Hot for Scots: 11 Must-Read Scottish Historical Romances

Hot for Scots: 11 Must-Read Scottish Historical Romances


Maybe it’s the burr, maybe it’s the plaid, but there is something about a Scot. In fiction they’re most often portrayed as strong, fearless, and fierce in their love. Whether you’re new to the genre or you’ve been addicted since Jamie Fraser first walked onto the scene (and into our hearts), we think you’ll find something here that you’ll enjoy.

When a Scot Ties the Knot by Tessa Dare

Readers, this is one of my personal favorites. Madeline Gracechurch suffers from social anxiety and decides to avoid her first London season by inventing a fictional sweetheart. She makes him a Scottish soldier, names him Captain MacKenzie, and immediately ships him off to war. After years of sending letters to keep up her ruse, she claims that he’s been killed in battle. Imagine her surprise when a flesh and blood soldier by the name of Captain Logan MacKenzie shows up on her door demanding her hand in marriage. Turns out she should’ve been more creative in naming her beau.

A Garden in the Rain by Lynn Kurland

If time travel’s your thing, we’ve got the perfect book for you. Highlander Patrick MacLeod isn’t looking for love. After the death of his wife, all he wants is a peaceful and quiet 20th century life. Enter Madelyn Phillips, an American on vacation who has lost her luggage. Against his better judgement, Patrick offers her his assistance and a friendship (albeit one with unspoken attraction) begins to form. But Madelyn’s troubles aren’t over yet. When she’s accidentally whisked back to the 14th century and in grave danger, Patrick is the only one who can save her. This is part of Lynn Kurland’s MacLeod series, so readers have quite a few more time-hopping adventures in store.

Hero in the Highlands by Suzanne Enoch

A large number of Scottish romances focus on a Highlander wooing an English or American girl, but this novel features a fearless Scottish lass who refuses to let an English Duke take over her castle. The home in question has belonged to the Maxwell clan for years, and Fiona Blackstock isn’t eager to see it pass into the hands of Major Gabriel Forrester. To be clear, Gabriel himself isn’t ecstatic at the idea of leaving his life as a soldier and having to worry about a castle he didn’t ask for inherited from a distant relative. But he isn’t one to turn away from his duty, and charming Fiona is a battle he’s prepared to win.

Wild Wicked Scot by Julia London

Julia London’s Highland Grooms series kicks off with a reluctant wife returning to her husband after three long years apart. Margot Armstrong knew she might not have a choice in the man she married, but she never imagined that her father would give her away to Scottish chieftain Arran McKenzie. Their passion is undeniable, but outside of the bedroom, they’re constantly at odds. She fled the keep, hoping to never return. Yet after three years she finds herself back there, on a mission from her father to uncover if her husband is truly as loyal to the crown as he claims.

The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie by Jennifer Ashley 

All of London says the same thing: Ian Mackenzie is mad. Rumors have it that he spent years in an asylum. They say he’s dangerous, wild, and untrustworthy. So why does Beth Ackerley find herself drawn to him? Her own life has been hard enough. She was raised by an alcoholic father and a sickly mother. Beth has struggled, worked, and sacrificed for years. Now all she wants is the chance to create a peaceful and happy life for herself. Despite all of this, she wonders if that life can wait until she’s gotten to know more about the mysterious Ian MacKenzie.

The Groom Wore Plaid by Gayle Callen

The wedding of Maggie McCallum and Owen Duff is meant to be a happy affair, and their marriage should harmoniously join two opposing clans. But Maggie is doing everything in her power to call off the ceremony. She’s known Owen for years and her feelings for him are strong and true. She’s also cursed with a gift of sight and she’s seen a premonition of his death on their wedding day. Maggie refuses to condemn the man she loves to death, though she may have to if Owen refuses to let her go.

A Scot in the Dark by Sarah MacLean

Miss Lillian Hargrove has been conned. She thought that she was in love with a sensitive and talented artist, and when he asked to paint her nude she agreed without question. Lily realized too late that her scheming beau cared more about making a name for himself than protecting her reputation. When he announces that he’s unveiling the piece, Lily knows that she must find a way to stop him. With all of polite society whispering about her, Lily has no choice but to turn to the Duke of Warnick for help. Too bad the Duke is a Scotsman named Alec who is as reluctant to accept his newfound dukedom as he is to care for a troublesome ward. Readers looking for humor, wit, and cleverness should definitely put this at the top of their TBR pile.

An English Bride in Scotland by Lynsay Sands

Ross MacKay is far from pleased to learn that his intended ran off to marry another man, but the lady’s family has a solution: Marry the girl’s sister instead. When Ross sees Annabel, he’s more than happy to take her to be his wife. But he doesn’t know her best kept secret. Annabel spent years training to be a nun and was about to complete her journey when her mother pulled her from the abbey and declared she’d be marrying a Scot rather than God. Annabel spent more time in prayer than preparing to be a wife. She doesn’t know much about running a home or pleasing her new husband. But if she has to learn with anyone, she’s happy it’s Ross.

Highlander Most Wanted by Maya Banks

When Bowen Montgomery breaks through the gates of the McHugh keep, he’s prepared to fight and unseat the reigning laird. He wasn’t at all ready to find Genevieve McInnes, a woman held captive for years and believed to be dead by her family. As Bowen and his men take over, Genevieve refuses to leave. Though the current inhabitants aren’t fond of her, she knows what it is like to suffer at the hands of a cruel laird and wants to be sure of Bowen’s intentions for the keep before leaving. Once things have settled down, her plans are to enter an abbey, that is if she can fight the hold Bowen suddenly has on her heart.

Beyond the Highland Mist by Karen Marie Moning 

What’s a 20th century woman to do when she finds herself in medieval Scotland? Marry the reigning laird, of course. Mind you, Adrienne de Simone is not supportive of this union. In fact, she plans on keeping her distance from Hawk until she can find her way back home to Seattle. But with each passing day her defenses weaken and she finds herself giving in to his seductions bit by bit, until she realizes that she may truly be falling for this man. This is the first in Karen Marie Moning’s Highlander series. There’s a decent amount of crossover, so readers will find it most helpful to start from the beginning of this one.

Outlander by Diana Gabaldon 

Last, but certainly not least, is Outlander. Maybe you’ve been wooed by Jamie Fraser before and are looking for a reread. Perhaps you’ve been giving your TV screen heart eyes as you watch the STARZ adaptation and want to finally read the book, or you may be completely new to the entire series (and how lucky you are). This is an epic tale that bounces between 1945 and 1743. Claire Randall, a combat nurse, is enjoying her second honeymoon with her husband when she suddenly finds herself thrown back in time and into the arms of a Scottish warrior in the middle of a clan war. This is a must-read for any fans of Scottish romances.


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