Moonlight Raider is a Scottish romance set in the 16th century and is part of Amanda Scott’s Border Nights series. Runaway Brides walked the earth long before Julia Roberts, and Molly is one of them.
Walter Scott or Wat has just buried his father and inherited the title Lord of Rankilburn. He is walking through the forest for some peace and quiet when he comes across a distressed maiden. His neighbors, known marauders, claim they are looking for a missing servant but he turns them away. He takes the girl home with him and offers shelter, little knowing the complications to come.
Molly Cockburn is his grandmother’s godchild, one who she has never seen. Molly is forced into marriage and flees her husband on the wedding night. Her marriage is invalid per Scottish law because she did not consent to it. But will Walter bear the wrath of her clan just to protect her? Walter seeks out the Abbot to find out what the law and church say. Meanwhile, Walter’s sisters and grandmother have taken to Molly, and they will not let her go at any price.
Amidst all the chaos, Walter’s great aunt arrives. And he has been entrusted with an important mission by the king. Will Walter be able to stay home and guard his family, will he sacrifice the lives of his people for Molly, or will he go on the King’s mission? Tough choices indeed.
I expected a lot from a top author, but the story fell slightly flat. Maybe I was just not in the mood to read this genre. History buffs will love the parallel story lines that talk about relations between Scotland and England. There is some humor in the book and Molly is painted as a strong character, although she has lived a sad life.