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Highland Weddings #2

The Groom Wore Plaid

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Falling in love means tempting fate in this passionate new novel in USA Today bestselling author Gayle Callen's Highland Weddings series.

Maggie McCallum's dreams about her new fiancé aren't the romantic sort. It's not just that she was bartered to Owen Duff like a piece of property to end a clan feud. She's also haunted by premonitions of his death on their upcoming wedding day. Yet the exasperating Highlander won't let her call it off, even though his life and his clan are both in jeopardy.

Owen has wanted Maggie in his bed since he first glimpsed her years ago. If their union restores peace between their clans, so much the better. But while lusting after another chief's sister had its risks, growing to trust Maggie is far more dangerous. Owen is falling deeply in love with the one woman he cannot hope to claim . . . and survive.

377 pages, Mass Market Paperback

First published February 23, 2016

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About the author

Gayle Callen

55 books489 followers
USA Today Bestselling author Gayle Callen writes historical romances for Avon Books. Her twenty-second novel, The Wrong Bride, was published in November 2015.

Gayle’s novels have won the Holt Medallion, the Laurel Wreath Award, the Booksellers’ Best Award, and finaled in the National Readers Choice Awards. She was a nominee for RT Book Reviews Magazine’s Reviewers’ Choice Award. Her books have been translated into eleven different languages. She also writes the contemporary romances as Emma Cane.

Gayle resides in central New York with her husband. Now that her three children are grown, she has time to read, sing, and delve too deeply into historical research. A past President of the Central New York Romance Writers, she is also a member of Romance Writers of America and Novelists Inc. Visit her website at http://www.gaylecallen.com

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 81 reviews
Profile Image for UniquelyMoi ~ BlithelyBookish.
1,166 reviews1,634 followers
February 29, 2016
Completed (and short) review now posted...

This is the 2nd installment in Gayle Callen’s Highland Weddings series. Like the 1st book, The Wrong Bride, The Groom Wore Plaid is a fun story. The witty banter between Maggie and Owen made me chuckle more than a few times. Their passion - though it didn’t happen until later in the story, made this a steamy read! There’s also a mystery, a little poignancy, and overall The Groom Wore Plaid is an entertaining tale and a great addition to the series.

There are definitely characters I’d like to know more about, and I’m looking forward to what Ms. Callen offers up next in the series.

An ARC was provided by Avon Books. In appreciation I’m giving them an honest review.
Profile Image for Mary - Buried Under Romance .
369 reviews162 followers
July 26, 2016
Be warned - you might want to tear your hair out

I will forgo the plot that the other reviewers have covered, and talk of a glaring weakness in this book. While I generally like Gayle Callen's writing, she may have a problem with writing stories involving misconceptions and always have the hero stubbornly refuse to believe anything the heroine says - even if the evidence is right in front of his eyes! - as a plot device for character conflict due to the lack of a better one. Well, all that did to me is making me want to smack and kick the hero for being an idiot, for trying to seduce the heroine even though he thinks she is mentally illc(because, hey, passion over sense, right? ) and what do you get in the end? The heroine was right all along and the hero is proven to be an idiot. Again.

I cannot see the appeal of such a weak conflict nor a hero who does not think. Frankly, I foresee problems with such a marriage going forward because a relationship without trust is just like a crumbling pile of rocks.
Profile Image for Zoe.
762 reviews181 followers
March 13, 2016
My review for the first book in the series can be recycled for this book too because my feelings toward the 2nd installment are exactly the same: characters are just playacting, the emotions seem false, the plots seem contrived. But I wanted to read on. God knows why. The plots of this book are very similar to those of the first book in the sense that the man and the woman act very similarly and say things to the same effect. Guy wanted to convince the woman to marry him. The woman did not want to marry him and did a lot of stupid things in her power to convince him that she was not the right person. Then they had sex before the upcoming marriage, and both women in both books bursted into tears after they had sex. (seriously, I laughed.)

My feelings about these 2 books are obviously not positive. But I must confess: I wanted to continue reading. This is the most bizarre feeling. I did not like the stories and thought them kind of boring and pretentious, but I did not want to stop reading either. Hence the 3 stars.

