enjoyed this book so much. One of the best novels I've ever read. I just started reading Fair is the Rose and it promises to be just as good!

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  • Posted July 20, 2012


    This is the kind of book I long for. Even though it is completely out of my experiential range, I felt like I had been transported to a different time and place. I could hardly get anything else done because I wanted to get back and continue reading. I can't wait to continue the series!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 25, 2011

    A Must Read!

    I thoroughly enjoyed this entire series. It is the best ive read in a long time. I love how she compared it to the Bible story about isaac and rebekah and their descendants.

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  • Posted August 11, 2011

    Love the book, but the Nook Version should be better edited.

    I loved this book by one of my favourite authors, and when it didn't come back after being lent out, I bought myself the Nook version. I'm sorry I spent the money on that instead of buying another hard copy because the editing on the Nook version was poorly done. I haven't gotten past the first chapter because the errors are distracting. So, while I recommend anything by Liz Curtis Higgs without reservation, I cannot recommend the Nook version of this book.

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  • Posted February 17, 2011


    Evem though it's long, it's worth the read. A story of grace and sacrifice.

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  • Posted November 7, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    check it out

    this is the first book in liz's series that i have previously reviewd. this book is the beggining of the great books she will write for this series. reading this one can and i believe will open your heart to the emotional trials the people must have gone through. also if you end up loving this and even if you dont you should check out julie lessman's series... especially her most recent book a passion denied!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 29, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Wonderful Novel

    This book was great! I love how the author detailed the history of Jacob, Leah, and Rachel from the Bible....filling in the blanks. Brilliant!! Some people misunderstand that concept. My heart goes out to Leana because from day one she fell in love with Jamie, and ever since then her mind has been played Rose, her father, and even sometimes Jamie. I just felt so bad for her. The ending made me tear up a bit. Lol. Very good book. I'm in the middle of reading "Fair is the Rose" which is excellent also.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 13, 2008


    i absolutely adore dthis book and the other two, but i did think it was rather unfair of the author to make Leana seem like she was more 'in the right' than Rose. personally, i liked Rose better and felt for her more than i did Leana. overall, i love this series, i highly suggest it!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 13, 2005

    wonderful, captivating

    This is my first book by Liz Curtis Higgs and it was a joy to read. I was captured from the first page and could not put the book down until I was finished. My heart went out to Leanna and cheered her on despite her betrayal and deception. I had to keep reminding myself to not criticize and loathe Rose so much even though she is selfish and self-centered, since she was in fact innocent to all that has happened to her. Jaime should be considered a very weak man having himself being manipulated and deceived so easily by every character in the book. He deserves all that has happened to him. The trials and tribulations throughout the book, not to mention the unbearable sorrows and disappointments will keep you riveted and entertained to the end.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 4, 2005

    A Seamless Scottish Tale!

    Thorn in My Heart is the first book I¿ve read by Liz Curtis Higgs, and I¿ll be reading more. I love historical fiction, and she did a fabulous job with this one. My favorite part about this book is the way she uses Scottish dialect and makes it perfectly understandable, either through context or with a seamless explanation. The story is that of Leah, Rachel, and Jacob, taken from Genesis 27-29 in the Bible. I wondered how she would translate that into 18th century Scotland and make it work. The author¿s notes at the end reveal her secret¿she researched the location and time period thoroughly, which lends the story an authentic feel. She weaves in Scottish traditions and lore without making readers feel they¿re steeped in a history lesson. Higgs treats readers to the unusual viewpoint of Leana (Leah), who is typically the unsympathetic character in the Bible. Here we get a taste of what it might have been like for Leah, Jacob¿s spurned wife. Jaime (Jacob) steals his brother Evan¿s birthright from their aging father. When Evan threatens to kill Jaime, he and his parents decide he must escape to his uncle¿s home and marry one of his two cousins, either Leana (Leah) or Rose (Rachel), and sire an heir. Thoughtful, intelligent Leana is swept off her feet from the moment she sets eyes on Jaime. Rose¿s delight knows no bounds, because she has no intention of marrying at age fifteen. Rose does her best to act as matchmaker for Jaime and Leana, but Jaime only has eyes for Rose, who notices his charms too late. One moment Jaime¿s thoughtless actions dash Leana¿s hopes for a relationship, and the next moment, the smallest crumb of his attention raises her hopes again. Both Rose and their father, Lachlan (Laban), encourage Leana to be forthright with Jaime, with disastrous consequences. Through all this, Higgs masterfully lets us dwell in the minds of the completely sympathetic characters, so we understand not only their motives, but also their joys and frustrations. The sisters¿ love and devotion to each other, and their heartbreak at the outcome brought about by their scheming father, touched a chord in me. Thorn in My Heart gave me a fresh perspective on the agony two girls who lived nearly four millennia ago must have endured in such trying circumstances. However, the Bible gives us evidence that even in the struggle Leana/Leah faced, God held her in His arms, close to His heart. I highly recommend this book. Stay tuned for reviews of Fair as the Rose and Whence Comes a Prince.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 2, 2004

    wonderful love story!

    in my whole life,i've never read a book in 1 day save this one!i just could'nt put it down!i love it!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 29, 2004

    The most amazing book ever!!!!

    This is the most amazing book i have ever read!!! I was captivated from the very beginning, and totally identified with each of the characters, especially Leana. I felt as if I were living her life, and laughed when she laughed and cried when she cried. I can't say enough about how wonderful this book is!

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