The Highland Guardian

The Highland Guardian

by Amy Jarecki

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Overview

The Highland Guardian by Amy Jarecki

A Goodreads Best of the Month pick!


He has sworn to protect her...
Captain Reid MacKenzie, Earl of Seaforth, is a man of his word. During a harrowing battle at sea, the heroic Highlander makes a vow to a dying friend to watch over the man's daughter. His plan: send the child to boarding school as quickly as possible so he can continue his mission. But Reid's new ward is no wee lass. She's a ravishing, fully grown woman, and it's all he can do to remember his duty and not seduce her himself.


But he might be her greatest threat...
Miss Audrey Kennet is stunned by the news. First this kilted brute tells Audrey her father is dead, and next he insists she marry. But as Reid scours England for the most suitable husband, Audrey soon realizes the brave, brawny Scot is the only man she wants—though loving him means risking her lands, her freedom, and even her life.


Lords of the Highlands series:
The Highland Duke
The Highland Commander
The Highland Guardian

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781455597888
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Publication date: 12/19/2017
Series: Lords of the Highlands Series , #3
Edition description: Reissue
Pages: 368
Sales rank: 166,448
Product dimensions: 4.20(w) x 6.70(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

Award winning and Amazon All-Star author, Amy Jarecki likes to grab life, latch on, and reach for the stars. She's married to a mountain-biking pharmacist and has put four kids through college. She studies karate, ballet, yoga, and often you'll find her hiking Utah's Santa Clara Hills. Reinventing herself a number of times, Amy sang and danced with the Follies, was a ballet dancer, a plant manager, and an accountant for Arnott's Biscuits in Australia. After earning her MBA from Heroit-Watt University in Scotland, she dove into the world of Scottish historical romance and hasn't returned. Become a part of her world and learn more about Amy's books on amyjarecki.com.