Incidentally, the covers are so pretty. I have said this before, but avon knows how to make a cover. The buying decision was made a lot easier because of the cover. Alas the cover is the best thing about the book, in both books of the series.
Profile Image for Lover of Romance.
2,985 reviews866 followers
February 2, 2023

This review may contain spoilers, so fair warning, upon reading the review.

The Groom Wore Plaid is the second book in the "Highland Weddings" and I was intrigued to pick this author up as its been a long while since I have read this author but I have to say I ADORED this one so completely. It has been so long since I had read this author that I had forgotten how charming and delightful her writing is. There was such top notch banter between our main protagonists and it was just plain good fun to see them interact. We have some interesting tropes that come together in this one as well as a unique time era that we normally don't see in recently published historical romance as this is mid 1700's Scotland. I just loved the way that discussed Jacobite rebellion and the fight for Scotland's independence from England.

The Main Protagonists
The Hero: Owen Duff
-Highland Laird
-Capable Leader

The Heroine: Maggie McCallum
-Has dreams/visions of events in the future
-betrothed to Owen
-Family is enemy to the Duff's

Maggie and Owen were once friends when they were younger and there was a young love that was building between them, but Owen was engaged to marry, but when Maggie has a vision of his fiancee dying, he didn't believe her and she ended up dead. Now its been more than a decade later, and to bring peace to their families and clan, they honor the agreement that was originally made between their families. Owen is determined to make this work, but when Maggie has a dream of Owen being mortally injured on their wedding day, she is determined to make sure that this doesn't come true. But as Maggie and Owen's wills clash, so does the love they feel for each other, but who will win in the end?

My Outlook
The Groom Wore Plaid was such a delightful story and I honestly had such love for this one. It was such a delight to read and I absolutely enjoyed every single moment of this one here. It was so enjoyable to read. And seeing the way that the author implemented the humor was such so much fun to read. There is something in the writing style of Gayle Callen that is just so endearing and addictive. From the first chapter, you are immediately swept up in the story and in the romance. The way that these two banter was so fun. Seeing the way that Owen and Maggie compete with each other was intriguing, you can see as the story builds, how much they are attracted to each other and how their feelings for each other are growing.

Gayle Callen really implemented some unique elements to the story line that added some edge to it. We do have a villain here, which might be predictable. I saw it coming a bit, but I don't think its obvious so it might surprise you in the end. I did feel like the ending was a bit anticlimatic though. But I enjoyed seeing how the dream of Maggie get resolved in the end and the turnout of the ending really satisfied the story overall. There is some angst between the families and I felt like that was well played out. I do think fans of highlander romances, will become endeared to this one.

Overall View
I found The Groom Wore Plaid to be such a talented and tasteful romance that implements elements of danger, intrigue and passion well balanced all the way throughout and leaves the reader fully satisfied!

Rating Evaluation:
Plot: 4.5
World Building: 4
Cover: 5
Hero: 4
Heroine: 4
Steam: 4
Heart & Feels: 4
Overall View: 4

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Profile Image for Vikki Vaught.
Author 11 books158 followers
March 4, 2016
Vikki’s Musings

It has been quite some time since I have read a book by Gayle Callen, but I am certainly pleased I had the opportunity to read The Groom Wore Plaid in exchange for an honest review. Now I remember why I love her books!

The Groom Wore Plaid is an emotionally-charged romance with engaging characters and an intriguing plot. The pacing is excellent and made it an easy and quick read. The prologue pulled me in, and it smoothly transitioned to the first chapter, which is ten years after the couple first met.

Margaret McCallum is the sacrificial lamb. By marrying Owen Duff, the Earl of Aberfoyle, it will end the long feud between their clans. There is a problem. Maggie has dreams that foretell the future. She has had a dream showing Owen dying in her arms on their wedding day. How can she place him in harm’s way by marrying him?

Owen Duff remembers Maggie and the desire he felt for her. He wronged her ten years ago and she has not forgiven him, even though she has agreed to the contract between the clans. His desire for Maggie has not lessened. In fact, it is stronger than ever. Although, he has to overcome his future bride’s determination to find another way to fulfill the contract. Can Owen convince Maggie to marry him, or will her desire to protect him from his possible death prove too strong to circumvent?

I truly enjoyed Maggie’s character. She is sincere, loyal to her family and determined to protect the man she has always desired, even though he wronged her in the past. She has good depth to her character, and I was able to figure out what made her so afraid to form friendships. I could feel her terror over putting Owen in a situation that could mean his death.

