Title: Tamed & Unleashed: The Highlander’s Vivacious Wife
Author: Bree Wolf
Publisher: WOLF Publishing
Release Date: October 2020
Length: 315 pages
Series?: Love’s Second Chance: Highland Tales #1
Genre: Historical, Romance
Waking up alone after a drunken night with a stranger in Gretna Green, CLAUDIA DAVENPORT, sister to Viscount Ashwood, finds herself still unmarried…and with child. In order to preserve her reputation, her brother sends her to a remote estate so she can give birth in secret and then return to society, unscathed…but heartbroken.
However, when her child is kidnapped, Claudia can no longer deny the bond that connects her to her son. Alone, she sets out to discover his whereabouts…and her path crosses that of a stranger, who feels all too familiar.
After marrying an English lass in Gretna Green, GARRETT MACDRUMMOND returns to their room at the inn the next morning only to find her gone. Duty-bound to return to his clan in the Scottish Highlands, he counts the days until he can travel to England to find her. However, when he finally does discover her, he is shocked to realise that she does not remember him.
Determined to remind her of the fateful night they shared, Garrett refuses to leave her side, following her across England without knowing why.
Will Claudia ever remember him? Will Garrett ever learn that he has a child? Will they recover their son or lose him without ever having had the chance to know him?
I wanted to LOVE this book, but it was so, so hard. But I couldn’t. At least half of the book is spent with Claudia determinedly refusing to divulge any information to Garrett about the mission she is on. It was the same conversation every morning, afternoon, or night, just a different inn. This story had so much potential and it fell so flat.
The plot is fairly linear: Garrett seeks out his now-year-long missing wife, Claudia, in London. For months he can’t find her, which is highly unusual. No one knows where she is, and everyone is wondering. She finally appears and doesn’t even recognize him. He follows her. Watches her. How is he going to get his wife back? One night, she sneaks out, moving across to the unsavory part of town. He winds up saving her from a bad situation and continues on the journey with her, not knowing what Claudia is even seeking: their son. All he has is a name she anguishes over in her sleep, which he presumes is another man, her love.
The plot for the kidnapping did throw me for a loop. I figured out who it was, but all the other details of how he was able to do all the things he did escaped me. I was highly skeptical of the book because how can a man care of a days-old baby while on the run? Constantly, every time Claudia would inquire somewhere, I kept thinking of the baby. If a man only was traveling with a baby, confirmed multiple times, who was keeping it alive?! … And then later, when Claudia is on the ship, it was again unclear how the baby was fed without a wet nurse.
I found it interesting that Claudia doesn’t give one thought whatsoever to her family that she absconds from in the middle of the night. Not until the end.
I also started getting anxious in the last portion of the book when Claudia is on the ship and then winds up on another ship. How will Garrett ever find her with an exchange like that? But she is convinced beyond a shadow of a doubt that the will come for her.