Review: Sounds of the Heart

Posted May 4, 2012 by Vampbard in 3.5 stars, Giveaway, Historical Romance, Rating B, Reviews Tags: , , , ,

Sound of the Heart
Release Date: May 1, 2012
Publisher: Berkley Sensation
ISBN: 978-0425247341
Genre: Historical Romance (paranormal)
Format(s): Paperback (336 pgs), e-book
Book Source: Publisher

About the book:

      Dougal MacDonnell, a fierce warrior from the Highlands of Scotland, is able to hear the thoughts of other men and dream how the future will unfold. Devastated by the loss of his family during the Battle of Culloden in 1746, he fosters a deep hatred for the English. But when Glenna, the love of his life and a Scottish outlaw, is captured and shipped overseas, Dougal is forced to join an English army made of vanquished Scots. Now fighting on the side of his sworn enemies, he embarks on a journey that will take him across the seas to the colonies. There he will risk everything for the chance to find his true love.

What VampBards talking about:

      Sound of the Heart, second novel for author Genevieve Graham, seems to actually be the second title in a series.  It focuses on the struggles of Dougal MacDonnell, brother to Andrew from Under the Same Sky.
      Ms. Graham threw me for a loop!  I never predicted that she’d create the plot turn that she provided with Adian!  While there were signs that this specific turn was evident, I didn’t figure she’d go THAT direction!
      I love Glenna!  She’s a strong, independent woman that really doesn’t need a man to ‘take care of’ her.  I see her functioning in this setting independent of Dougal, and while their relationship is a beautiful and meaningful plot point, I see her as bolstering her personal value by engaging in a romantic liaison with Dougal.  To further the twists and turns of a wonderfully crafted plot, Ms. Graham puts the Red Coats (British soldiers) in the role of bad guys.  Where Glenna and the Brits are concerned, besides taking over Scotland for the English, a lovely distraction that provides the plot with intense highs and lows as Dougal searches for his true love.  Glenna becomes her own person even more so than in the first portion of the story after she is once again at the mercy of the Brits.  Once Glenna has reached the Colonies, she does what is necessary to survive.  While she is violated, she manages to out-think her ‘captor’ in order to preserve her sense of self and sanity.  Glenna is definitely one gutsy gal.  She is a clear thinker, and is able to adjust to new situations as they arise.  That is what makes her a fabulous heroine.
      Dougal MacDonnell, our hottie hero originally introduced in a kilt (mmm… kilts!), finds himself in the role of protector for a pair of boys while prisoner.  After a valiant escape from captivity, Dougal finds himself on the streets of London (ewww…gross!) with Adian.  The catch…Adian is not what he seems, as we learned after the pair returned to Scotland and set-up housekeeping in an abandoned home.  To keep things interesting, Dougal has a talent similar to Andrew (from Graham’s first book, Under the Same Sky).  This talent definitely benefits Dougal as well as Adian during their escape and relocation to Scotland.
      I see Dougal as a powerful and loving Highlander.  A warrior and a lover.  All the things that make a great hero.  Ms. Graham did a fabulous job developing his character.  Kudos!
      The plot of Sound of the Heart takes a turn about half-way through the title.  Those blasted Brits interfere, and once again, Dougal has something taken away from him that he values more than life.  I appreciated the way Ms. Graham expressed his loss, as well as how he handled it.  The enormity of Dougal’s fight to find Glenna created an undertone for the second half of the title that was similar to the sense of loss from the first.  While Dougal seemed to mourn the loss of his family, he never succumbed to despair, even when it seemed that he was the only member of his Clan to survive the battle that caused his incarceration.  While he knew he’d lost his father and youngest brother, there was always hope that Andrew and his mother were still alive.  We learned in Under the Same Sky that Dougal and Andrew’s mother perished, probably at the hands of the Red Coats.  Andrew buried her.  Dougal, however, steeled his reserve, and did the unthinkable to simply survive long enough to be reunited with Glenna.
      There were a few things that I’d wished were done differently throughout the course of this title, but nothing that caused an intense issue.  I’m impressed by this second title by Graham, and hope to read more from her in the future.

VampBards Rating:

Liked it – recommend (B+)
Purchase Info:
BLOG TOUR (plus Giveaway!) Readers: I am happy to announce that we are a part of Genevieve Graham’s blog tour for Sound of the Heart. The blog tour runs during the month of May. The Grand Prize for the tour is a signed copy of Sound of the Heart PLUS a four cd set of relaxation cds created by her incredibly talented musical friends, Cori Ashley and Ed Franks. Please visit Ms. Graham’s blog tour website for more details and be sure to enter using the form below!

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