Owen Duff’s character has every reason to avoid attachments. He also has a lot to prove to his clan. His father was an uncaring chief, milking the clan and ruling from a distance. He was more concerned about his ties to England and spent most of his time there. I loved Owen’s determination to prove he will be a good chief for the clan. Even though he has trust issues, he truly wants Maggie to become his bride. It just takes almost losing her for him to realize the depth of his feelings for her.

The Groom Wore Plaid is very well-written, and Ms. Callen does an excellent job with the suspenseful scenes. My only problem with this story is the lack of a strong sense of Scotland. Her dialogue did not give me what I love about a Scottish tale. Other than the use of ye and lass, it could have been set in England. However, I did enjoy the romance between the hero and heroine a great deal.

If you enjoy a moving story with a bit of suspense and great characters, then you will enjoy The Groom Wore Plaid. I understand this is part of a series so I want to read the other books in this series. Now that I recall why I enjoy Ms. Callen’s books, I will be looking for others by her. Happy reading!
Profile Image for Caz.
2,759 reviews1,034 followers
September 17, 2016
I've given this a C+ at AAR, so 3.5 stars

The Groom Wore Plaid is the sequel to Gayle Callen's The Wrong Bride, and the story in this book picks up more or less where the first ended, with Maggie McCallum agreeing to wed Owen Duff, the new Earl of Aberfoyle, in order to satisfy a long-standing agreement between their two clans. Because Maggie’s brother Hugh had indeed fallen in love with the wrong bride – Owen’s cousin rather than his sister – there was no other way to secure a lasting peace between the two families – but now, Maggie is wondering whether her hasty agreement to Owen’s suggestion was the right one.

Even though they had met briefly as children, it wasn’t until a chance meeting in Edinburgh some ten years before this story commences that Owen and Maggie became friends. Owen’s enthusiasm for scientific pursuits thoroughly intrigued Maggie who, as a woman, was denied the opportunity to learn anything other than deportment and embroidery. She took delight in the companionship of someone who treated her as an equal and didn’t think her curiosity inappropriate or unladylike, even as she recognised that there was more to her feelings for Owen than friendship. Their idyll ended abruptly, however, when the strength of the attraction between them almost overwhelmed their common sense, and Owen had to tell Maggie he had been betrothed as a child to a young woman chosen by his father. Deeply upset at Owen’s duplicity, Maggie vowed never to see him again, but later that very night, she had a vivid dream showing his fiancée surrounded by water, a vision Maggie knew foretold the young woman’s death by drowning.

Growing up, Maggie learned to be very cautious about telling others of her ‘gift’, fearing accusations of witchcraft (at worst) or social ostracism, but she knew she would not be able to live with herself if she did nothing to try to save the life of Owen’s betrothed. She went to see him once more to tell him of her dream, but Owen dismissed her fears as ridiculous, putting them down to jealousy and anger.

Two weeks after Maggie’s warning, the girl and her family were drowned.

A decade later, Maggie is still resentful of Owen’s treatment of her, both in not telling her he was engaged and in so casually dismissing her dream as nonsense. Over the years, she has trained herself to prevent having dreams that foretell the future, forcing herself to wake up before they take hold; but on her first night at Castle Kinlochard, she dreams of Owen lying in a pool of blood on their wedding day. Terrified at the thought of losing him, she begs him to release her from the betrothal , but his reaction is as dismissive as before and he remains committed to their contract. Going back on his word will risk the already uneasy peace between the Duffs and the McCallums and Owen is not prepared to do that. He is already regarded with suspicion by his own clan because of his father’s insistence on living in London in the style of an English earl and knows he has a lot of prejudice to overcome before the clan accepts him fully as their chief. Taking a bride from a rival family is an ages old solution to enmity, and even though Owen is annoyed at having had his choices in that regard taken away from him, he can’t find it in him to be too dissatisfied with his bargain. Maggie is beautiful, intelligent and spirited and he wants her as much as he ever did. Maggie feels a similar pull towards Owen, but his refusal to take her dream seriously only tells her that he still doesn’t trust her and that he never will.

