A Highlander Walks into a Bar: A Highland, Georgia Novel

A Highlander Walks into a Bar: A Highland, Georgia Novel

by Laura Trentham

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The timeless romance, soaring passion—and gorgeous men—of Scotland come to modern-day America. And the rules of love will never be the same…

Isabel Buchanan is fiery, funny, and never at a loss for words. But she is struck speechless when her mother returns from a trip to Scotland with a six-foot-tall, very handsome souvenir. Izzy’s mother is so infatuated by the fellow that Izzy has to plan their annual Highland Games all by herself. Well, not completely by herself. The Highlander’s strapping young nephew has come looking for his uncle…

Alasdair Blackmoor has never seen a place as friendly as this small Georgia town—or a girl as brilliant and beguiling as Izzy. Instead of saving his uncle, who seems to be having a lovely time, Alasdair decides he’d rather help Izzy with the Highland Games. Show her how to dance like a Highlander. Drink like a Highlander. And maybe, just maybe, fall in love with a Highlander. But when the games are over, where do they go from here?

“Laura Trentham creates a romance that is both extremely sensual and phenomenal.”
Fresh Fiction

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781250315014
Publisher: St. Martin''s Publishing Group
Publication date: 07/30/2019
Series: Highland, Georgia , #1
Pages: 320
Sales rank: 70,333
Product dimensions: 4.10(w) x 6.60(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Laura Trentham is an award-winning author of contemporary and historical romance, including Then He Kissed Me and The Military Wife. She is a member of RWA, and has been a finalist multiple times in the Golden Heart competition. A chemical engineer by training and a lover of books by nature, she lives in South Carolina.

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A Highlander Walks into a Bar: A Highland, Georgia Novel 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 71 reviews.
Anonymous 6 days ago
This author was new to me, but the premise looked fun and I'm a sucker for clever titles, so I bought the book. I had no idea I'd have so much fun! Izzy is a wonderful heroine with believable neuroses, foibles and talents with a strong love for her mother, her home and her hometown. Alasdair is equally conflicted and similarly afflicted with the same loyalties, but when they meet, it's neither contrived that the hate each other, nor do they instantly bond over their similar circumstances. We get to know them through their encounters with each other, as well as with his uncle and her mother: the reason they are brought together in the first place. The story moves along at a leisurely pace without bogging down or repetitious scenes of mistrust, lust and sex. It's an almost PG book, with the one big bedroom scene about 2/3 of the way through. I read steamier stuff, but this approaches seemed right for the tone of the book. The secondary characters play some important roles in the plot. They are well-drawn, with no one being either stereotypical or one-sided. It's easy to like them as well. I found myself rooting for Izzy and Alasdair early in the book simply because I liked them. Not once did I feel like yelling at the book for making a plot point or conflict so obvious a first grader could see it. I did begin to figure out the resolution earlier than hinted at, but that it no way detracted from the satisfaction of getting there. The book is not the Great Southern Novel that Izzy wants to write, but it is a dreamy, lighthearted and fun diversion that I couldn't put down. I hope Izzy and Alasdair pop up in other books in the series. I'm off to find out.
PegC51 19 days ago
This is a story absolutely filled with fun from the moment that Rose Buchanan announces to her daughter Isabel she has brought back “something” from her trip to Scotland to Fiona showing up to help Alasdair and Gareth work through the mistakes they have made on the road to happy ever after. Although it is clear that Rose and Gareth care very much for each other and even after she and Alasdair begin to care for each other, Isabel doesn’t trust Gareth and Alasdair. She has reason not to trust the handsome Scots; the Blackmoor men are keeping secrets. When they come to light, will the women understand and be willing to forgive? What could be more fun than falling in love with a handsome Highlander that at a Highland Games Festival? This is a light and entertaining story with a lot of laughs. It all takes place in the small town of Highland, Georgia during the preparation for the annual Highland Festival. There is a delightful cast of characters. Isabel and Alasdair are uptight and serious, except during their alone time. Rose and Gareth are mellow and easy going. Traveling through Highland and meeting the townspeople is a treat. The festival itself is great. I thoroughly enjoyed reading A Highlander Walks Into a Bar. If like romance and want a good laugh, I recommend this one. I received an ARC of this book from the publisher via NetGalley. My review is voluntary.
