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The Secret: Highlands' Lairds, Book 1 | [Julie Garwood]

The Secret: Highlands' Lairds, Book 1

Judith Hampton was as beautiful as she was proud and loyal. Her dear Scottish friend from childhood was about to give birth, and Judith had promised to be at her side. But there was another reason for the journey from her bleak English home to the Highlands: to meet the father she had never known, the Laird Maclean. Nothing prepared her, however, for the sight of the Scottish barbarian who was to escort her into his land...Iain Maitland, laird of his clan, a man more powerfully compelling than any she had ever encountered.
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Publisher's Summary

New York Times best-selling author Julie Garwood captures the Highland splendor of medieval Scotland in this breathtaking love story. The inspiration for her acclaimed bestseller Ransom, this classic tale is a passionate masterpiece from one of the best-loved storytellers of all time.

Judith Hampton was as beautiful as she was proud and loyal. Her dear Scottish friend from childhood was about to give birth, and Judith had promised to be at her side. But there was another reason for the journey from her bleak English home to the Highlands: to meet the father she had never known, the Laird Maclean. Nothing prepared her, however, for the sight of the Scottish barbarian who was to escort her into his land...Iain Maitland, laird of his clan, a man more powerfully compelling than any she had ever encountered.

In a spirited clash of wills and customs, Judith reveled in the melting bliss of Iain's searching kisses, his passionate caresses. Perplexed by her sprightly defiance, bemused by her tender nature, Iain felt his soul growing into the light and warmth of her love. Surely nothing would wrench her from the affection and trust of Iain and his clan...not even the truth about her father, a devastating secret that could shatter the boldest alliance, and the most glorious of loves!

©2013 Julie Garwood (P)2013 Brilliance Audio, Inc.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (1452 )
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4.4 (1324 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Smooch CA 02-25-13
    Smooch CA 02-25-13 Member Since 2015

    Lost in a good book

    HELPFUL VOTES
    18
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    77
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    Story
    "Awesome story and great performance!"
    If you could sum up The Secret in three words, what would they be?

    Romantic, Sassy, Engaging.


    What did you like best about this story?

    I love a spirited woman and Judith was beautifully developed with a nice blend of compassion, spirit, and humility. I also enjoyed the humor in the story - many times I laughed out loud! I really loved all the charaters - Ian was strong but tender and so respectful.


    Have you listened to any of Susan Duerden’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    I haven't listened to her before but I totally enjoyed listening to her and definately look forward to listening to her again.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Definately made me laugh and when I had to put the book on pause, I couldn't wait until the time I could begin to listen again.


    Any additional comments?

    I really enjoyed this story - my first Julie Garwood book but won't be my last. She writes a great book. I loved the charaters, the romance was very sweet and perfectly (and respectfully) graphic. The narrator only added to the story making it very enjoyable - I didn't want it to end. I wish the next book was avaliable "Ransom" and read by the same narrator!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kindle Customer United States 02-23-13
    Kindle Customer United States 02-23-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
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    2
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    "Great narrator!"
    Would you consider the audio edition of The Secret to be better than the print version?

    The story was excellent. The narrator was terrific! I listened to another Julie Garwood book with a different narrator, and she did a terrible job on the men's voices. They sounded like croaking frogs not the sexy FBI men they were supposed to be. This narrator was wonderful. The men sounded like men. The accent was also good. I will make sure the narrator is a good one before I buy another book.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The plot was excellent. The characters were loveable and the story very funny.


    What does Susan Duerden bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    She did an excellent job. The accent was good and the men sounded like men.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Laugh, laugh, and more laughter!


    Any additional comments?

    Please give us good narrators. It makes all the difference when it is an audible book.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kristen MIDDLETOWN, RI, United States 02-13-13
    Kristen MIDDLETOWN, RI, United States 02-13-13 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
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    10
    5
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    "Great listen"

    This is book is one of my favorites. I am excited to be able to listen to it now!! I don't think I have listened to anything Susan Duerden has narrated and not enjoyed completely.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Barbara United States 02-07-13
    Barbara United States 02-07-13 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    26
    ratings
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    "Great Story & Romance in the Scottish Highlands"

    This story was excellent AND the narrator was also wonderful! (I am so glad I didn't let the poor reviews of this narrator dissuade me!!)
    An absorbing historical romance with charming characters -- I loved this book and did not want it to end!! So sad to see that Audible doesn't have Ransom - the next in the series (hint, hint!)
    The narrator does whisper and like another reviewer said the dialogue between Judith and Ian is outstanding -- pillow talk really and so seductive..... The whispers of the elders only added to the charm of these Scottish Warrior leaders.
    More please......

