Moonstruck Madness

Moonstruck Madness

by Laurie McBain

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Overview

"The plot has imaginative twists and turns, and the backgrounds are lush and evocative. It's good, satisfying fun." -Publishers Weekly

She's one thing by day, something else altogether by night...

After escaping the slaughter of her clan at a young age, Scottish noblewoman Sabrina Verrick provides for her siblings by living a double life, until the night she encounters the Duke, and her secret and all she holds dear is threatened...

He's so disillusioned, he's completely vulnerable...

With his inheritance at stake, Lucien, Duke of Camareigh, sets a trap for the Scottish beauty with the piercing violet eyes, never imagining what will happen when the trap is sprung...

As their lives become irreversibly entangled, Lucien and Sabrina become each other's biggest threat, as well as their only salvation...

Praise for Laurie McBain:

"Ms. McBain's flare for the romantic intermingled with suspense will keep the reader riveted to the story until the last page." -Affaire de Coeur

"Vivid sense of description, colorful characters... I found myself happily lost in the magnificence of the storytelling." -Los Angeles Herald Examiner

Dominick Trilogy:
Moonstruck Madness
Chance the Winds of Fortune
Dark Before the Rising Storm

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781402262470
Publisher: Sourcebooks
Publication date: 02/01/2011
Series: Dominick Trilogy , #1
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 384
Sales rank: 145,618
File size: 841 KB

About the Author

Laurie McBain became a publishing phenomenon at age twenty-six with her first historical romance. She wrote seven romances, all of which were bestsellers, selling over 11 million copies. All have been out of print for over 5 years. She is a winner of the RT Reviewers' Choice Award. She lives in the Bay Area.


Laurie McBain became a publishing phenomenon at age twenty-six with her first historical romance. She is a winner of the Reviewer's Choice Award for Best Historical Romance Author. All of her romances were bestsellers, selling over 11 million copies. Laurie's books have been out of print for over 5 years.

Read an Excerpt

The boast of heraldry, the pomp of power,
And all that beauty, all that wealth e'er gave,
Awaits alike the inevitable hour.
The paths of glory lead but to the grave.
-Thomas Gray

Prelude

Culloden Moor, Scotland, 1746

A northeast wind blowing rain and sleet welcomed the early morning watchers on the hill, their cloaked figures cowering together in vain for protection from the cold, penetrating wetness that seeped through to the skin. Some distance away, and farther down the slope of the moor, a lone figure crouched low in the heather. Sabrina Verrick hugged her cape more tightly around her as she stared in horrified fascination at the scene before her. The battlefield was the only patch of color across the wide expanse of gray moor. Colorful blue, yellow, and green standards waved above the scarlet-coated battalions of the English king's army, its Union flag boldly flying in Scottish skies.

Sabrina raised her head and felt the icy rain fall on her face. In the distance she could hear the monotonous beating of the drums. Drums beating in time for marching English feet, bringing them closer to the bright tartan plaid of the clans. Below her Sabrina could see her clan with her grandfather stalwartly leading them. His bonnet, trimmed with eagles' feathers, was cocked jauntily over his weathered brow, the blues and reds of his tartan jacket and kilt now darkened by the rain; but on his left shoulder the silver and cairngorm brooch that pinned his plaid still gleamed richly. He'd drawn his broadsword and was swinging its double-edged blade threateningly before him. He stood tall and magnificent before his men as they awaited the signal to attack. A burnt wooden cross, tied together by a piece of bloodstained linen, leaned crookedly in the ground-silent now that the call to arms had been answered.

The haunting notes of the bagpipes echoed through the air as the fierce Highlanders surged forward to meet the enemy, their heavy broadswords singing as they sliced through the air in defiance of the shining bayonets of the English. But few reached the English ranks before they were cut down by the roaring cannon ripping through the clans, dismembering and leaving only parts of bodies where once bold men had stood.

Sabrina screamed in terror as she saw half her clan wiped out by a single volley of cannon. Those who managed to escape the barrage of cannon fire were left to be cut down by the continuous, evenly timed musket fire that never stopped coming in waves of death and destruction. Sabrina felt the bile rise in her throat as she stared down at the massacre. Red was the only color that penetrated her numbed mind. Scarlet coats, bloodied swords and red-stained heather jumped before her eyes as English and Scot lay dying alike. It was impossible to separate the two enemies now. They were one surging mass of violence.