Anonymous 19 days ago
This is a charming, funny Highlander-centric read set in Georgia. Highlanders in the South. When Izzy's mom returns from her vacay with a Highlander in tow, she's resigned to planning their towns Highlander Games with the help of Alisdair Blackmoor, the nephew of her moms Highlander crush. Alisdair came to America to rescue his uncle, only to embrace the Highland games, ways and he definitely wants to embrace Izzy. Recommend.
RachaelBrown 19 days ago
I love the fun, flirty relationship between Isabel and Alasdair. They are both great characters, and Isabel's friend Anna is hilarious. Neither Isabel nor Anna have a filter, which creates some funny scenarios. I absolutely loved A Highlander Walks into a Bar, and I can't wait to see what happens next in Highland, Georgia. I voluntarily read and reviewed a complimentary Advance Reader Copy from NetGalley.
Madm007 19 days ago
I loved the whole concept, the story, and the Highland Games. Great reading thru most of it. Started out strong with dashes of humor. Izzy's Mom saying she brought home a surprise, a 6' brawny Silver Scot certainly qualifies as one h*ll of a surprise, lol! I did get bogged down a bit as Izzy replayed her own thoughts and history, or going thru what ifs, she had a very active mind. I like a faster pace, which most of the story was. Her unfiltered mouth was a highlight which made me laugh or champion for the truth. When her and Alasdair met neither trusting the other, they each had a lot to figure out, but annoyingly they were very attracted to each other and sparks never lie. I truly enjoyed their cohesion, good stuff, no matter the scenario, humor always lurking. The truth no matter what, is something I applaud in a read, so I was disappointed with both Alasdair and his Uncle Gareth for not trusting these women sooner, but then Alasdair in a kilt competing in the Highland games as if his life depended on it, was pretty freakin awesome, just to get back in Izzy's good graces. All finally worked out fantastically and this was somewhat a double romance with HEAs. I received an advance reader's copy thru Netgalley and am giving my honest opinions voluntarily
Morgan_S 23 hours ago
4.5 stars! This was such a cute but angsty romance, with a southern girl and a sexy Scotsman who has come to America to claim his uncle and escort him home, only to find his uncle has fallen in love! Because of this there were two couples in the story, Gareth and Rose and Alasdair and Izzy; it was cool to see the parallel but with age differences and varying levels of wisdom. Alasdair and Izzy were a sizzling slow burn with moments of combustion! Even though I was aggravated with Alasdair for keeping secrets, I understand why he did. I was ecstatic that Izzy went after what she wanted, once she decided to let herself be happy and enjoy life. Her vibrant personality drew me in, just like it did Alasdair. I would have liked the epilogue to be more focused on the people within this story, but it is nice to know who the next story will focus on, and I'm excited to read it! Pick this up if you love southern culture, Scottish culture/history, and off the charts chemistry as well as internal conflict!
Anonymous 3 days ago
I bought the book basked on the reviews. I am disappointing because I was expecting more. The book started off well and went downhill soon afterwards, It is a very easy read, predictable and I am not sure if she has done enough research on the behaviors of the characters. Nothing is making you hold onto the book.
AmyHi 4 days ago
Delightful read! Isabel, the heroine, is trying to protect her widowed mother, Rose, from being taken advantage of by a Scotsman named Gareth. Alasdair, the hero, is trying to prevent his Uncle Gareth from being taking advantage of by Isabel’s mother. A great HEA, I can’t wait to read the next in the series. I received an ARC for my honest review.
Fredreeca2001 4 days ago
Izzy is all bent out of shape…her mother has just returned from Scotland with a handsome gentleman in tow! This further complicates matters when her mother is “too busy” with her Scotsman to help with the annual festival. Then along comes Alasdair, another a HOT Highlander! He enjoys teaching Izzy a thing or two! I just love Alasdair. I can just hear his Scottish brogue in my mind. Oooolala! And Izzy, she is a hot mess. These two really have it going on. They have some cute, flirty moments that will have you laughing out loud. Plus, Alasdair has kept somethings from Izzy. This just adds to the apprehension of their relationship. This is a charming, cute, funny adorable story! The characters are charismatic and entertaining. Great for a beach read…or heck…an anytime read! I received this novel from St. Martin’s Press for a honest review.
Virginiaw 6 days ago
This is an enjoyable start to a new series. This is a modern town in Georgia that has a Scottish festival every year which sounds like a good time. It was fun to see what all goes in to setting up a festival like this. I enjoyed the characters and how they fell in love. I received a copy of this book from zest. Martin’s Publicity for a fair and honest opinion that I gave of my own free will.