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The Highland Guardian 4.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 14 reviews.
Anonymous 10 months ago
Loved it
PegGlover More than 1 year ago
4.5 stars The Highland Guardian is a well-written, perfectly paced Scottish Highlander Romance. Reid, the Scottish Earl of Seaforth, did not want to take on the responsibility of another man’s daughter. But, how could he refuse his dying friend’s request? What Reid never expected, however, was that Nicholas’s daughter, Audrey, was not a wee bairn, to be taken care of, but a full grown woman, and a beautiful one, at that. Reid found that he had to constantly remind himself, that Audrey was his ward, and under his protection, not a woman with whom he could take liberties with. There was also that other complication, which Reid often tries to put out of his mind; the fact that he is betrothed. When Reid was just a young lad, his father promised a clan chieftain, that Reid would marry his daughter. This marriage would ensure a strong binding alliance between the two clans. It didn’t matter that Reid had no interest in marrying this woman. He was an Earl, after all, and expected to marry to benefit the clan. Breaking off a betrothal would be considered a betrayal. And, the last thing Reid wanted was to foster mistrust or a war between the clans. But, how could Reid marry someone he’s grown up with, knowing that his heart belonged to another woman? There was evil lurking around Audrey’s home. It was just waiting for the right opportunity to pounce. Now, that Nicholas Kennet was out of the way, it was time for revenge. And, Nicholas Kennet’s daughter, Audrey, would be paying the price. The only barrier to a successful end, was Reid, the Scottish Earl of Seaforth. So, the nosey Earl would have to go. The Highland Guardian is a captivating historical fiction romance; crafted with emotion, witty dialog, and well-developed characters. Thank you, Forever-Grand Central Publishing and NetGalley, for my advanced review copy. I loved it.
Crystal61 More than 1 year ago
I did not want to put this story down. Audrey's strength and smarts made her a fun heroine, and I wanted her to be happy. Reid's sense of duty and his struggle to come to terms with his future had me smiling and shaking my head. As they fought all the dangers around them, I kept turning the pages to see how it turned out. I loved the history behind the story as well. I highly recommend this book. I received a copy of this story through Netgalley, and this is my unsolicited review.
TheGrumpyBookReviewer More than 1 year ago
Amy Jarecki has done it again -- wrapped a beautiful love story into historical fiction. In this action-packed third installment of the Lords of the Highlands series, The Highland Guardian, Captain Reid McKenzie, 5th Earl of Seaforth, becomes the guardian of his friend and co-conspirator, Nicholas Kennet's daughter, Audrey. Nicholas is killed by English dragoons who sent cannonballs into Reid's ship. The story was based on William McKenzie, the real 5th earl, and his friend, the widower, Nicholas Kennet, and his only child, Mary Kennet, who married the real-life 5th earl.   Reid expects to find a child as his ward. Needing to hurry home to organize the highland clans, he intends to send her to the finest boarding school, but Audrey is no child. She is a gorgeous and shy yet feisty 19-year-old woman. This was a time when women could not inherit property, hence the need for a guardian.   Like the first two books in the series, this one is set against the backdrop of the Jacobite Rebellion. Reid needs to settle Audrey's accounts, and return to his duties in the effort to convince Queen Anne to name her half-brother King James of Scotland as her successor to the throne of England. Reid is charged with uniting the clans, and organizing them for "the cause". These were dangerous times, when one's opinion of the government must be kept under wraps; a time when there was no such thing as a free press. It was agreed that the clans would be peaceful until the death of the queen.   Because Audrey is female, she must be married, or there must be a search for a male relative to handle her affairs. Enter her nefarious and penniless half-cousin, the illegitimate son of her deceased uncle, along with a less-than-honest probate attorney. With all these life-like characters, the pace of the story quickens. I always hate for these stories to end. I want to know how their lives went on after the immediate danger had passed. If you enjoy historical fiction, you will love The Highland Guardian.
TheGrumpyBookReviewer More than 1 year ago
Amy Jarecki has done it again -- wrapped a beautiful love story into historical fiction. In this action-packed third installment of the Lords of the Highlands series, The Highland Guardian, Captain Reid McKenzie, 5th Earl of Seaforth, becomes the guardian of his friend and co-conspirator, Nicholas Kennet's daughter, Audrey. Nicholas is killed by English dragoons who sent cannonballs into Reid's ship. The story was based on William McKenzie, the real 5th earl, and his friend, the widower, Nicholas Kennet, and his only child, Mary Kennet, who married the real-life 5th earl.   Reid expects to find a child as his ward. Needing to hurry home to organize the highland clans, he intends to send her to the finest boarding school, but Audrey is no child. She is a gorgeous and shy yet feisty 19-year-old woman. This was a time when women could not inherit property, hence the need for a guardian.   