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Title: Untamed Highlander
Series: Dark Sword #4
Release Date: April 26, 2011
The Dark Sword series reins in the magic, passion, and fury of Scotland’s legendary warriors—for whom love is always worth fighting for…
DEVIL IN THE FLESH
Druid-born and magic-blessed, Isla is one of the deadliest she-devils ever to serve the forces of darkness. As an immortal Highland warrior, it’s up to Hayden Campbell to destroy her and her kind. But for Hayden, Isla is more than a sworn enemy. She is temptation…
ANGEL IN HIS ARMS
Taking Isla captive, Hayden hopes to avenge his kinsmen who died by Druid magic. But when he looks into Isla’s eyes, he sees the secrets of her past. When he touches her skin, he feels the passion in her soul. And soon Hayden comes to realize that this beautiful, beguiling woman is not his enemy at all—she is his destiny. And, even as the forces of darkness conspire against them, their love will conquer all…
Nielson BookScan Adult Fiction Bestseller List
Nominee – Historical Fantasy/Paranormal category of the RT Book Reviews
Rhapsody Bookclub Alternate Selection
Rhapsody Heartthrob of the Month
K.I.S.S. Award from RT Book Reviews
Third Place Historical category 2011 JABBIC Contest
“Donna Grant has created a dark and richly complex world filled with astonishingly vivid characters. Every page is pure enchantment. For readers who like intensely passionate and searingly romantic stories, Donna Grant is the author you’ve been waiting for!”
–Lisa Kleypas, New York Times bestselling author
4.5 Stars TOP PICK! “Grant’s newest Dark Sword tale is outstanding, with its delightful melding of history and the effect of centuries-old Druid magic. Wonderful characters with depth, charm and sensuality and a dark, brilliantly told tale brimming with emotion and sexual attraction all captivate.”
–Kathe Robin, RT Book Reviews
5 Stars! TOP PICK! “I loved the characters. They were so well written and it was easy to get caught up with each of them. I can’t wait for more.Untamed Highlander was a joy to read.”
-Tigger9, Night Owl Reviews
5 Angels RECOMMENDED READ! “The rich, multilayered plot moves at a sure, steady pace with many intriguing characters to keep things entertaining. Ms. Grant has penned a vivid, gripping tale with a skill and depth that’s made me a fan of her Dark Sword series. Readers looking for a fresh, enticing voice in paranormal, historical romance will be thrilled after picking up a copy of Untamed Highlander.”
-Tammy, Fallen Angel Reviews
5 Stars! “Untamed Highlander is my favorite book to date of the Dark Sword Series. I love the inner conflict each other these characters must overcome. If you haven’t picked up a Dark Sword novel, I highly recommend that you do.”
– Kimberly, Book Obsessed Chicks
4.5 Hearts! “Once again Donna Grant had me fall for her story and hero hook, line and sinker from page one, her writing is smooth, fast-paced and addictive with a capital A.”
– Marissa, Marissa’s Romance Retreat
4 Stars! “Grant is magically talented at pulling readers into an addictive universe with fascinating characters and making sure they never want to leave. This novel will delight readers and take them on a thrilling ride into a world of highlanders and magic. Be glad there is a large cast of characters, because this is one series you won’t ever want to end!”
– Lisa, Once Upon a Chapter
“Donna Grant’s Dark Sword series is steeped in an alternate, magic-infused history of ancient Scotland. She skillfully brings the storyline that arcs throughout all the books into another unexpected twist, while providing more hope for the eventual defeat of the Druids’ ancient enemy.”
– Diana T, Fresh Fiction
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Hayden leaned against a boulder and raked his hand through his damp hair. The snowfall had begun to grow more dense, the flakes thicker and heavier, but it didn’t hamper his superior eyesight. They stuck to his eyelashes and covered everything in a blinding white blanket.
Hours went by with Hayden locating nothing but more dead. The fact they were most likely Druids only made the findings more difficult to bear. Druids might have magic, but they were susceptible to the elements as any human was, and thanks to Deirdre’s affinity for killing them, the Druids were becoming more and more scarce.
A shout from Fallon let Hayden know it was time to return to MacLeod Castle. As Hayden began to turn away something caught his eye.
He paused and narrowed his gaze when a gust of wind lifted a lock of long, black hair in the snow. Though Hayden knew the woman was most likely dead, he hurried to her anyway, hopeful he would leave the mountain with at least one alive. He spotted the pool of bright red blood in the snow that gave him hope she was still alive.
“Fallon,” he barked while scraping away the flurries and ice from around the small, much too slim body.
The woman was lying on her stomach, an arm bent with her hand near her face and matted ebony hair obscuring her features. Her fingers were slim as they dug into the snow as if she had tried to crawl away.