Like Owen, Maggie also has to struggle against the prejudice she encounters at the castle, and there are many who do not forgive and forget and are not at all happy at the presence of a McCallum in their midst. A series of supposed “accidents” – burned out barns, stolen cattle – seem to be the work of a disgruntled clan member, but when Maggie finds a symbol of evil intent in her bedchamber, it seems there might be more at work than a simple grudge.

Maggie is an estimable heroine for the way she is so focused on saving Owen at the cost of her own happiness, but I disliked her bitterness. She keeps harping on to herself about how he doesn’t trust her because he hadn’t believed her dream from a decade ago, yet I had to wonder how she could have expected a different reaction from a man whose interest lay in science. I also found it a bit odd that she was still angry at him for not telling her he was engaged back then. I can understand her being upset at the time, but hanging on to it for ten years – and ten years after the woman died– seemed a bit much.

Owen’s distrust of Maggie is also a little overdone at the beginning, but I could forgive him to an extent because he has so much to do and learn and is a man beset on all sides. He must take a wife not of his choosing, confront the suspicions of his clan on both his account and Maggie’s, prove himself worthy of respect and able to lead … it’s a difficult balancing act, and it quickly becomes clear that he is prepared to work hard to claim his Scottish heritage and that it is important to him. I admired that about him, and soon found myself getting impatient on his behalf at all Maggie’s silly stratagems to try to get him to cry off, like trying to make herself look fat, or making him shirts that didn’t fit properly.

There’s a nice touch – or ridiculous co-incidence, depending how you want to look at it – when Maggie realises that she and Owen have always been bound to each other, and while the chemistry between the couple isn’t going to strip paint off the walls, it simmers along nicely as Maggie and Owen help and support each other and rediscover something of their old friendship.

Ultimately, The Groom Wore Plaid is an easy, undemanding read and the protagonists are attractive, though not compelling, characters. That, actually, is an apt description of the book – attractive but not compelling. I didn’t have strong feelings about it either way after I finished it; it’s a book I read and liked well enough, but not one I’m likely to revisit.
Profile Image for Angelc.
422 reviews51 followers
February 23, 2016
Books like this are why I love historical romance novels. I lost myself for an entire morning reading this book as quickly as possible. The story and the writing flowed along so nicely, the pages just kept turning almost of their own accord. I've read romances were the actual romance between the leads might have been stronger or more star crossed, but I loved the way this book had balance. The supporting characters and side mystery really drew me in as much as the romance story.

The romance was much more of a slow burn between the hero and heroine but it was quite believable that way considering the circumstances. Maggie and Owen had met and actually had a bit of a romance when they were teenagers. But Own was betrothed to another woman, and dismissed Maggie's visions of the death of his bride as a jealous ploy for his attention. Flash forward ten years, and Maggie's vision had come true, and the couple finds themselves betrothed as part of a contract between their two families.

Maggie has a vision of Owen dying this time, and she devises ways to keep him at arms' length and even make him think she is an unsuitable bride. Of course, he wants to marry her anyway and it's so cute to see him immune to all of her plots to make herself both unattractive and disagreeable.

The leads are strong, Owen is so serious and tries to make himself unaffected by any emotions. He comes along nicely though, and his attraction and affection for Maggie is always apparent. Maggie is somewhat funny in her attempts to keep Owen away. It does become just a bit tiresome to hear her always referring to her dream of his death, but it shows how seriously she takes her visions.

The supporting characters are so much fun and keep the story lighthearted. Kathleen, Maggie's maid is so sweet and genuine. Cat, Owen's sister, is refreshing in that she is always on Maggie's side even though their family's don't get along.

Gayle Callen hits it out of the park with this historical romance. There is a little something for everyone and the romance, the storyline, and the characters all tie together for a seamless, page-turning read.

book received from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

reviewed for http://inthehammockblog.blogspot.com

Profile Image for Barbara Rogers.
1,556 reviews160 followers
January 30, 2016
** I received an ARC of this book in return for my honest review**

I really, really enjoyed this book. It has strong well-developed characters and a solid flowing story line. It has rotten fathers, love, a smidgen of mysticism, bad guys, family loyalty – everything you could want in a book.

Our hero, Owen Duff, is both a Scottish Laird and an English Earl. His father wasn’t a very good guy and valued his English title more than his Scottish people and lands. Owen was only interested in scholarly endeavors and he puts a great value on education and intellect.

