What is it about a man in a kilt? Put two book covers side by side, one with a kilted Highlander and the other with a James Bond type in a tux, and my eyes stray to the Highlander every time. And then there’s utilikilts, the canvas garment with a zillion pockets—even a beer pocket. Very few men wear them, but they all seem to exude a certain confidence, and “I don’t care what you think” attitude. In talking with friends, it seems that kilts are damned attractive and alluring—so why don’t more men wear them?
My latest release, Duet, features a Highlander in a kilt, though not the short version most often seen today, but the great kilt, which also doubled as a cloak, bedding or whatever else was needed. After the battle of Culloden in 1746, the English outlawed the wearing of kilt, the playing of bagpipes, and the speaking of Gaelic. Duet’s hero is Aillil Callaghan, older son and heir to a Highland laird. Despite the English decree, he continues to practice the customs he learned from his grandfather, and vows to one day restore the clan to its former glory.
And, oh yes! Love interest Malcolm does enjoy easy access to all the dangly bits.
Enjoy of bit of kilt-based music with “Come Under My Plaidie.”
Here’s the blurb:
A conqueror’s decree can’t separate Aillil Callaghan from his Scottish heritage. He wears his clan’s forbidden plaid with pride, awaiting the day he becomes Laird, restores his family’s name, and fights to free Scotland from English tyranny. An Englishman in his home? Abomination! Yet the tutor his father engaged for Aillil’s younger brothers may have something to teach the Callaghan heir as well.
Violinist and scholar Malcolm Byerly fled Kent in fear, seeking nothing more than a quiet post, eager minds to teach, and for no one to learn his secrets. He didn’t count on his charges’ English-hating barbarian of an older brother, or on red-and-green tartan concealing a kindred soul. A shared love of music breaks down the barriers between two worlds.
Aillil’s father threatens their love, but a far more dangerous enemy tears them apart. They vanish into legend.
Two centuries later, concert violinist Billy Byerly arrives at Castle Callaghan—and feels strangely at home. Legends speak of a Lost Laird who haunts the fortress in wait of his lover’s return. Billy doesn’t believe in legends, ghosts, or love that outlasts life.
But the Lost Laird knows his own.
Look for Duet to publish from Dreamspinner Press on February 18. Leave a comment on the post to get your name in the drawing for an ebook copy.
Eden Winters, ever curious about new places and people, lives a somewhat nomadic existence. Her earliest memories include making up stories for the family’s pets, and through her academic years she spent many happy hours writing short stories and poems. Dreams of writing professionally were realized, only not as planned, with a good dozen years spent as a technical documenter. From a young age she eagerly devoured every book that caught her eye, from biographies to sci-fi. Genre? What genre?
When she discovered m/m, she met characters she could identify with and scintillating plotlines that kept her riveted to the page. Somewhere around the 300th book her own imagination began making demands. From her fascination with, well, everything sprang stories as diverse as a 1700’s Highlander to a modern doctor in earthquake-devastated El Salvador.
Her first novel was published in 2010, and she’s never looked back. To date, five of her novels have been recognized by the annual Rainbow Awards, with one also gaining finalist status in the 2012 Lambda Literary Awards.
Currently, Eden calls the southern US home, and many of her stories take place in the rural South. She lives alone, having successfully raised two children, and divides her time between a day job, friends, grandkids, writing, trying different varieties of vegetarian cuisine, and exploring her world. Her musical tastes run from Ambient to Zydeco, she owns a TV she never watches, and she’s a firm believer that life is better with pets. She also loves cruising down the road on the back of a Harley Davidson.
Thank you, Pam, for allowing me to visit your site today, and more importantly, for giving me the push I needed to write in the first place. Hugs.