Like the first two books in the series, this one is set against the backdrop of the Jacobite Rebellion. Reid needs to settle Audrey's accounts, and return to his duties in the effort to convince Queen Anne to name her half-brother King James of Scotland as her successor to the throne of England. Reid is charged with uniting the clans, and organizing them for "the cause". These were dangerous times, when one's opinion of the government must be kept under wraps; a time when there was no such thing as a free press. It was agreed that the clans would be peaceful until the death of the queen.   Because Audrey is female, she must be married, or there must be a search for a male relative to handle her affairs. Enter her nefarious and penniless half-cousin, the illegitimate son of her deceased uncle, along with a less-than-honest probate attorney. With all these life-like characters, the pace of the story quickens. I always hate for these stories to end. I want to know how their lives went on after the immediate danger had passed. If you enjoy historical fiction, you will love The Highland Guardian.
etoile1996 More than 1 year ago
i think reid mackenzie just became my favorite hero of this series. i've mentioned this before but it's fascinating reading about these characters who are on the losing side of history. based on real people, the fictionalized love stories have all been fantastic. and in the highland guardian, reid and audrey's love story really has a chance to shine. when he promises nicholas kennet that he'll watch over his daughter, reid mackenzie imagines a young girl in pigtails who he'll ship off to boarding school. what he discovers is that miss audrey kennet is a lovely young woman, all of nineteen, too old for a guardian, but given society's rules, also in need of someone to watch over her. at first suspicious of the man who brings her tidings of her father's death, she begins to change her tune when he doesn't immediately treat her as incapable of rational thought. he respects her intelligence and gives her more freedom than she expects. but it's when he stands up for her and refuses to allow her to be forced into marriage that she really takes notice. even though his stated goal is to marry her off and have her settled and out of his hair, he refuses to take the first proposal that comes along. he wants to give her a real chance at happiness. possibly because he knows what it is to be bound by someone else's promise. he isn't entirely free to choose his own mate. and this holds him back from freely expressing himself to audrey. even if it is readily apparent to one and all that he's totally in love with her. and she with him. they must fight some pretty tough odds, including false imprisonment, a wild escape, a dragoon of redcoats, and the remote scottish highlands. but when audrey and reid stand together they find a way to prevail. the strength of their connection, the way they will fight to save one another says it all. this was a very enjoyable read, combining action and adventure with a lush historical backdrop and characters who feel so real. **the highland guardian will publish on december 19, 2016. i received an advance reader copy courtesy of netgalley/grand central publishing (forever) in exchange for my honest review.
FaeScot More than 1 year ago
The wallflower discovers she's stronger and has more going for her than she ever knew! The hero of our story who has always been the responsible one, finds himself with more to deal with than he ever dreamed of. Oh this is going into my favorites file. Reid MacKenzie is a Scottish Earl, Captain of his own galley returning from France on a mission for Queen Anne and as leader of the Scottish Defenders. In his youth he was a ward of Queen Anne after his parents died and became one of her favorite Scots. He went to France to plead with James Stuart to convert to Protestantism so he could inherit the English throne upon Queen Anne's death. Otherwise the Scottish/English Stuart line would end and the Hanover line would take over. His ship was sunk by an errant "warning shot" by an English Navy ship patrolling the coastal waters. On board was Nicholas Kennet, a wealthy English coal miner who what helping to fund the "Jacobites". He was the only fatality. As Nicholas is dying he extracts a promise from Reid to see to the wellbeing of his only daughter and heir, Audrey. Unbeknownst to Reid said daughter is 19, newly home from boarding school and a professed "wallflower". I loved Audrey Kennet. She only had her Dad as a friend and they did everything together. She suddenly finds her life upside down, about to be married off to a stranger and ripped from her home. She has no relatives and suddenly find herself with a young stranger as her Guardian. After meeting with her father's solicitor, who is determined to turn her inheritance over to the crown as no woman can possibly inherit, she is determined to prove to the world she can run her own affairs. Each step of the way she finds more and more backbone and determination that she can control her own life and affairs. I loved seeing the wallflower blossom. And poor Reid can't walk away because he's made a promise he can't walk away from either. His problem is he's running out of time as he has to call a Clan meeting in Scotland in 3 months and here he is in England tending to Audrey. Enter the "slimy" Wagner Tupps determined to get his hands on Audrey and her inheritance. You see he's the illegitimate son of Audrey's uncle, Josiah. Amy takes us on a step by step journey of how Reid protects Audrey and Audrey grows into the woman her father would be proud of. I adored experiencing the journey by reading their story. Thank you Amy and Hachette Book Group for giving me this ARC for an honest review.
FaeScot More than 1 year ago
