by Madeline Martin
Series: Mercenary Maidens #1
Narrator: Dave Gillies
Length: 11 hours and 11 minutes
Genres: Historical Romance
Purchase*: Amazon | Audible *affiliate
Narration: 4 cups
Ariana Fitzroy has lost her family and her fortune. The fight for survival leads her to the shadowed card games of court, where she discovers she has quite a talent for slipping cards into her favor. While the winnings are enough to sustain her at present, they will not last forever . . . Connor Grant, trainer of the fallen women from the English court and personal assassin to the king, is just as broken as the women he trains. After losing his own land and all his people in a brutal attack from a trusted friend, he has no choice but to rebuild any way he sees possible-even if it means going against everything he's ever believed in. After catching Ariana cheating at cards, Connor has a new trainee to instruct at one of the king's many confiscated castles. In the dilapidated ruins, he discovers Ariana is more than she appears and falls in love with her incredible tenacity and dedication-a love that is challenged by Connor's chance at reclaiming the inheritance he once lost and has sought so desperately to regain.
I was in the mood for a good historical romance and decided to listen to HIGHLAND SPY by Madeline Martin. The audio narrated by Dave Gillies promised female spies, assassins, and romance. From the exciting missions to the slow building romance, Martin had me hooked.
Five reasons to grab your earbuds and listen to Highland Spy
- HIGHLAND SPY is perfect for fans of tales wrapped in romance, history, and suspense. The royal English court and hillsides of Scotland in the seventeenth century were the perfect backdrop to this exciting tale. Martin sheds light on the trials women face in this era while highlighting their strengths. Conner Grant, an assassin for the king, trains fallen females to be spies for the crown. If you love espionage and intrigue paired with strong characters and romance you will be delighted.
- Conner Grant is a complicated and honorable man. You can feel the responsibility and struggles he faces with regard to these women and the crown. As Martin peeled back his layers, I found I connected and understood him. It was fun seeing him train these women, face his past, and succumb to Ariana.
- Despite her social status, Ariana Fitzroy our heroine has had a tough life. When Conner discovers her cheating at cards, she knows she is done. I really felt for Ariana and the lot in life she was given. She is tough, compassionate, smart, and determined. In her quest to prove her worth, she muddles things. More than once I wondered how she was going to get out of the mess she created. Despite working for the crown, Ariana enjoys the empowerment and friendship with the other women.
- I loved the complexities of the story but also how wonderfully paced the tale was. This was my first experience with Madeline Martin but it won’t be my last. Her writing easily allowed me to slip in, imagine the characters and become caught up in the different threads. While I anticipated a happily ever after, the danger, twists, and surprises along the way made for an addictive listen. The romance developed slowly and had its share of drama, heat, and banter. I quite enjoyed hearing it all unfold.
- Dave Gillies narrates and he has the perfect accent and pacing to enhance these highlanders and spies. I had a delightful time listening and enjoyed both his male and female voices.
Well crafted with rogue highlanders and spies HIGHLAND SPY delivered an addictive historical romantic suspense.
[bctt tweet=”Highland Spy by Madeline Martin delivered an addictive historical romantic suspense” username=”kimbacaffeinate”]
I listened to this recently as well, Kimberly. I think my review posts next week?? Anyway, I really enjoy my intro to Martin as well. I loved the tenacity of the women working for Connor and I loved how honorable Connor was. I also liked the intrigue. I thought it was nice that it was more an exciting tale with some romance folded in. 🙂 I’m thrilled you enjoyed this one too.
Yes, I was delighted the romance was served on the side giving way to the story 🙂
Female spies in a historical romance? Sold! And this review makes the hero and the heroine sound so appealing. The story, as well. Definitely picking this one up.
I really enjoyed the couple and yes female spies….so cool.
Oh wow great review Kim. I have to admit that I’m not a big fan of historical romance I do have a few authors that I read in that genre but those are usually my go to authors who I would read if they wrote text books 🙂
But you’ve really gotten me intrigued with this one plus its #1 in a new series and by an author that’s new to me. It is going on my list thanks!
Really? This shocks me, and I don’t know why. I overdosed with a five-year obsession and then abandoned them completely, until a few years ago, and now I read one or two here and there.
Definitely sounds like one I need to pick up.
Thanks Ali. I hope your weather is behaving this week 🙂
The Bibliophile Babe
Hm, may have to add this to the TBR! Great review!
Feed that pile..you know it’s hungry 🙂
I read this book and really enjoyed it. I loved the spy factor to it as well. I can’t wait for the rest of the books in the series. Looks like I have to listen to this one as well. 🙂 ~Aleen
Sweet, I am so glad you enjoyed it as well. I am excited for the next one.
This sounds very good. I like the spy elements that give more story than just romance. Thanks for sharing the info.
I am the same and don’t mind if the romance is served on the side.
I’m so glad you enjoyed this one! It sounds really good, and Ariana sounds fantastic! Wonderful review 🙂
Melissa (Books and Things)
Oh I love the sound of this one. I have been more into spy novels set in historical settings lately. I do think that I would enjoy this one as much as you did. Brilly review!
I love this type of setting, and it was so cool seeing women trained to be spies.
“HIGHLAND SPY is perfect for fans of tales wrapped in romance, history, and suspense. ” Great endorsement. Thanks for the post.
Tyler H. Jolley
What a great historical romance. The character seem very fleshed out and intriguing. Thanks for sharing!
It was fun and I loved the premise.
this has totally been on my radar, I love that it has spies and assassins? yes please. Plus, you seemed to have enjoyed it which make me even happier
I did and who can resist spies and assassins!
This one was a win for me, too. Oh cool, glad the audio was a good bet.
Can’t wait for the posse of other gals to get their turn after loving Colin and Ariana’s story.
Me too Sophia. It was such fun.
Not really my kind of book but glad to see you liked it.
I passed this one up and been kicking myself for doing so. Now your review has me kicking myself harder. lol On a sidenote, I now know what I can do with my leftover giftcards.
I have so been there done that Angela!
This DOES look good! I love it when the heroine missteps and always seems to find her way out of the mess.
Right. It was such fun listening to her wiggle out of it.
Quinn's Book Nook
What an interesting story premise. Is the romance the main focus? Or is it more spy stuff?
It was nicely balanced Quinn.
Oh Kim this book sounds great. I looooove historical romance, the last “spy” historical romance I read was by The Ghost by Monica McCarty part of her The Highland Guard series. It was very good.
I hope you get to try it Maggie!
Highlanders and spies, nice
Yes. It was a fun listen
I am in the mood too for a good historical romance! I will put this on my list, thanks for sharing.
Enjoy Cindy 🙂
I always like when all these things are mixed together, romance, mystery and all
Me too Melliane
Geybie's Book Blog
Yay.. historical romance. Female spies? This sounds interesting. Can this be read standalone?
Yes, but I am hoping ya love it and want book 2.
A cheater at cards … I like her already. 😀
LOL, she was quite clever.