Our heroine, Maggie McCallum, is the daughter of a Scottish Laird. Maggie has dream that foretell the future – not often, but they are always right when she has them. Her father is much worse than Owen’s. He is a drunkard and he abuses his young female clan members.

Owen and Maggie meet when they are teenagers and spend a couple of wonderful weeks together when their families are in Edinburgh to introduce Owen’s sister and Maggie’s brother because they have been betrothed since birth. The betrothal is to end a centuries long clan feud.

Owen and Maggie part when she discovers that Owen is betrothed himself. She also dreams that his betrothed will drown and tries to warn him, but he ridicules her for believing in something as un-scientific as dreams.

Ten years later, after both fathers are deceased, her brother goes to kidnap his bride, but gets the wrong girl (ever hear that one before). He falls in love with her and they marry, but that leaves the clans still feuding. Owen offers to marry Maggie in order to fulfill the contract.

Maggie agrees – until she has a dream that Owen will die on their wedding day. She starts looking for ways out of the bargain, but Owen won’t let her out and is amused by the many ways she tries to manage to get out. She’s told him why she can’t marry him – she doesn’t want him to die. He, of course, doesn’t believe in the portent of her dream.

I’ve not told you any spoilers – just know that their way to a happily ever after is filled with villains and potholes. It is a great book and I think you’ll really enjoy it.
Profile Image for Mariana.
691 reviews75 followers
July 23, 2016
I enjoyed this one more than the first book (and only other I have read by this author). It has the exact same honest heroine and hero who refuses to believe and trust her, the same tears after sex; but I liked reading the story. Gayle Callen comes up with good premises and pushes through the plot with a bit of mediocre passion thrown in, but it is an easy read.
Profile Image for Tonya Henderson.
716 reviews132 followers
April 6, 2016
I have been in need of a historical romance fix for quite some time and I am beyond happy The Groom Wore Plaid was the one to sate it.

The Groom Wore Plaid is the second book in the Highland Weddings series, but can be read as a stand alone. The story focuses on Maggie and Owen, two people from rival clans arranged to be married to bring peace to the clans. It's sweet, hilarious, engaging and fun, quick read!

I adored Maggie! She is strong, witty and very independent. She has the spunk I like in my heroines, and I laughed at loud at her quips! Her history with Owen, and his brazen indifference to her dreams which tell the future, has put a lasting mark on her - so I understood her anger and grudge that she kept. She desires him and wants to be with him, even though she feels as if the feelings are reciprocated. But there's more. The night of her arrival to his castle, she dreams of Owen's death on their wedding night. Of course, Owen doesn't believe it which sets Maggie on a mission to find another way for them fulfill the contract.

Owen was an easy male hero to like. He feels like he has a lot to prove to his clan, and often participates in events and mingles with them to earn their trust. Especially after bringing a McCallum into the mix. His desire for Maggie is just as strong has her desire for him, but he fears attachments. He doesn't want to love her, and often tells himself that throughout but it's just as apparent to us that he does. His conflicted thoughts on whether to believe Maggie often drove ME mad, simply because she had no reason to lie.

In addition to their hot sexual tension and slow burning romance, there is the added suspense on who is trying to sabotage the peace bargain by fires on the land and tormenting Maggie. It was woven beautifully into the story and the mystery of it was well done. I couldn't figure out WHO would want to do such things, but in the end it all made sense!

To sum up - I loved The Groom Wore Plaid! This is my first Gayle Callen book but definitely will not be my last. If you are looking for well written, entertaining and fun historical romance, I highly recommend it!

I received this book for free from The Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Profile Image for Melody  May (What I'm Reading).
1,485 reviews23 followers
March 11, 2016
Posted on What I'm Reading

Okay, I liked The Wrong Bride it was a good read, but I feel The Groom Wore Plaid was so much better. At the end of The Wrong Bride Maggie basically offers herself to Owen in order to ensure peace between the two clans. Basically, she's offering herself as the sacrificial lamb, and she's okay with the decision until she has a dream about Owen's death on their wedding day. After the dream she tries to tell Owen they can't get marry, but Owen isn't going to hear a word.

