A HIGHLANDER WALKS INTO A BAR Laura Trentham
A Highland, Georgia Novel
St. Martin's Paperbacks
ISBN-13:  978-1-250-31501-4
July 2019
Contemporary Romance

Highland, Georgia Present Day

When Isabel Buchanan's mother Rose returns from a trip to Scotland, Izzy is surprised at the airport with the man that also returned with her, Gareth Connors.  Rose has been a widow for a long time, and Izzy is astounded at the thought of her mother bringing home a man, especially at this time of year.  Izzy's father started the Highland Festival every July on the grounds of their house, Stonehaven, in Georgia, and there's only a couple weeks left to get everything ready. Izzy is an accountant and part-time writer but planning the festival every year is a full-time job for at least a month.  Before her father started the festival, the town of Highland was almost a ghost town, and now it's a thriving area, even during the rest of the year.  Who is this Gareth, and is he after the estate built by her great-grandfather?

Alasdair Blackmoor is ready to leave New York after a week of work there when he gets a phone call from his mother.  His uncle Gareth, the Earl of Cairndow, has met an American tart according to his mother, and Alasdair must find out if that women is after his money.  When he finds Garth, it is to find out everyone thinks he is the caretaker at his estate in Scotland and has volunteered to help with the Highland festival and games.  Looks like Alasdair is also staying to keep an eye on his uncle and on the alluring Izzy.

Everyone is lying about who they are, and Izzy is about exhausted trying to deal with all the details with little help from her giggly mother.  Her mother GIGGLY?  When Alasdair finds another worker in his investment company is interesting their boss on purchasing Izzy's and her mother's property for a Saudi Arabian prince, Alasdair knows now he has to stay to avert disaster.  Told from Izzy's and Alasdair's points of view, both of them lost their fathers at an early age and deal with the trauma even after over ten years.  Alasdair is hiding a half-brother from everyone and hadn't even seen Gareth in years after his father's untimely death.  It will be a miracle if Alasdair can break through Izzy's walls.

Secondary characters are Gareth and Rose, enjoying a new romance, and Izzy's best friend Anna, who somehow teaches Izzy the festival's opening dance.

A HIGHLANDER WALKS INTO A BAR is a rousing and romantic read filled with lots of Scottish history and lore, even here in a tiny town in Georgia.  How will Gareth and Rose deal with her house in Georgia and his estate in Scotland?  And how will Izzy and Alasdair manage with his job in London and her life in Georgia?  There are many twists and turns in this rollicking good tale.

Carolyn Crisher