Audie Award Nominee, Romance, 2013
It was whispered all through London society that he was a murderer, that he'd spent his youth in an asylum and was not to be trusted - especially with a lady. Any woman caught in his presence was immediately ruined. Yet Beth found herself inexorably drawn to the Scottish lord whose hint of a brogue wrapped around her like silk and whose touch could draw her into a world of ecstasy.
Despite his decadence and intimidating intelligence, she could see he needed help. Her help. Because suddenly the only thing that made sense to her was the madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie.
©2011 Jennifer Ashley (P)2012 Tantor
"The Mackenzie brothers will leave you breathless." (Elizabeth Hoyt)
I just Love the Allure of a Great Romance...a Pair of Rose Colored Glasses...some Fine Wine, and a Subscription to Audible...
The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie: Highland Pleasures Book 1, by Jennifer Ashley and Narrated by Angela Dawe will leave you breathlessly wanting…
This book by Jennifer Ashley, was my first exposure to the author. I enthusiastically must say that before I finished book 1, I had already purchased the entire series, anxiously reading/listening to Angela Dawe’s masterful performance! I am currently in the second half of book 3, and loving it!
Jennifer Ashley has a wonderfully vivid imagination as is reflected throughout the Mackenzie Brother’s series. She artfully illustrates her characters and their environments so that the reader is magically transported into the book to observe each, as their stories unfold.
Each wild and somewhat mad Mackenzie brother is absolutely, and unconditionally devoted to his family, despite growing up with an abusive father. They are all large, and powerful of stature; each one uniquely gifted. They are proud Scotsmen, who live life with a hearty fervor. They are faithful, caring, attentive, and fiercely protective. While they share these traits, as the glue that binds them; they are vastly different in temperament and personality.
The women in their lives are strong, intelligent, and accomplished, making the journey delicious.
A must read for those who enjoy Historical Romance Novels.
I am quiet and love being comfortable. I love curling up in a corner either reading or listening to a nice romantic book.
Right up in the very top. I couldn't and didn't want to put this book down, I enjoyed it so much. It threw me to begin with but I gradually got into it. I was a bit surprised when it dawned on me that Ian is autistic and was very glad that Jennifer decided to write him this way. He was portrayed exactly as I imagined and very eccentric!
Because of Ian autistic portrayal, no other book. It is the first historical novel I have read that has been written this way. I was truly elated with the author for this.
All of it, she did a remarkable job, and kept me interested in the storyline.
Yes, when Beth explained that Ian remembering everything and being able to recall everything was weird at first but she actually came to love that about him. I was so proud of her for actually loving him for who he was and not what everyone was seeing him to be.
I can't wait to catch up on Ian and Beth in the other books in this series.
It's the hero that makes this story unique. Reading it, I could feel his pain. I also loved the relationship portrayed between the brothers.
Meet the woman that tamed the mad Lord Ian Mackenzie.
I was very, VERY disappointed with the narration of this wonderful and well written book. Ms.Dawe was not able to portray the most important character of this story which was Ian. His character came across too wooden, stoic, That is not what he was.Ms. Dawe's narration is too fast, too forced and I'm sorry to say, extremely annoying. Every sentence has a high pitched ending.
Frankly, I am surprised that a woman was chosen to narrate this story. If this story had been narrated by a male narrator, I believe it would have been much better. I would be willing to buy it again in that case.
I really enjoy the world of books! Narration just add layers to that world... don't u think? :)
Ian is so great. He is not mad but then again, he is completely mad!
I like how Beth could tell right away there was something interesting about him. I love the bluntness of Ian. The fact that he was so direct made him seem mad to everyone, but not to Beth, his Beth. Very cute story. The bed talk was just so cute and funny, but so erotic at the same time. Very good. Worth the credit.