Now Owen and Maggie have a bit of history. They actually hung out together, then one day Maggie has a dream about Owen's fiancée, and he accuses her of being jealous. He mocks her gift, and she holds a little resentment. Owen has a firm belief in logic and science, so he's a bit skeptical about Maggie's gift. Of course this cause a bit of tension between the two.

Anyway, I did enjoy The Groom Wore Plaid. I liked Maggie and her loyalty to whom she cares for. She truly tries to protect Owen for his own good. Stubborn man. Maggie's character broke my heart at times, because she always felt her gift as a curse. It being 1700s, I would feel the same way, being call a witch back then is a scary thing. She never felt like she could belong anywhere or be normal. Then to have your betrothal mocking you, because he doesn't understand. Owen can be stubborn and wants what he wants. Plus, he's a man of science and logic. Maggie and him buttheads quite a bit. Yes, the you are going to marry me, and no I'm not does get a little old at times. As the wedding draws closer things start to happen that makes Maggie worry, and it does make the story move a little faster.

Like I said, I did like The Groom Wore Plaid. I think, because I could empathize with Maggie on being an outsider trying to fit the mold of everyone else. I did like how Gayle manage to make the McCallum-Duff feud pop up. Things happen the Duff look at Maggie like she had something to do with the mishaps. Poor girl, being a scapegoat. Anyway, there is a bit a danger lurking before the wedding. Overall, an enjoyable read.

Copy provided by Avon via Edelweiss
Profile Image for Izzie d.
4,096 reviews288 followers
July 20, 2017
Maggie and Owen. We were introduced to these 2 in book 1 of the series and this book continues their story. They plan to marry to fulfill the contract but there was a hint that they have met previously and have sort sort of history together.
It is a good story, she has dreams of future events and he is a scientist so has no time for fantasy. An interesting twist to a week travelled story-line.
104 reviews
March 28, 2023
Great book! Super fun read!! Only problem is that the plot was super similar to the previous in that the main female character is saying something and the male protagonist doesn't believe her. So like repetitive but I'm not complaining that much. I like my books dependable and consistent 😂😂😂😂
Profile Image for Ouadi Imane.
548 reviews119 followers
July 31, 2017
Accurate rating is 3.5 , I enjoyed this installement less then the previous one , mainly because of the characters especially the female MC Maggie , their back and forth was tolerable at best and horrendous at worst , at first it was quite understandable and even somewhat enjoyable , but at the very last it was just arguing TO ARGUE which grew rapidly annoying , Owen was okaay , quite the logical and scientific fella , which is surprisingly not my thing in books , I love them passionate , emotional and hot blooded more then tending towards sense and rationality. Last thing , I do not know what to make of Maggie's talent/curse , it was weird to have a supernatural element thrown in a rather extremely normal historical romance , mayhep it was the only thing to link both of the characters together but still it could've been done without , so I don't know what to make of it.
Will probably take me sometime to read the 3rd and final book in this trilogy , I believe it's about Cat , the remaining single sibling in this series.
Profile Image for Sandi aka Maudley.
880 reviews17 followers
May 12, 2020
Inventive continuation of the series with enough reminders of the beginning to fill in any blanks for anyone who did not read the first book. Maggie and Owen are a very well-matched pair.
Profile Image for Bambi Unbridled.
1,283 reviews139 followers
March 9, 2016
I messed up on this book and it's totally my fault. I meant to read The Wrong Bride before I got around to The Groom Wore Plaid... but I totally forgot and then I was crunched for time and couldn't fit it into my schedule. I urge everyone to read the books in the correct order b/c this 2nd installment of the Highland Weddings series is a sequel to the first book. There were many references to things you would probably know if you did things properly... unlike my sorry self. I was kicking myself as I read, believe me.

Our H/h in this story are members of feuding clans who have decided to marry to end the conflict between their people. This peace-keeping marriage was supposed to happen with different clan members, namely Hugh McCallum and Catriona Duff. However, if/when you read that first book, you will know things went awry, and now Maggie and Owen are on the hook to carry out the marriage contract.

Maggie McCallum has always held herself apart from others, afraid of being labeled a witch if people were to learn of her prophetic dreams. People already make signs to ward off evil when they see her two different colored eyes. Maggie starts having second thoughts about the impending marriage after she has a dream about Owen's death, and she starts trying to push Owen away in the silliest ways. I felt sorry for Maggie being seen as an enemy in her future home, but she held her head high and persevered.