MLH438 7 days ago
When Rose Buchanan told her daughter, Isabel that she had "brought home a surprise" from her vacation, Isabel was in for a shock. "Lord have mercy, her mother had brought back a six-foot, two-hundred-pound-plus souvenir from Scotland" So begins Laura Trentham's delightfully charming A Highlander Walks Into a Bar. Rose's "souvenir" is Gareth "Connors", who is actually Gareth Blackmoor and a bonafide Earl. He told Rose he was the caretaker of his estate, as he was burned by women only interested in his title and enjoys that Rose sees the man and not the title. Enter Alasdair Blackmoor, a London investment analyst who is Gareth's nephew and heir. He has come to Highland after his mother asked him to go after Gareth and rescue him from the "American tart." After he arrives in Highland and meets Isabel, attraction sparks between them too! Trentham's writing is very entertaining and enjoyable. She skillfully builds the romance between the two couples, steering them to a HEA. You will also love all the characters of Highland, Georgia. I heartily recommend it!
blonde_betty 7 days ago
A Highlander Walked Into a Bar by Laura Trentham does not actually involve highlanders walking into bars, but it does involve highland games and lots of references to Scotland. The mother falls in love with rakish older man storyline was fun, but it was Izzy and Alasdair who stole the show. I can’t wait for future visits to Highland. I voluntarily reviewed an ARC of this novel.
Hfowler 7 days ago
This was such a sweet, romantic, and humorous story. Izzy just said everything that came to mind and what she said was always funny and kept Alistair on his toes the whole time. He did need his world shaken up, and she was perfect for that job. I loved their chemistry and interactions. They had plenty of passion and sweet moments and the emotional tension at the end when his secrets came out added to the reader’s ability to connect with Izzy. She was fierce!  The story was great, entertaining, and a jewel among contemporary romances. But that is what I expect from Laura Trentham, and I wasn’t disappointed.
Maria Carpenter 7 days ago
Snoozed my way out of this one. Not sure I should call it a read...maybe a skim?!? Should have a category for that on Goodreads. Read, but kinda not?! BORING! I think that sums this up. If the liars in the story would have just told the truth and stopped lamenting they were lying and how they hated being lied to...........oh sorry fell asleep there again. Could have been a great book liked the premise of it, execution not so much. Received a copy from the publisher for an honest review.
KivicCT140 10 days ago
I absolutely adored A HIghlander Walks into a Bar by Laura Trentham. Wonderful likeable characters with off the charts chemistry, great dialogue and laugh out loud funny. I loved both Isabel and Alasdair. Now I'm eagerly awaiting the next book.
Anonymous 11 days ago
I enjoyed this book very much. It had everything I love... laughs, romance, and sexy men. And who doesn't love a good friend who will ca-caw for you!
Honolulubelle 13 days ago
Favorite Quotes: The formality in her voice was nothing new. When he was four and home from his first day at preschool, his mum hadn’t asked him if he’d made friends or had fun. She’d asked him whether his day had been “satisfactory.” Being a Southerner made her especially sensitive to jokes about no one wearing shoes or everyone using an outhouse or the lack of teeth. And absolutely no one of her acquaintance had married a cousin. He’s done well for himself even if he does trail eau de manure. But you’d never be short of barbecue or bacon, so that’s a plus. “I assume you’re well versed at your age, but responsible sex is important. I read in the London Times that the STD infection rate is actually highest amongst the elderly.” “Elderly?” Gareth’s shoulders bowed up and reminded Alasdair of a bull shown a red cape. “I can still put you flat on your back, laddie.” “Do you have condoms?” “Even if I did have some, they probably would have expired.” “Disintegrated is more like. Ashes to ashes and dust to dust.” He was so quintessentially all-American he should be handing out baseballs and apple pies to foreigners as they alighted from airplanes. My Review: Having both Scottish and Southern roots, I derived considerable pleasure from reading Laura Trentham’s latest offering, which kicks off a new series with a lively start. I was waffling on how to rate this pleasantly amusing tale and in going through my marked highlights I had to bow to Ms. Trentham’s sly and deft deployment of wry wit and sparkling levity. The storylines were slowly entangled and laced together gradually yet were pleasantly engaging and entertaining throughout. I was frequently smirking at Izzy’s foot in mouth tendencies and physical awkwardness as well as the verbal sparring and lively banter that sparked among the various characters, their quips and rejoinders were clever and snicker-worthy. I will be eagerly awaiting the next installment and hoping for a similar “Hotty MacScottypants.”