Sabrina narrowed her eyes, straining them as she searched for her grandfather among the men below her, praying that she wouldn't see him crumpled to the ground with the countless others. Where was he? Where was her clan? She stayed low, sinking down into the heather as she sought desperately for a sight of their tartan. She turned suddenly at screams behind her and watched in disbelief as English soldiers, gradually making their way up the slope, bayoneted the small group of watchers on the hill. They began to scatter in panic, running for their lives as the soldiers bore down upon them, ruthlessly cutting down everything in their path. Sabrina remained still, afraid to move at all lest she meet the same fate. As she silently stared at the battlefield she caught a flickering movement as a small band of men made their retreat through the mangled bodies of their comrades and the enemy, escaping the field of their devastating defeat. Three carried her grandfather, and what was left of the clan limped along behind, their broadswords still raised to ward off any attack from the rear.

They were not the only ones fleeing the moor. The battle had been lost. The clans were now trying to gather together what remained of their members and escape to safety in the hidden glens and lochs, losing themselves forever up in the craggy hills and unapproachable valleys that cut in deep chasms through the barren countryside.

Sabrina carefully fled her hiding place and followed. She ran as though the devil were at her heels, running until her breath came painfully and her legs felt leaden. She followed them up into a narrow opening that twisted and climbed until the slaughter across the moor was hidden from view, and made her way through the passage, her mind a blank until she saw a small sod-and-stone cottage, little more than a hut, some distance ahead.

"Let me pass," she told the guard blocking the door, his bloodied broadsword held defiantly before her, barring her way.

"Nay, lass, I couldna' dae that," he answered slowly, his blue eyes still dazed from shock. His face was darkened by streaks of blood from a deep wound beside his ear that was now clotted with dried blood the color of his hair.

"I'm the laird's granddaughter. I must be with him!"

Sabrina cried, pushing past the beaten sentinel who gave easily and moved wearily aside.

Sabrina stopped abruptly as she entered the one-room hut.

A peat fire was burning weakly in the middle of the room while an old woman squatted nearby, a worn shawl wrapped about her thin shoulders as she steadily stirred a rusted iron pot that hung over the fire. A sickening sweet odor of stewed mutton floated to Sabrina as she moved into the room.

It was quiet, deathly quiet, as if all the men had died. They watched silently as Sabrina walked to the far end of the room and knelt down beside her grandfather. She choked back the sob that rose from her throat as she stared at his broken body. He was breathing heavily, an odd rasping sound that shook his chest in deep, painful shudders.

"Oh, Grandfather, what have they done to you?" Sabrina sobbed as she wiped the blood trickling from the corner of his lips with the edge of her cape.

"Grape. Tha' did it." A voice spoke sharply beside Sabrina. Sabrina looked up into the blazing eyes of the man bending over the other side of her grandfather. His eyes were the only spot of color in his pale face. They glowed fanatically as they stared into hers, hatred pouring out of his soul.

"It wae like a thousand knives bein' thrown at us. They couldna' just shoot us doon, nay, they had tae cripple us with tha'," he said bitterly, indicating the rusty iron, nails and leaden balls that littered the ground, shreds of tartan still clinging to some.

"Ripping us apart, aul tae pieces, nae knowin' wha' hit us." He looked down at Sabrina's grandfather, a frown between his eyes. "They even got the auld laird," he mumbled as if he couldn't believe it yet. He looked at his own bloodied hands, rubbing his fingers convulsively. "But they did nae get me pipes. I'll play for ye ever' nicht," he promised the laird.

"They'll nae stop Ewan MacElden."

Sabrina was staring in alarm at the half-crazed man when she felt her hand grasped by shaking fingers and looked down to see her grandfather's eyes opening. She closed her hands about his cold fingers, trying to warm them as she looked into his face. It was devoid of expression and feeling, and she knew she gazed into a death mask. His eyes seemed to be pleading with her and she bent lower as his lips parted.

"Shouldna' come doon from the hills. Waur fools tae fight in the open. Slaughtered like sheep," he whispered, his usually perfect English now thickened with an accent.

"Please, Grandfather, don't speak," Sabrina pleaded, "we'll get you back to the castle."

Sabrina looked to the others who stood silently about her.

There were only five or six of them, and she wondered frantically why they just stood there.