Hayden could only imagine the pain she had been put through, the heartache Deirdre had given her. He held his breath as he put a finger beneath her nose and felt a soft stirring of air.
At least they would leave the cursed mountain with one life. He reached for her and paused again. He didn’t want to hurt her, but it had been so long since he had been gentle, he wasn’t sure he knew how. All he knew was battle and death.
Maybe he should allow Fallon care for her. But as soon as the thought went through his mind, Hayden rejected it. He found her, he would see to her. He didn’t know why, he just knew that it was important to him.
Hayden blew out a breath and slowly, firmly placed his hands on the woman’s body before he tenderly turned her over. Her arm fell to the side, lifeless and still. Disquiet settled in his gut like a stone.
He shifted so that he leaned over her, shielding her from the onslaught of snow. Once he had her in his arms, Hayden brushed the hair from her face to see her incredibly long black lashes spiked with frozen snow.
He felt something shift inside him when he saw her face was pale as death, but even beneath the scratches, dried blood, and ice he could see her beauty, her timeless allure.
She had high cheekbones and a small, pert nose. Her brows were as black as the midnight sky and arched over her eyes. Her lips were full, sensual, and her neck long and lean.
But it was her cream colored skin, so flawless and perfect, that made him reach out and stroke her cheek with the back of his finger.
A shock of something primitive and urgent went through his body like a bolt of lightning. He couldn’t take his eyes from her, couldn’t stop touching her. Her body struggled for breath, struggled for life, proving she was a fighter. Even with the elements taking the breath from her one heartbeat at a time, she didn’t give up.
Something inside him broke at that moment. He hadn’t been able to save his family or the many Druids on Cairn Toul, but he would save this woman, whoever she was.
A feeling of protectiveness wound through him. It had been so long since he’d felt protective of anyone or anything that he almost hadn’t recognized the emotion. Now that he did, however, it grew stronger the longer he held her in his arms.
He would make sure she survived. He would ensure she was protected at all times. It wouldn’t make up for the lives of his family or the Druids, but he had to do it.
Hayden found himself wishing she’d open her eyes so he could see them. He wanted to give his oath to her right then, for her to know that he would fight with her. Instead, she lay unconscious in his arms.
His vow would have to wait, but nothing could stop him from pledging himself to her.
“Does she live?” Fallon asked.
Hayden glanced up startled to find Fallon near when he hadn’t heard him approach. That wasn’t like Hayden, but then again, he had never held such a lovely woman in his arms before, especially one that needed him as she did.
“Just. She’s bleeding badly, though I cannot tell where she is wounded.”
“Judging by the blood on your hand, I would say somewhere on her back.”
Hayden looked at the hand holding her and grimaced. He doubted they had much time to save her. For the first time in…ages…the need to defend, to shield someone consumed him, drove him. “She’s shivering.”
“Then let’s get her out of here,” Fallon said.
Hayden lifted her small frame in his arms. She was light, but through her clothes he could feel the sumptuous curves that proclaimed her a woman. He gave a nod to Fallon and waited. Fallon laid his hand on Hayden’s arm, and in a blink they were standing in the great hall of MacLeod Castle.
“God’s teeth!” someone yelled at their sudden appearance in the castle.
“Sonya!” Fallon bellowed.
The hall swarmed with Warriors, but Hayden only had eyes for the woman. He wanted, nay needed, her to survive, and was surprised to find himself praying – something he hadn’t done since before his family’s murder. He decided then and there he would protect her with his life.
He felt the warm stickiness of her blood as it traveled from his hand down his arm to his elbow to drop on the stone floor. Her breathing was ragged, her body so still he would think her dead if he didn’t see her chest rising and falling, slowly but surely.
“Sonya, hurry!” Hayden shouted. The thought of holding another dead body in his arms made Hayden’s heart quicken with dread.
Death surrounded him, always had, most likely always would. But now, he wanted life for this small woman, whoever she was.
There was a whooshing sound as Broc landed in the great hall, Sonya in his arms. Broc folded his large, sleek indigo wings against him as he set Sonya on her feet and pushed his god down and returned to normal.
Sonya said not a word as she rushed to Hayden. The single, thick braid holding her fiery hair hung down her back with small tendrils curling about her face.
“Put her on the table,” Sonya instructed him.
Hayden didn’t want to relinquish his hold on the woman, but he knew he had no choice if he wanted her to survive. He glanced at her, at her parted lips and ethereal face. “She’s cold.”
“And I’ll get her warm as soon as I heal her,” Sonya told him, her amber eyes meeting his gaze. “Let me heal her, Hayden.”
Quinn took a step toward the table. “Broc-“
“I know,” Broc answered.
Hayden looked between the two Warriors to find their gazes locked on the female in his arms. There was something in their tone, something he should recognize, but he couldn’t focus on anything but the woman.