FromTheSouth 14 days ago
The catchy title caught my attention, along with the word highlander. What can I say? I’m a sucker for a Scottish themed romantic tale regardless of the time period it takes place. I know it might sound like an opening line to a joke, but, folks, this book mostly centers around the sizzling, instant attraction and sweet/at times humorous connection between Alasdair and Isabel, the main couple. Though they both were leery and skeptical of the circumstances that had their similar yet different worlds colliding, these two perfect for each other soulmates had me at their first “hello”. I couldn’t help but cheer them on the entire time. Their natural back and forth wit/banter solidified them as a couple long before a couple of very graphic steamy scenes sealed the deal later on in the story line. Btw, this book does not really have a bar theme to it despite the name. There is a sweet, side subplot love story that I enjoyed as well that jump started these two destined to meet and stay together lovebirds. Overall, I really enjoyed getting to know them and all the characters that played a role here. I thought the author did a good job of interweaving back history, baggage, and the present, which included angst, hopes, dreams, and two true loves that could not be denied. In the last chapter, we are introduced to an out of the blue character that I suspect will be the leading man in the next book. I think it is pretty obvious who he will be butting heads with then handing over his heart. Here’s to hoping the same wit, charm, and type of love will take center stage there, as well. Title: A Highlander Walks Into a Bar, Series: Highland, Georgia (Book 1), Author: Laura Trentham, Pages: 336, stand-alone but part of a series, Scottish born, well meaning hero, funny/sweet heroine who can be embarrassing klutzy, some steamy scenes, romance safe, OM wants to date her, no OW drama, relationship angst, no bar theme to it. Book 1 - A Highlander Walks Into a Bar Book 2 - A Highlander in a Pickup, releases 2/25/20 (I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced reader copy of this book via NetGalley. All thoughts and opinions are my own. I was not given any payment or compensation for this review, nor is there any affiliation or relationship between this reviewer and the author/publisher/NetGalley.)
Anonymous 14 days ago
This was a nice book. The characters were well developed and the relationships they formed felt authentic. The only downside I saw, was the obvious conflicts that were bound to happen. I liked the humor between Alasdair and Izzy, and how they were able to be themselves with each other.
MJHughes12 14 days ago
With a quirky heroine and a couple of sexy Scots, this was a fun read that had a whole lot of laughs wrapped up in a bunch of heart. I really loved Isabel and all of her quirkiness. She’s never been able to fully engage her filter and is prone to saying exactly what she is thinking, which at times can be quite embarrassing for her. She is still saddled with the insecurities from her youth and has a hard time seeing herself as the competent, smart, and beautiful woman that she is. Alasdair is a bit uptight and all business – until he meets Isabel and begins to see all things that have been missing from his life. He is her perfect complement, and I loved how these to were perfect for each other – accepting each other as they are but also allowing each other to see things in themselves with a new light and helping each other realize what they truly want out of life. I think my favorite part of the book was the relationship between Isabel and her mother, Rose, and Alasdair and his uncle, Gareth. Isabel has never really established an adult relationship with her mother and I loved watching that happen over the course of the book. And I loved Rose’s outlook on life and her ability to accept and move on as events unfolded. Alasdair and Gareth have been estranged, and it was nice to see them rekindle their close relationship from Alasdair’s youth, and I especially loved how Gareth helped Alasdair come to terms with his past. Highlands, Georgia looks to be the setting for some fun books. The epilogue gave a hint to the next story and I can’t wait to see what is in store for Anna. There are many other characters that were introduced in this first book and I can only imagine the fun backdrop that Highland and its Scottish festival will play as this series unfolds. Laura Trentham has a wonderful writing style that is easy to read and contains heart, heat, and humor. Her dialogue between characters and the scenes she creates for them are always entertaining and keep the stories interesting and the plot moving forward. This book moved a little slow in the beginning, mostly since it was setting up the background for not just the story but the series, but once the backdrop was sent, the characters took over and the story really came to life. I would definitely recommend this one since it had a bit of everything that I love in a romance.
Cat_Reader 14 days ago
Izzy is more than used to prepare HIghland Festival with her mother, a big event that moves her city's economy and tourism, but this year things are somewhat different after her mother returned from Europe with an authentic highlander. At first Izzy is very suspicious of the mysterious man's intentions but slowly realizes that her mother is very happy. Problems begin to arise when a handsome, serious and enigmatic man appears in the area looking for Gareth. Alasdair is a workaholic shaped man who is involved in big business, he has no time to waste in Izzy's small town and much less time to help her with the party preparations, as the girl's mother is more entertained this year with her boyfriend. Wrapped in several hilarious scenes, clumsy, sweet Izzy will be more and more attracted to Alasdair even though she knows he shouldn't linger in town. The attraction between them is palpable and delicious, and slowly each one will need to find out what they really want for their life.