Owen Duff is not the typical highland hero; he does not come off as an alpha male warrior. Instead, Owen's interests have always been more focused on scientific pursuits. He likes astronomy, inventions and modern conveniences of the time. His father hid him away in London during the 1715 Rising, so now that he is back he feels he must prove himself as a worthy chieftain to his people. While Owen is reacquainting himself with Highland customs such as swimming the loch, wrestling and target shooting, he is also trying to woo a reluctant Maggie.

The courtship between Maggie and Owen was contemptuous. Owen doesn't believe that Maggie is a seer, and Maggie is determined to find a way out of the marriage contract. Owen is kissing and Maggie is sniping. So there was lots and lots of drama. While I liked each of the characters individually, the disdain between them was sometimes grating. Once Maggie cools her jets and decides to stop working against Owen, things were much better.

The plot to stop the marriage was interesting and laid out well. I had my suspicions about the culprit, but it wasn't glaringly obvious so I enjoyed unraveling the mystery as I read. I would have liked to see the motive explored a little more because it seemed to be a tad glossed over.

Overall, this was an enjoyable story with a good amount of steam for a historical. I think I would have been more engaged had I not forgot to read the first book. I received an advanced copy of this book from Avon via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. 3.5 stars / 3 flames.
Profile Image for Carra.
1,694 reviews26 followers
March 10, 2016
If you're looking for a classic historical Highlands romance, you'll find it here in The Groom Wore Plaid. There's plenty of angst, tension of all kinds, mystery, suspense...and of course romance--although Maggie tries to avoid that at all costs since her visions of future events tell her that her betrothed, Owen, will have his life in danger.

Now, I will admit that for most of the story I wasn't really feeling any connection between Owen and Maggie. Between his disbelief of her visions and her distrust of him over his disbelief, it made it hard for me to get any kind of emotional connection between them. It does become much more evident later in the story, but until then it was a bit frustrating for me since I really couldn't sense a true link between them.

But the wonderful writing and the storyline that keeps you guessing as to the true villain behind everything kept my attention smack in the middle of the story the whole way through. All of the characters were very well written and had great depth, contributing to this well-rounded story.

If you're a historical Highlands romance fan, this will be right up your alley. I personally would recommend reading the first book of the series, The Wrong Bride, before starting The Groom Wore Plaid as I definitely think it will enhance the enjoyment of the book. A main plot point of The Wrong Bride continues here in The Groom Wore Plaid, and characters from the first book appear here as well, so knowing the story behind it all is a big plus.

This was a 4-star read for me, and I'd recommend it for fans of the genre 18+ due to some scenes with adult sexual content.
Profile Image for Tracy Emro.
1,834 reviews48 followers
March 27, 2016
4 stars

This book picks up where the last book ended.

Maggie and Owen have agreed to marry to satisfy the terms of the contract that Hugh inadvertently violated by kidnapping the wrong woman.

At first Maggie is OK with marrying Owen - she is not thrilled because they share a past and she doesn't exactly trust him and he hurt her when he scoffed at her gift and accused her of lying because she was jealous. But since her marrying Owen is the only way her brother can marry the woman he loves and to keep peace in the clans.

She arrives at Owen's home and that night she has a dream that he dies on their wedding day. Desperate to save him, she tells him of her dream and again he doesn't believe her. Maggie takes matters in her own hands and tries to get Owen to call off the wedding. But her efforts are in vain, Owen thwarts her at every turn.

Apparently Maggie is not the only one who doesn't want this marriage to take place - an unknown villain begins to wreak havoc within the clan and then escalates the attacks to the point Maggie's very life is in danger.

Maggie finally accepts that she will marry Owen and hopes that her dream doesn't play out. The book ends in a whirlwind of drama and true love conquering all.

