Everyone assumed MacGregor Tulloch's heir to be his grand-nephew David, a local favorite, but when it is discovered that MacGregor left no will, David's grasping cousin Hardy submits his own claim to the inheritance, an estate that controls most of the island's land. And while Hardy doesn't enjoy much popular support, he has the backing of a shadowy group of North Sea oil investors. The courts have frozen the estate's assets while the competing claims are investigated, leaving many of the residents in financial limbo. The future of the island-and its traditional way of life-hangs in the balance.
Loni Ford is enjoying her rising career in a large investment firm in Washington, DC. Yet in spite of her outward success, she is privately plagued by questions of identity. Orphaned as a young child, she was raised by her paternal grandparents, and while she loves them dearly, she feels completely detached from her roots. That is until a mysterious letter arrives from a Scottish solicitor. . . .
Past and present collide in master storyteller Phillips's dramatic new saga of loss and discovery, of grasping and grace, and of the dreams of men and women everywhere.
Michael Phillips is a bestselling author with more than 70 of his own titles. In addition, he has served as editor/redactor of nearly 30 more books. He is known as the man responsible for the reawakened interest in George MacDonald of the last 30 years. In addition to the MacDonald titles adapted/edited for today's reader, his publishing efforts in bringing back full-length quality facsimile editions also spawned renewed interest in MacDonald's original work. Michael and his wife, Judy, spend time each year in Scotland but make their home near Sacramento, California.
I really loved the writing style of this book. The author is so poetic in his description of things and that pulled me into the story first. I have never read any of Mr. Phillips books so this was my first experience at reading his wonderful writing. Having said this, although I enjoyed many portions of the book, it was at times slow and it was tempting to skip ahead pages (although I didn't) to get past the parts that felt like they were dragging. Also, trying to understand some of the Scottish dialect was just almost painful. I have read many books where they use the dialect of the Scots and have never had this much trouble reading it. It, too, made reading this very long book painfully slow.
This story is focused on the setting of the highlands of Scotland and the clan that has an island. After the patriarch dies, leaving no will, the infighting begins for control. There were the characters I was really pulling for and those I just couldn't stand, but of course, this made for good friction in the story.
The book is the first book in the "Secrets of the Shetlands" story and it definitely left me hanging. I'm sure this was to help us have anticipation for the second book, however, I would have liked just a little more of a finalization for some of the story lines.
I will more than likely read the second book, though, because I feel that this story deserves a chance and I would like to know what happens with the characters. Again, I love Mr. Phillips writing style. He is very descriptive in his writing and poetic and I found that enjoyable. However, this book had so much lag to it, it was hard to finish, and that's never a good thing for an author.
*This book was provided to me for my honest review by LitFuse Publicity Group
Blessings - Julie