The plot was typical Victorian romance. But the hero was fascinating. He was institutionalized most of his childhood, and today would have been labeled autistic. At the same time he was the classically good looking and brilliant hero. The heroine had a great sense of humor and chattered mindlessly whenever she was nervous. All of which was lost on the hero. Yet somehow they made the perfect couple. They made the book. Truly a joy to get to know. The narrator was OK. She handled the heroine well, but wasn't quite up to all the Scottish male characters.
Sometimes the appropriate response to reality is to go insane. Reviewer at BiblioSanctum.
Prior to listening to this book, I hadn't read a historical romance in quite some time. I think it's safe to say that it's probably been a few years. It's a little harder for me to get into historical romance than some other romance genres, but sometimes, I get the itch to read one. The Madness of Lord Ian MacKenzie introduces us to the MacKenzie clan, a group of Scottish brothers who are the scandal of London. In London, Ian meets and subsequently begins having an liaison with the widowed Beth Ackerley after warning her away from a dubious suitor. Surrounding their affair is a bit of mystery as an inspector begins hounding them due to the death of a woman with connections to the "mad" brother, Ian MacKenzie, who has spent some time in an asylum. Despite their status and wealth, the brothers grew up with an overbearing, abusive father. We get to dip into some of Ian's torment at the hands of his father and again at the asylum he was confined to and see how these events have shaped him as a person.
I liked both Beth and Ian. Beth was warm, funny, and assertive when she needed to be. I appreciated that she wasn't an 18-year-old virgin, but a woman who'd been with a man, enjoyed sex, and while she had decorum, she eschewed convention for happiness. Ian obviously had Asperger's, which would be seen as defiance and madness in 1881. Ashley was consistent in his actions. His "eccentricities" weren't just conveniences needed for certain scenes and then forgotten. The decision to write Ian on the autism spectrum is probably something you'll never see in a historical romance again. Be warned. This is a fairly steamy book. You're not going to find as much bawdy language in the descriptions as books that take place in modern erotica, but it manages to slip in a few laugh-worthy words and phrases that had me shaking my head a bit. This book doesn't overwhelm you with sex on every page, so it's easy enough to skip over if you don't enjoy reading explicit sex.
A couple of things I wanted to point out that hindered my reading experience a little. Beth flip-flopped between believing Ian's sincerity and questioning it at the strangest times, which was a little odd because she seemed to maintain that she believed him to be a man of his word. I guess she was supposed to be put-off some because Ian wouldn't meet her gaze or always pay attention to what she was saying (all due to his being on the autism spectrum), but Ian was straightforward about his intentions and never wavered in what he wanted from her. Also, even though there's a hint of mystery, this doesn't overtake the romance portion of the story. It's not supposed to, but what I mean is that, despite the fact that Ian stands accused of murder by an inspector, there's not really much official about the investigation. The accusations come from an investigator who has a personal vendetta against the family and uses his own time to "investigate" the matter.
Angela Dawe narrated this story, and this was the first time I've listened to anything by her. She did an admirable enough job even with a few production hiccups in the story, such as sometimes not changing her voice until she caught herself mid-dialogue for the male characters. Overall, I enjoyed the story for what it was, and of course, it ends with happily ever after because of course it does. I don't know if I want to continue reading more about the MacKenzie clan, but I think this has scratched my historical romance itch for a while. When the urge pops up again, I'll certainly consider these books to sate that need.
Just Another Audiobook Addict! Love listening to all types of romances, but occasionally need a good Sci-Fi, Fantasy, or a book with humor!
Historical romances are not my usual genre but I must say Jennifer Ashley did an amazing job on this story, and I really enjoyed it. There is plenty of hot romance, and a captivating mystery.
The hero, Ian, is not perfect and has "quirks" which makes him see and react to the word differently, This makes him socially awkward to others; however, his brothers love him and will do anything to protect Ian.
Ian saves Beth from marrying a man who would not be loyal, and decides he wants to be the one to marry Beth. He seduces her whenever they meet, slowing drawing her in. Beth is drawn to Ian; however, as things heat up, accusations come up indicating Ian has committed murder. Beth is determine to prove Ian and is brother are innocent.
