The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie

3/07/2010 08:33:00 AM / Posted by Kris /


The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie (Highland Pleasures Book 1) by Jennifer Ashley (A)
The year is 1881. Meet the Mackenzie family--rich, powerful, dangerous, eccentric. A lady couldn't be seen with them without ruin. Rumors surround them--of tragic violence, of their mistresses, of their dark appetites, of scandals that set England and Scotland abuzz.
The youngest brother, Ian, known as the Mad Mackenzie, spent most of his young life in an asylum, and everyone agrees he is decidedly odd. He's also hard and handsome and has a penchant for Ming pottery and beautiful women.
Beth Ackerley, widow, has recently come into a fortune. She has decided that she wants no more drama in her life. She was raised in drama--an alcoholic father who drove them into the workhouse, a frail mother she had to nurse until her death, a fussy old lady she became constant companion to. No, she wants to take her money and find peace, to travel, to learn art, to sit back and fondly remember her brief but happy marriage to her late husband.
And then Ian Mackenzie decides he wants her.

At our first FL blogger meeting, Jill and I were talking as we were shopping and were discussing Jennifer Ashley's newest release because we both had it. Then she asked if I had read this book, I hadn't. She told me it was one of her favorites from 2009 so I had to go find it. My library had it so I grabbed it. I read it in one day. I am not a big historical reader as I prefer contemporaries and paranormals. I am very glad that I picked this up.

Lord Ian is a unique hero, and I loved that. For me he made the book. I loved his cluelessness. He was basically a historical nerd. He has an eidetic memory which means that he remembers everything he sees and hears. (Like Dr. Spencer Reid on Criminal Minds)
The story starts with Beth Ackerly being engaged to a nasty man named Mather. Ian warns her about Mather's predilictions and then proposes to her. Beth refuses but also breaks things off with Mather.
Beth is a strong heroine. She was raised in the slums but met a nice lady who hired her and then left Beth her wealthy estate when she died. She is an interesting blend of strength and naivete. Because of that naivete and optimism she does have one or two TSTL moments but I still liked her.
Ian, because of his memory, lack of social understanding and a couple of other things was put into an asylum when he was a child. His brother got him released years later after their father's death. But he is still labeled by most as "mad" because of his mannerisms and difficulty focusing on what is going on. I loved his character. It was such a nice change from the usual rakish characters in historicals.

Loved this book, I give it an A. Thanks Jill for the recommendation :)

Here is Jill's review as well.

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Comment by Tracy on 3/09/2010 12:54 AM

One of my favorite books! I loved Ian and of course Beth is so perfect for him. I'm so happy to hear you loved it. :)

Comment by Kristie (J) on 3/16/2010 6:43 PM

Wasn't this one great?? It was by far my favourite of 2009 and I can hardly wait for the next one in the series.

Comment by nath on 3/16/2010 8:55 PM

Great book, isn't it? I enjoyed it a lot too for Ian :) LOL, historical nerd... but what can you be nerdy about in that time period? LOL, bowls... it just doesn't have the same ring as videogames and Star Trek :P

Comment by Jill D. on 3/21/2010 7:52 PM

YAY!!!! Oh I am so glad that you enjoyed it! You never know when you recommend a book if that person is going to like it as much as I did and especially since you don't typically read this genre. Well, if you ever are interested in any other historicals, let me know :)

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