Brody is a Highland piper who has survived the Battle of Culloden, but whose life is still in danger. His father and brothers are dead, but his mother and sister are alive and hiding from the English troops tearing through the Highlands, raping, pillaging, murdering. Reluctantly, he agrees to marry the daughter of a Lowland laird to protect the only family he has left. Going in, he knows only that he is marrying one of two sisters with whom he was acquainted as a boy, and he is overjoyed to discover that his bride is Megan, the younger daughter he fell in love with years before. Both Brody and Megan soon discover that they have more on their hands with the other than they anticipated.
Author Anne Green weaves the story from both their points of view, using Brody’s brogue and Megan’s cultured diction to differentiate between them. While the omniscient point of view isn’t for everyone, I found it fascinating to watch the clash of the Highland and Lowland cultures played out between these two stubborn characters.
I think my favorite thing about the book is the way she wove the minutiae of daily life into the story. I was able to form mental images of the layout of the castle, the colors of the clothing, even the china without being beaten over the head with it. That level of detail requires so much research it makes me shiver a little!
“Masquerade Marriage” is a book that will end up dog-eared on my keeper shelf, not just because I enjoy reading it but because I will learn something about my craft with every reading. Painters improve their painting by copying the masters. The process for writers is similar but more complicated because while it is easy to dissect a bad book and learn what not to do, it is so much harder to dissect a good book without getting sucked into the story. This book is a must have for readers and writers who love Historical Romance.