I liked Angela Dawe performance, and thought she did a great job narrating this story.
I really enjoyed this story a lot, and look forward to listening to the other stories in the series.
Ian and Beth work. This is a romance that makes you feel the love. Two flawed people who find in each other exactly what the other needs to make life worthwhile. A simple premise to romance really, but in so many romances I have read in the past, I finished the book with the vague sense that the featured couple in the book just really didn't seem to belong together. That was not the case with this book. If there has ever been a couple who belonged together, it's Ian and Beth.
Beth is a product of an unfortunate union between a well bred girl and a French con artist. She's seen the seedier side of life. She spent 3 years in her late teens in the workhouse, but was saved by a kind young vicar and became his wife. There's was a happy marriage until he dies and leaves her a widow. She's then taken in as the companion of a grand and wealthy lady, who eventually dies and leaves Beth her fortune.
Being a new heiress, she ventures into different social circles and stumbles upon Lord Ian MacKenzie. Ian is the youngest of the MacKenzie brothers, and by todays standards, would have been labelled autistic. His father, a duke, had him committed to an asylum, but as soon as his father died, his eldest brother, now the duke, gets him released and brings him home. Ian has a phenomenal memory, and helps his brother in certain business and political tasks.
There is a wonderful love story. There is a neat (though a tad predictable) mystery. There is a good deal of humour. What's really special about this book though is the hero and Jennifer Ashley's portrayal of his autism. For the most part, she stays true to the stark truth of the disorder that afflicts Ian, and the effect it has on those around him. Still, she doesn't make him into a victim. Instead he's a strong, brilliant man who has to work within the limitations of the autism.
Never mind his disability, I reckon Ian is one of the sexiest heroes in literature. How the author made it happen, I'm not sure. It sort of snuck up on me. There is no doubt, however, before I was halfway through this book, I was head over heels for Ian, and I see by other reviews that I'm not alone in my adoration.
I have read several books by Jennifer Ashley, and this is the best one by a mile. Her characters are endearing without being too "sweet", her jokes were funny, and the action was paced perfectly.
Angela Dawe is a tried and true narrator, and I always have faith that she will deliver wonderful performance. She certainly didn't let me down here. I loved the way she softened Ian's voice. Her Scot's accent wasn't the best I've heard, but I found it credible. It certainly didn't make me cringe. I thought she delivered a solid performance.
I love Audible! Being a full time wife, mother, and career leaves no time to actually read. Audio books give me my fix anytime and anywhere.
More focus on the romance developing between Ian and Beth.
Better use of language for the era.
Slow down the narration.
I found there was way to much time wasted on less important subjects; from Mrs. Berrington's opinions finding its way into everything Beth does to antique ming bowls to solving the murder mystery sub-plot. A lot of thorough scenes have Beth galavanting off to distract herself in Ian's absence, but the author kind of just breezes over the times they were in each other's company but not in bed.
I could totally see why these two fall so madly in love, it is definitely clear, but I would have preferred to better know the details. We all read these novels KNOWING how it'll end, but we love the "what" that brings us to the predictable ending.
On the language...
I just don't feel this novel was a good example of a well researched period novel.
Using a lot of flowery words does not make it Victorian.
The flow just felt mimicked from better authors that are authorities on this time period.
She read way to fast and was much to matter of fact.Period.
Otherwise this was a really good book. All the other raving reviews can tell you why. I wrote this one because I always read reviews and I like to know the good + the bad. This is one just to warn futures listeners of this novels considerable flaws.
I feel that if you are interested in listening to a period romance with a serious twist and separates from the normal obstacles our hero and heroine must face in order to be with one another this particular novel definitely offers exactly what you have been searching for.
From beginning to end, the story is captivating; the theme different and truly unique. A mentally ill hero? Wow. To be honest, I usually do not like Angela Dawe's narration (Nalini Singh's novels)however, Angela did a great job. It was even a plus to find this book on sale.
If you like romance, I believe you'll truly believe like this book.
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