The wallflower discovers she's stronger and has more going for her than she ever knew! The hero of our story who has always been the responsible one, finds himself with more to deal with than he ever dreamed of. Oh this is going into my favorites file. Reid MacKenzie is a Scottish Earl, Captain of his own galley returning from France on a mission for Queen Anne and as leader of the Scottish Defenders. In his youth he was a ward of Queen Anne after his parents died and became one of her favorite Scots. He went to France to plead with James Stuart to convert to Protestantism so he could inherit the English throne upon Queen Anne's death. Otherwise the Scottish/English Stuart line would end and the Hanover line would take over. His ship was sunk by an errant "warning shot" by an English Navy ship patrolling the coastal waters. On board was Nicholas Kennet, a wealthy English coal miner who what helping to fund the "Jacobites". He was the only fatality. As Nicholas is dying he extracts a promise from Reid to see to the wellbeing of his only daughter and heir, Audrey. Unbeknownst to Reid said daughter is 19, newly home from boarding school and a professed "wallflower". I loved Audrey Kennet. She only had her Dad as a friend and they did everything together. She suddenly finds her life upside down, about to be married off to a stranger and ripped from her home. She has no relatives and suddenly find herself with a young stranger as her Guardian. After meeting with her father's solicitor, who is determined to turn her inheritance over to the crown as no woman can possibly inherit, she is determined to prove to the world she can run her own affairs. Each step of the way she finds more and more backbone and determination that she can control her own life and affairs. I loved seeing the wallflower blossom. And poor Reid can't walk away because he's made a promise he can't walk away from either. His problem is he's running out of time as he has to call a Clan meeting in Scotland in 3 months and here he is in England tending to Audrey. Enter the "slimy" Wagner Tupps determined to get his hands on Audrey and her inheritance. You see he's the illegitimate son of Audrey's uncle, Josiah. Amy takes us on a step by step journey of how Reid protects Audrey and Audrey grows into the woman her father would be proud of. I adored experiencing the journey by reading their story. Thank you Amy and Hachette Book Group for giving me this ARC for an honest review.
Guitarmomma19 More than 1 year ago
Reid, the Earl of Seaforth, had no idea what he was getting himself into when he pledged to look after Nicholas Kennets daughter. Expecting a spoiled you child he's surprised to find a shy,beautiful young woman. And more importantly one he is attracted to. Audrey doesn't know how to take Reid. One minute he's charming and the next bellowing about marrying her off so he can get back to his lands. But every time they're together something comes over them. How can he talk of marrying her off when he kisses her like that??  The more they are together the harder it is to resist what Reid knows he must. He is promised to another. But with danger around every corner he must do all in his power to keep Miss Audrey safe. But as the Redcoats capture Reid all bets are off. He must be rescued. And Audrey must be kept away from the vile Wagner Tupps. He'll never lay a hand on her if Reid has anything to do with it.  It all comes crashing down in an epic fight with danger and deceit. Will they be overcome before they ever have a chance to profess their love?? Will secrets keep them apart long after the fights have stopped or will Reid be her highland guardian forever?? 
Sissymae1 More than 1 year ago
The Highland Guardian by Amy Jarecki is Book Three in the "Lords of the Highlands" series. This is the story of Captain Reid MacKenzie, Earl of Seaforth and Audrey Kennet. Reid and his crew were returning from France when they were attacked near the coast of Harlepool. During this attack Nicholas Kennet was killed but before he died he made Reid promise to take care of his daughter, Audrey. Reid agreed and thinking she would be a child figured he would put her in boarding school. But when he went to Coxhoe House to let her know of her father's passing he learns she just turned 19 years of age and already out of Finishing School. So Reid settles to marry the Heiress off to a stable man. But Audrey is a painfully shy wallflower or so she thinks until she learns that Reid is going to marry her off. Audrey does not want to be married off and goes forward to try and discourage this. But there is a man that wants her money who is willing to do what he has too to get it. But Reid is having a hard time fighting his growing feelings for her. This was a really exciting love story that I could not put down! Loved it!!
Sissymae1 More than 1 year ago
The Highland Guardian by Amy Jarecki is Book Three in the "Lords of the Highlands" series. This is the story of Captain Reid MacKenzie, Earl of Seaforth and Audrey Kennet. Reid and his crew were returning from France when they were attacked near the coast of Harlepool. During this attack Nicholas Kennet was killed but before he died he made Reid promise to take care of his daughter, Audrey. Reid agreed and thinking she would be a child figured he would put her in boarding school. But when he went to Coxhoe House to let her know of her father's passing he learns she just turned 19 years of age and already out of Finishing School. So Reid settles to marry the Heiress off to a stable man. But Audrey is a painfully shy wallflower or so she thinks until she learns that Reid is going to marry her off. Audrey does not want to be married off and goes forward to try and discourage this. But there is a man that wants her money who is willing to do what he has too to get it. But Reid is having a hard time fighting his growing feelings for her. This was a really exciting love story that I could not put down! Loved it!!
