Friday, March 26, 2010

Here Burns My Candle by Liz Curtis Higgs


A mother who cannot face her future.
A daughter who cannot escape her past.

Lady Elisabeth Kerr is a keeper of secrets. A Highlander by birth and a Lowlander by marriage, she honors the auld ways, even as doubts and fears stir deep within her.

Her husband, Lord Donald, has secrets of his own, well hidden from the household, yet whispered among the town gossips.

His mother, the dowager Lady Marjory, hides gold beneath her floor and guilt inside her heart.
Though her two abiding passions are maintaining her place in society and coddling her grown sons, Marjory’s many regrets, buried in Greyfriars Churchyard, continue to plague her.

One by one the Kerr family secrets begin to surface, even as bonny Prince Charlie and his rebel army ride into Edinburgh in September 1745, intent on capturing the crown.

A timeless story of love and betrayal, loss and redemption, flickering against the vivid backdrop of eighteenth-century Scotland, Here Burns My Candle illumines the dark side of human nature, even as hope, the brightest of tapers, lights the way home.
My thoughts:
I love books about Scotland. I think one of the first I stumbled upon was Outlander by Diana Gabaldon about ten years ago. Since then it is one of my favorite places to visit in books. I would love to one day go there but so far I've just used my imagination, less jet lag that way I guess! I read books set both in current years and set centuries ago, it just depends upon my mood!
This book is part of a blog tour and I was very happy to take part in it. It was very interesting to read about how Lowlanders in Scotland viewed the Highlander who were siding with Prince Charlie at the time of the uprising in 1745. I have read other books set in this time and conflict but realized as I read this that they were all set in the Highlands. Elizabeth is a Highlander who fled the advances of an older man by coming to Edinburgh to attend school and then married a lord and remained there as his wife with his mother and brother. It was hard for me to read about how Elizabeth's mother in law never really accepted her because of her background and her different accent and ways of doing things. Marjory much favored her other daughter-in-law, Janet, who she handpicked for her younger son. It was easy to see Elizabeth's loneliness even as part of the household and how much she held back of herself in an attempt to fit in.
Since this book is set in a historical time period for which the outcome is already known there weren't surprises in that regard, but in how the characters cope with what life deals out to them there were surprises. To see how they react to infidelity and loss of wealth shows who they are beneath the mask they show to society.
This was a very enjoyable read and I found myself routing for the rebel army even knowing what was to come! This book was provided for review by WaterBrook Multnomah. You can purchase the book by going here:

Author Bio:

LIZ CURTIS HIGGS is the author of twenty-seven books with three million copies in print, including: her best-selling historical novels, Thorn in My Heart, Fair Is the Rose, Christy Award-winner Whence Came a Prince, and Grace in Thine Eyes, a Christy Award finalist; My Heart’s in the Lowlands: Ten Days in Bonny Scotland, an armchair travel guide to Galloway; and her contemporary novels, Mixed Signals, a Rita Award finalist, and Bookends, a Christy Award finalist. Visit the author’s extensive website at
You can view the trailor for the book here: (I really need to learn how to embed better- anyone with suggestions please leave them in the comments, sometimes I feel so far for being tech savvy!)

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