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer BOWMAN, SC, United States 02-02-13
    Amazon Customer BOWMAN, SC, United States 02-02-13 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
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    2
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    "I love this book!!!"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Not only would I recommend this book, I have to anyone who will listen. I love Iain and Judith. The story was touching with the strong warrior that has a gentle side for his lady


    What did you like best about this story?

    I liked everything about this book. I can't choose just one instance


    Which character – as performed by Susan Duerden – was your favorite?

    Iain and Judith


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    When Iain found Judith after she had been hurt


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Debbie 01-29-13
    Debbie 01-29-13 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
    6
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    "This is the best audible yet"

    I laughed out loud so enjoyed all the people that are involved
    I realy insiste you try this

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    erin new orleans, LA, United States 01-26-13
    erin new orleans, LA, United States 01-26-13 Member Since 2006
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "charming, sweet, funny- need more like it"
    What did you love best about The Secret?

    charming. love the time period. Sweet and funny without being sappy. I wish there were more books out there like this one.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    loved all the characters. I really hope the author decides to expand on this story line and develop all of these characters to their full potential.


    Which character – as performed by Susan Duerden – was your favorite?

    Great choice of narrator


    Any additional comments?

    Charming. Some truly memorable lines. Great dialogue. Can't wait for the next one.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kay 03-01-14
    Kay 03-01-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    84
    35
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    5
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    "The Highlands and Julie Garwood, equals...The Best"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Of course I would recommend it to anyone who is in historicals.
    Julie Garwood does this type of books real well. This is the first in a series, a series you must read.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Secret?

    When Iain decides to keep Judith and she's not quite sure what she's doing in front of the elders when he tries to get her to marry him...


    What does Susan Duerden bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    It's not what she brings to the story that's not in the book but more like another way of seeing things, with other views.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    There are quite a lot of them but at the end when Iain is ready to leave the clan with Judith is one.


    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Trish R. JACKSONVILLE, FL, United States 10-30-14
    Trish R. JACKSONVILLE, FL, United States 10-30-14 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great story..But.."
    Any additional comments?

    Great storyline and some laugh out loud moments. Judith was a perfect heroine, funny and smart, and Iain was a georgeous and wonderful hero. The book was not filled with so much angst it made you crazy. I absolutely hate angsty books.
    Love, love, loved the council members: Graham, Gelfrid, Owen, Duncan and Vincent. Loved Francis Catherine and Patrick. Loved Alex and Brodick. It was just a really great read and I'm going to read Ransom now.
    There was just the right amount of sex in the book, too.

    As to the narrator: Ms. Duerden has some awesome emotions she puts in her books. I loved her laughing and crying and yelling but I especially loved that everytime the book called for a whisper, which was a lot, she whispered. It was perfect.
    The only thing I didn't like was that EVERY man had a very raspy voice, like a 2 pack-a-day smoker, and there were a lot of men. I can honestly say that I didn't like the voice of any man in this book but because she read it with so much emotion I was able to overlook that.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tracy T Jacksonville, FL USA 10-16-14
    Tracy T Jacksonville, FL USA 10-16-14 Member Since 2014

    Audible Addict!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    517
    ratings
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    360
    315
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    68
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    Overall
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    Story
    "Wonderful Story!"

    Wow that was a fantastic story. The hero, Iain was big, hunky, and awesome. The heroine, Judith, was beautiful, funny, witty and smart. Loved these two together. Fantastic chemistry and dialogue. Nicely written sex scenes between them too. So if you are wondering there is sex in the book.

    Dialogue was great throughout the entire book and there is plenty of it. (I like lot's of dialogue in my books) The story line and plot were great. I really liked all the secondary characters as well.

    As for the narration. there were some positive and some negative. Positive is Susan Duerdan did the heroine's voice very well, I also like the emotion she uses when it's required, ie, whispering, yelling, mumbling etc., I liked the hero's voice he sounded strong, manly and sexy.

    Negative on the narration is that some of the secondary male character highlander's voices were so awfully high pitched and obnoxiously screechy it was brutal.

    Also, the reading voice she uses is so sing song, she draws out those consonants at the end of the sentences. So for example "She made it home" would be read like "She made it Hommmmmmmme" it's very annoying. When she is reading dialogue she does not do this she ends the word properly and does not drawwwwwwwwww it out. She is not my favorite narrator but she is better than some, ie Anne Fosnik, sorry but AF ruins and destroys books.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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