Pokeybooboo 15 days ago
A Highlander Walks into a Bar is the first book in Laura Trentham's Highland, Georgia series. This is also my first book by Ms. Trentham. Since I've lived in Georgia since I was ten, I thought this was a good one to start with. I chose well. Isabel Buchanan, also known as Izzy, is an accountant with a dream of writing the next great Southern novel. She also, together with her mother Rose, hosts and organizes the town's annual Highland Games. Imagine Izzy's surprise when her mother returns from a trip to Scotland with the best souvenir EVER...an actual Highlander! Izzy is quite suspicious; can this man Garrett be trying to bilk her mom? Alasdair Blackmoor soon arrives in Highland looking for his Uncle Garrett to bring him home, as his mother is worried about Garrett being used by Rose. Alasdair keeps it secret that Garrett is family, and an earl. When he meets Izzy, there is instant chemistry, but total distrust on all sides. The main characters are all quite enchanting, especially Izzy. I totally adored her. Though pretty, she was clumsy, bookish and couldn't seem to control the words that would pour out when she opened her mouth. She had me snorting laughter throughout the story. Alasdair was absolutely charming. He was thoroughly taken with Izzy, though he was keeping secrets from her. He was feeling a bit lost and out of control in his life, and Izzy felt like home. The romance between her mom and Alastair's uncle was sweet. Though the fact almost everyone was keeping secrets was a bit irritating, the great characters more than made up for it. The epilogue seemed to be setting up the next installment of the series, and can't wait to revisit Highland! I received an ARC of this book courtesy of the publisher and NetGalley. I received no compensation for my review, and all thoughts and opinions are entirely my own.
JannaD 16 days ago
A Highlander Walks into a Bar sounds like the beginning of a bad joke... but the book itself is actually the beginning of a fun series! The last chapter got me excited for the next book already! I really enjoyed the storylines of both Isabel and Alasdair. Their characters were each fun and quirky in the best ways, especially Izzy. I loved how she always said what was on her mind, and how Alasdair never judged her or thought she was weird but laughed good-naturedly, and encouraged her to pursue her real passions. Of course, Alasdair is not perfect and is, in fact, hiding a couple of secrets in regards to his family and his occupation. Can Izzy forgive him? And what will happen when the festival of games is over, and his home is in Scotland while hers is in Georgia? This was a really charming read, and was more heartwarming and with more real emotion that I was expecting! There's plenty of heat and chemistry between the two, and you won't be disappointed there, but there was also a realness to them, and I loved that they were able to laugh with each other and be their true selves. I'd highly recommend picking this up for a fun, summer read and I will be eagerly awaiting the next installment! Thank you to St. Martin's Press and NetGalley for a review copy in exchange for an honest review.
RomanticReadsandSuch 16 days ago
*slight spoilers ahead* I usually don't enjoy romances with little white lies but Trentham manages to do it with minimal drama and without making anyone feel like they were wronged. We understand why Alasdair and Gareth do the things they do ... although I do have to say that I shook my head at Alasdair a few times. Typical guy thinking he knows best :) There's also a bit of insta-love involved, and not just with Izzy's mom bringing a guy home from her holiday. Our main couple does spend a lot of time together, though, and you get the feeling that they really have a connection & understanding. (I just wish, with all of the talk of Scotland, that we'd gotten a little more of their time there than what was in the epilogue.) By this point, Trentham is an absolute pro at the small town romance - delivering quirky characters, a boat load of humor, and a town full of eccentricities. Check out her other series if you haven't already - fabulous reads all around. Plus now she's giving us guys in kilts and all I can say is you rock, Trentham! Keep 'em coming 'cause I'm SO ready for Iain and Anna's story. And I really hope that there's something in the works for Holt ... a fiery Scottish lass to offset his All-American Boyness would just make my day *hint, hint* **Review given honestly and freely after receipt of a reader copy. This opinion is completely my own and was not influenced in any way.**
Anonymous 17 days ago
This is new author to me. I enjoyed the story. I loved seeing how the daughter dealt with her mother's new relationship while she was secretly falling for someone too. There is drama about a white lie and someone being too protective by digging up information. It has sweet romance and happily ever afters. The author takes you on a great journey of two people who don't realize they are falling for each other.