Welcome Wednesday is delighted to have a return visit, today, from Cathie Dunn. Cathie's an author friend from The Wild Rose Press who also writes for Crooked Cat Publishing. She's come to talk about the setting for her historical novel - Highland Arms - which I thoroughly enjoyed reading.
So, let's find out what Cathie has to say about my favourite country- Scotland. (Yes, I am a bit biased, and I admit it!)
Hi Cathie! I believe you're going to talk about a part of Scotland that you love so much that you used it for the setting of 'Highland Arms'? I find it a tall order to name my favourite part of Scotland- there are just so many great locations to choose from - but where you have chosen is an area which has great memories for me too.
Thank you for hosting me today, Nancy. It’s wonderful to visit your lovely blog again.
Today, I wish to give your readers a glimpse into the Scottish Highlands. Into my favourite place in all Scotland, to be precise: Glencoe and Ballachulish.
|courtesy of Cathie Dunn|
Having visited the area many times, the decision of where to set Highland Arms was an easy one. Even the ‘Drovers Inn’ mentioned in the novel is based on a real inn: the cosy Clachaig Inn!
Baile a' Chaolais, the village's Gaelic name, means 'village of the narrows'. It lies at the junction where Loch Leven flows into the much larger Loch Linnhe. The original village lay in what is now North Ballachulish (Highland Arms is based just a couple of miles north along the shore of Loch Linnhe), with a settlement in South Ballachulish, now linked by a bridge, established later.
Ballachulish is less than a mile from Glencoe village, at the entrance to the Glencoe hill range. The small villages nestle at the bottom of hills, with clouds always hovering low over the mountaintops. It is a magical place, highly atmospheric.
Connoisseurs of Scottish history will know the sad story of the place, the Massacre at Glencoe that befell Clan Macdonald in 1692. You can still sense the desolation.
Driving out of the Glencoe range, the view gives way over Loch Leven towards Loch Linnhe and more hills beyond. Breathtaking!
Lovers of Scottish romance must visit the area if they’re planning a visit. Inspirational and awe-inspiring. That reminds me, I’m overdue another visit... :-)
(ps . For the people who like to know how to pronounce things and haven't a clue about Ballachulish, try saying BAL-A- HOOL-ISH )
Highland Arms- the story is about....
Betrayed by her brother’s lies, Catriona MacKenzie is banished from her Edinburgh home to her godmother’s remote manor in the Highlands. While her father ponders her fate, Catriona’s insatiable curiosity leads her straight into trouble--and into the arms of a notorious Highlander.
Five years after an ill-fated Jacobite rebellion, Rory Cameron works as a smuggler to raise money for the cause--until Catriona uncovers a plot against him and exposes his activities. Now Rory is faced with a decision that could save their lives or destroy them both.
You can buy Highland Arms from:Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Highland-Arms-ebook/dp/B005E03J72/
Wild Rose Press: http://www.wildrosepublishing.com/maincatalog_v151/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=4560
Cathie's sharing a little bit with us today -to whet the appetite...
After a brief chat with Auntie Meg over a cup of tea, real tea from the Colonies, Catriona retired to her bedroom and slept for an hour. Although the fatigue from her journey still lingered, she felt refreshed, her mind settled.
She made her way to the dining parlor where the table was set, and a fire roared in a large stone fireplace built deep into the wall. Crossing the room, she went to the tall, narrow window and pulled the thick brocade curtains aside.
With dusk settling, the view across the loch took her breath away. Low light shimmered on the water’s surface, reflecting the last glimmer of the evening sky. Across the water, she watched the shadows sink deeper down the hills.
When the door behind her creaked, Catriona jumped. Hastily, she dropped the curtains back into place and turned, expecting her brother.
But it was not Angus who closed the door and faced her. Her pulse began to drum in her ears, and her hands shook from the unexpected surprise. She grabbed the curtains behind her for reassurance.
He leaned against the door, his dark blond hair washed and tied again at his neck. This time, his muscular frame was clad in worn trews and a fresh linen shirt, loosely fastened. A trace of mud clung to his black boots.
She looked at his face and held her breath, caught as she was by a now familiar set of piercing green eyes. Her throat went dry. The last time she saw those eyes, at the Drovers Inn, they’d been friendly, even flirtatious. Now they were cold, dark, and as forbidding as a loch in winter, bereft of the warmth of the sun.
He sounds like he just might be trouble for Catriona! But I've read it already, so I'm not going to say any more since I hate spoilers.
About Cathie Dunn...
...she writes romantic suspense & adventure set in Scotland, England and Normandy. A hobby historian, her focus is on medieval and Jacobite eras.
She has two historical novels published: Highland Arms, a romantic Scottish adventure, and Dark Deceit, the first in The Anarchy Trilogy.
Recently, Cathie self-published Silent Deception, a romantic spooky novella set in Victorian Cornwall. All her books are available on Amazon.
Cathie lives in Scotland with her husband and two cats and currently works on a contemporary romantic suspense set in Idaho, US, and a medieval Scottish romance.