Mirabelle8 More than 1 year ago
If you are a fan of Scottish romances, The Highland Guardian, written by Amy Jarecki, will be perfect for you. It’s fast-paced, very well written, great storyline and loving characters, in short, it’s another great adventure set in the Highlands. I haven't read her previous books in this series Lords of the Highlands, but though this novel could be read alone. A Scottish adventure as I like them! I loved her two main characters Reid MacKenzie, the Earl of Seaforth, and Audrey Kennet, an heiress, and mistress of the Kennet Estate. Their beautiful love story starts as Reid's friend Nicholas, is dying and his only final request is for Reid to become his daughter's guardian. But Reid is on a mission and he doesn't have time to take care of a young girl. Imagining to meet a child, he is quite surprised to discover that his ward is a feisty, brave and determined young woman. The moment she meets him, Audrey feels she cannot trust this kilted highlander! On the other hand, Reid only needs to find her a good husband and go back to his mission. However, love will be in the air for this beautiful heroine and Scottish Earl. Together, they will embark on a journey filled with twists and turns. Ms. Jarecki did an excellent job writing this wonderful story set in the Highlands of Scotland. I’m sure you won’t be disappointed! *Received an advance reader copy from NetGalley and publisher in exchange for a fair review.
MoniqueD More than 1 year ago
Oh my, but this is a wonderful book! Coming back from France, with a missive from Prince James on his person, Captain Reid MacKenzie’s ship is hit by Her Majesty’s Navy’s cannonballs. Reid’s ship is sunk, and as his best friend Nicholas Kennet lay dying, he entrusts Reid with the welfare of his daughter Audrey. At barely twenty three, Reid hardly sees himself as a guardian of a wee lass: his life is busy as it is with his estates, and the Jacobite cause he champions. However, a nineteen year-old very fetching ward is a problem he doesn’t need. THE HIGHLAND GUARDIAN is book 3 in Amy Jarecki’s marvellous Lord of the Highland series, and this book is the best of them all! Against the backdrop of Scotland’s precarious position in Britain, Ms. Jarecki weaves an amazingly believable romance, fraught with peril and treachery. THE HIGHLAND GUARDIAN unfolds at breakneck speed, while fierce battles on land are fought, and danger lurks at sea, all made astonishingly authentic with the addition of fabulous historical details and crystal-clear descriptions from the author. THE HIGHLAND GUARDIAN is an extraordinarily exciting book, filled with spectacular action and unexpected twists that barely give the reader time to breathe. The writing is flawless, elegant yet unpretentious; the dialogues superb, and the characters magnificently fleshed-out, even the chief villain makes your skin crawl in a chillingly realistic manner. Reid is a splendid hero: confident, utterly charming, and yet not indestructible – and this is one of the several highlights of the book; boy, does Reid go through a lot! And Audrey is one of the best heroines ever written: very clever and talented in many ways, still clumsy at one thing, she discovers strengths she never knew she possesses, and this Sassenach lassie braves danger as well as a braw Highlander: dear readers, this is how unforgettable characters should be written! THE HIGHLAND GUARDIAN is a perfect blend of action, history, and romance; I highly recommend this excellent book which is one of this year’s best! I voluntarily reviewed an advanced reader copy of this book
CathyGeha More than 1 year ago
The Highland Guardian by Amy Jarecki Lord of the Highlands #3 Reid MacKenzie, Earl of Seaforth, was having a nice sail back home from France when everything went to sh*t in a handbasket. Finding his ship sinking, his friend mortally wounded and all on board swimming for their lives it was perhaps one of the worst days of his life…well…till that point…I do believe one later day in the book may have been quite a bit worse. Bidden by Nicholas Kennet to become guardian for his daughter Audrey what can Reid say but, “sure” thinking Audrey would be a little tyke…uh…nope, no way, no how. She was a woman full grown and rather tempting. Audrey claimed to be clumsy and shy but as time went on some of the words I wrote down related to her included: young, smart, naïve, stupid (very stupid sometimes), emotional, caring, capable, calming, stimulating, healing, stalwart…and she loves with a big heart. She is nineteen. Reid is a man with a purpose. He wants to ensure who will be the next king of England, has an earldom and all of its responsibilities, is part of a clan, has…well…had his own ship and is only twenty-three. He is sure he is too young to settle down though he knows he must someday. Throw into this story an evil man or two, a romance, a ball, a gorgeous red dress, an escape, time on the run, old expectations and promises to deal with, new love to figure out, evil dragoons, a sadist and more and you have a thrilling story from beginning to end. I will say that Audrey seemed weak and rather pallid at first and her idea of doing things for herself usually fell flat on its face BUT she did grow as the stories pages accumulated and I thought she and Reid made a good couple. Did I like the story? Yes Did I like the main characters? Yes Were the villains evil enough? Yes Were there characters I want to know more about? Yes Who are these characters? Well, I wonder if Chieftain Dunn Macrae and Mairie might have a book of their own at some point in the near future ;) Thank you to NetGalley, Forever (Grand Central Publishing) and the Author for the ARC – This is my honest review. 4-5 Stars