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Moonstruck Madness 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 53 reviews.
Moonlynx More than 1 year ago
I am so excited this book is on the Nook. I read it years ago (and the following two books!) and kept rereading it. It's that good.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book got it all action, adventure, romance. I couldn't put it down! It's my all time favorite book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read this book when it was first published. I loved the story and characters and the writing style. I don't like to give any spoilers. I will just say that if all you want are sex scenes and no real story, then this book is not for you. If you want a strong female lead and a fun story with some tasteful sex scenes, then this book could be for you. I am only disappointed with the fact that they do not seem to want to publish the next two books in the series. Please publish them!
SandraEcstein More than 1 year ago
This was a wonderful read. I just loved it and I know I will re-read it!
AAR More than 1 year ago
MOONSTRUCK MADNESS by Laurie McBain is a delightful historical romance set in 1746 Scotland and 1751 England. It is an re-issued release from 1977.It is well written with depth,details,twists and turns.It has romance, a small amount of sweet sensuality, mystery,misunderstanding,mistrust,secrets,adventure,vengeance,corruption,suspense,love,vulnerability,family,a Scottish beauty,and an English nobleman. The hero,Lucien,Duke of Camareigh,is sexy, rugged handsome with a scarred face,has a temper,tough,demanding,someone is out to kill him, in need of a wife to inherit his ancient home,enter....Sabrina.The heroine,Sabrina,a gentle bred Lady,half Scottish,has secrets for she is the notorious highwayman,"Bonnie Charlie",has a fiery temper,strong willed and the body that could tempt a saint.When, Lucien decides he must possess the fearless Sabrina,encounters a few difficulties because Sabrina has other plans.Together, they travel a perilous road to married bliss for on the horizon awaits their enemies.This is a fast paced,action packed story of love,hate,mistrust,searching for love and happiness.If you enjoy an action packed adventure with twists and turns,evil relatives bent on vengeance,and true love that this is the story for you. I would highly recommend this story,it will kept you on the edge of your seat,with you heart in your throat.A must read and a keeper. This book was received for the purpose of review from the publisher and details can be found at Sourcebooks Casablance,an imprint of Sourcebooks,Inc. and My Book Addiction and More.
celticlady53 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
First published in 1977, Moonstruck Madness by Laurie McBain is a newly released February 1st, 2011 novel of intrigue, and romance. It reminded me of the books I read at that time by authors Kathleen Woodwiss, Rosemary Rogers and Rebecca Brandewyne. A historical romance with engaging characters, that draws you right into the story. Sabrina along with her sister Mary, Aunt Margaret and brother Richard fled from Scotland to England after their grandfather died in the Battle of Culloden. Sabrina is a modest Lady during the day but at night, along with two men from the village they live in, she becomes Bonnie Charlie and they rob the rich so that they can survive. Not a safe profession by any means but Sabrina does what she has to do until she comes face to face with one of the victims of their robberies. Lucien, Duke of Camareigh, is determined to find this nightly bandit and bring him to justice. Then into the story comes Sabrina's, Mary's and Richard's father. The Marquis and his new wife are in need of money so they plan on parading Sabrina and Mary in front of eligible rich men so that they can secure their financial future with an advantageous marriage for both girls. He has not been a part of the siblings lives in over a decade and the siblings have no choice but do what he wants, for now. This novel is full of the history of England and Scotland in the mid 1700's, romance, deception and greed. A fast paced novel and if you want to read a good old fashioned romance you can't go wrong with this one. I enjoyed reading this book and recommend it.
blodeuedd on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
My thoughts:This book was first published in the 70s and it shows, it was a different time for romance.I will go back to the beginning first. Sabrina is living in England and to support her family she is a highwayman. She is a hellcat with claws. One night she steals from Lucien, the Duke of Camareigh and he wants "him, the highwayman" dead. Well we all know that is not gonna happen.I do wonder what it is about old romance and all the drama. Oh these people hate each other, and say so too, and then the passion takes over. They just can't decide. One time she slaps him, and he slaps her back. Now I winched but decided to blame it on the old school romance thing, still, so uncool, you do not hit a woman.The other thing is that she is 17, and he is in his 30s. Truth be told I do not have a problem with that, the book takes place 250 years ago and there was nothing strange about it then. But the thing I did not like was the drama. These two should just have sat down and talked, instead of yelling, running away, doing stupid things and being so angry all the time *looking at you Sabrina*.Still it was an amusing tale, she had guts being a highwayman, and then there was the sidestory that stole my attention. The Colonel sent to find the wicked highwayman, and her sister Mary who has the sight.Recommendation and final thoughts:The story is sure not like they write them now, it's fun to see how things have changed. And the title does fit, they go mad, that's for sure.Reason for reading:Sounded good
Pure_Jonel More than 1 year ago
What an imaginative story, that is simultaneously well set in history. I enjoyed how well set this novel was. McBain set the scene well, transporting her readers back in time before taking them on an adventurous ride. I also enjoyed the characters that McBain filled this novel with. They were unique without stepping completely out genre. I enjoyed seeing them morph throughout the story, becoming more what we’d expect, without ever loosing who they were. McBain mixes history with romance, passion with the realities of the lives the author found themselves in with a flair that held my attention. This is definitely a novel that will stand the test of time.
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