I liked the book - it isn't quite as good as Ms. Callen's older works - but it is well written and entertaining. I would have no problem recommending this story.
Profile Image for Aemelia.
105 reviews5 followers
March 11, 2016
This book was a DNF for me. I tried hard to get into the story, I even went as far as putting the book down and coming back a week later to try again. Mainly, I didn't like the flow of the story, I felt that the transition from the past to the present was too abrupt. I know that I should have read the first book in the series The Wrong Bride, but because I didn't, the story seemed to be skipping around the years between Maggie and Owen's initial meeting and I felt like I was missing something. The final thing that made me close the book and walk away was when Maggie started to think back about her premonitions and came to the realization that the little boy in past dreams that comforted her was Owen, it just hit the "oh you've got to be kidding" button in my brain.
Profile Image for Cynthia.
694 reviews299 followers
March 28, 2016
3.5 stars;

There's parts that I loved and parts that annoyed me a bit.
I liked the magic realism, and I always like a hot Scot who's got some wooing to do.
But I'm actually a bit sad that Owen didn't really trust and believe in Maggie a little more, or at least it took a really long time to get to that point, sigh.

But when they finally were together, it was pretty cute.
Oh and there was a bit suspense too, which was nice.
Profile Image for Jen P.
338 reviews5 followers
March 17, 2016
Just way to slow moving. The dream premise got on my nerves after a while. I just kind of struggled to finish. I love the author but last two books were a bit too slow.
Profile Image for Kate.
822 reviews33 followers
September 17, 2019
Enjoyed more than the first book because Maggie is such a great character to follow. Loved that this book covered so much time - not just picking up where book1 left off but back to when they first met a decade before. Maggie is a strong woman and I liked how she wouldn't just go with the flow. She fiercely protects what is hers and will do whatever it takes to save those she loves. The leading male was somewhat forgettable (I read this book a little while ago and can't remember his name...) and seemed more focused on enjoyable bedtimes and looking like a strong clan leader in front of his men than his bride.

I enjoy Callen's novels for pure fun reads. They're easy to read and the heroines are really likeable.
2,036 reviews17 followers
June 3, 2018
I really enjoyed the beginning of the novel, which involved the hero and heroine becoming friends; later on, however, the plot just dragged and seemed to involve everyone being idiots. The heroine sees one guy . Okay, honey. Later, when All Is Revealed, it's one of those wildly implausible situations. Among other things, the details bugged me:
327 reviews2 followers
July 8, 2022
The Groom Wore Plaid (Book 2 of the Highland Weddings Series) by Gayle Callen was a nice addition to the series.

I became frustrated with Maggie McCallum, the "h", and her constant harping, that she could not marry Owen Duff, the "H", It felt like a continuation of the same plotline from the first book, with different character names, and a different set of circumstances.

The writing overall was good, and I liked both the main characters, and the sub characters.

I do intend to read the next book in this series.
Profile Image for Miranda.
508 reviews43 followers
June 22, 2023
Meh. I did not connect with this book. Maybe it is because I didn’t read the first one. Regardless, this was boring and I heavily skimmed. I liked both MCs at first. But then they became a broken record with nothing new to add except their petty tantrums.

Also there were a few typos. There was a pretty big one. If any of the people involved in this book, happen to see this know that towards the end when he is reading a letter it says “Owen nodded…neighbors against Owen and his business.” The second Owen should have said Gregor. I read the ebook from my library.

Skip it.
Profile Image for Kim.
767 reviews1 follower
August 17, 2020
I honestly wanted this as an audiobook since I had listened to the first book in the series as an audiobook. However, this book was never made into an audio format, so I was stuck reading it the slow way. Honestly, I didn't enjoy it as much as the first one, partly because of less humor and partly because I cannot "think" in a Scottish accent. Also, the digital format of this book needs a better editor, but that isn't the author's fault and didn't detract from the story.
Profile Image for Golden Time.
410 reviews14 followers
October 6, 2019
Absolutely loved the H and h. I like how they have met and became friends but hated what came after that even I felt betrayed. Then when I thought the bethroral would smooth their past and relationship. A nightmare changed it and everything goes rough and hard for me.
The h's resistance is understandable but it's so frustrating to read her dilemma and makes me rake my hair and thinking there must be a way.
The attraction between the H and h was there and it's quiet strong despite them being separated for ten years. And yes 10 years are too long for seperation which made me more frustrated like for real, it has been 10 years and the hero didn't pursue her all those years and when they are finally together a dream is getting in the way.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Sunni.
81 reviews1 follower
November 27, 2017
I liked this one much better than the free rat book in the series! I did start to get a little slow and monotonous at one point but luckily it picked up just as I was a thinking that. Looking forward to the next book.
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