Hi Eliza and welcome to HJ! We’re so excited to chat with you about your new release, The Rebel Wears Plaid!
Please summarize the book for the readers here:
The Rebel Wears Plaid is the first book in my Prince Charlie’s Angels series. I thought it would be a lot of fun to take some of the strong women of history who were immeasurable in their part during the Jacobite uprising and pair them with men who are equally patriotic to their cause. In Rebel, my heroine Jenny is a highborn lady, her brother is a powerful chief of his clan—but has sided with the Royal Government against the Jacboites, going against their people and everything their father and grandfather fought and died for.
Jenny decides that she’s going to go against her brother—in secret—to fulful her family’s legacy, and it starts at a young age where she makes an oath with her childhood friends to see it through. By day she pretends to be the lady her brother expects, but by night she’s raising an army, gathering weapons and coin and support for the prince who will eventually land on Scottish soil from exile. She’s grown quite infamous as the Mistress J. While out on one of her missions she runs into a very sexy Highlander, pretending to be a Jacobite soldier. Toran Fraser has a family that is rife with backstabbers. His uncle in particular is famous for jumping sides depending on whether it suits him or not. He’s been told by his uncle that his mother was murdered by a Jacobite rebel, and when he runs into Jenny he is pretty sure she night be the culprit. Since he’s been plotting on taking down the Jacobites for months, he agrees to join her band of rebels if only to dismantle them from the inside.
But it soon becomes apparent which side is right and which side is wrong, and Toran has to make a choice. Should he join the rebellion or stick by his uncle’s side? It’s a moral choice he has to make, and one he shouldn’t make lightly, even though kissing Jenny almost takes away any doubts he might have.
Please share your favorite quote from the book
“Love is what keeps us on the right path when violence and horrors threaten to undo us.”
If your book was optioned for a movie, what scene would you use for the audition of the main characters and why?
One of my favorite scenes in the book is actually in the beginning, the first time that Toran and Jenny meet. She’s challenging him with a gun pointed at his heart, and he’s trying to figure out how he can dupe her. I just love the chemistry and the very teasing-ness of the scene. I think you can tell right off the bat that there are sparks of all kinds going off and that their story is going to be a fun ride!
Here is an excerpt from that scene:
Toran jerked around. Suddenly, figures melted out from the shadows. Scots, but in the dark and dressed as they were, he couldn’t make out what clan they hailed from. At the center of the five men stood a lass. Aye, she wore trews and had her hair up under a cap, wisps of golden strands peeking through, but there was no hiding the curves beneath her shirt and waistcoat. In the moonlight filtering through the trees, she looked bonnie—high, arching cheekbones, a mouth that puckered into a frown. But what struck him most was the spark of fire in her gaze. Her eyes reflected the light of the moon, almost making her look like she was glowing.
And the muzzle of her pistol was pointed right at him. Outlaws… Of all the bloody luck. He reached for his own pistol tucked into his belt.
“Dinna move,” the lass said. Her voice was throaty, sensual. “Else I put a bullet through your heart.”
A slow grin formed on Toran’s face. “What’s to say I won’t put a bullet in yours first?”
The lass looked down at Archie and then flicked her gaze back to his. “Ye’re outnumbered. Let’s say ye were willing to pull your weapon before I took my shot, and then ye were to waste your bullet, there’d be five more cutting through ye before ye were able to see the result.” Again, she looked at Archie. “And your friend doesna seem like he will be much help.”
“We’re verra close to the English garrison, lass. Any shot ye make will be a beacon to the dragoons lurking about. And trust me, there are hundreds of them headed this way as we speak.”
“Is that so?” She glanced at Archie once more. “A prison break? So ye two are rebels, aye?”
Toran didn’t answer. Let her come to her own conclusions.
“We have horses.” She kept her gaze on his, and he had the intense urge to draw closer. “Ye and your friend can have one when we return to my camp—for a price. Why not donate your coin to the cause and join us? We’ve a need for more rebels.”
Toran did not want to join her. Now, if she’d asked him to join her for some mutual warmth under a plaid, that would be another story. Then again, she had a point about the bullets. And he truly did not want to die.
“I’m guessing from your current circumstances ye are in need of a helping hand, sir.” Her voice was smooth, even melodic, but still filled with authority. And considering that she was the one speaking, she certainly gave the impression that she was the one in charge. Fascinating.
A group of men led by a woman? Not a common thing, and intensely intriguing. Whoever she was, she had ballocks as full of steel as his own. And if he weren’t trapped in the woods with her, a hundred redcoats on his tail, he might have asked her to join him for a dram.
“Who are ye?” Toran asked.
A soft laugh escaped her, and her hand waved dismissively. “Not yet, sir. Ye’ll have to prove yourself first.”
Prove himself? He gritted his teeth. “All right, we’ll join ye.” There really was no other choice. He and Archie needed a quick escape, and her horse would provide that. Just because he was taking her up on the offer now didn’t mean he had to stick it out. In fact, as soon as he could, he’d steal the horse and somehow get Archie back to Fraser lands where he could make certain the rest of his family was safe from Boyd.
“Good.” She nodded to Dirk. “Search them for weapons, and then help the wounded man onto your horse.”
Toran stood still for the inspection, gritting his teeth as his weapons were removed. “I’ve said we’d join ye. Why then are ye treating me like a prisoner?”
The lass cocked her head to the side, a slight grin curling her upper lip. “We must first see that ye are trustworthy.” With an added challenge echoing in her words, she said, “Ye can ride with me. And dinna try any tricks, else ye find yourself verra dead.”
The lass didn’t beat around the bush, and there was no hint of humor in her tone at all. She meant what she said.
Toran climbed onto the back of her horse, his cold, wet body flush to her warmer, dry back. Beneath the icy exterior was a lass full of lush curves. Mo chreach… Good heavens, but she felt good. Hesitantly, he placed an arm around her waist.
She shuddered. “Blast, but ye’re soaked,” she hissed. “Ye should have warned me. And ye smell like the devil’s own chamber pot.”
Toran chuckled. “A hazard of escape, lass.”
Her back straightened, and she leaned forward, away from him. “Ye can call me Mistress J.”
Mistress J? Why did that sound familiar?
“And ye are?” she urged.
“I’m called Toran,” he said slowly as realization struck him. The night had taken a very interesting turn. For he was holding onto the woman he suspected might be responsible for his mother’s death.
Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.
What do you want people to take away from reading this book?
While the book is based off of real people, Jenny is a fictionalized combination of several women, and Toran is also fictionalized. With the series, I really wanted to take these strong women, keep them strong, but give them happily ever afters. I wanted to show that love, and falling in love, and being willing to make sacrifices for the ones you love, is not a weakness, but makes you stronger. I also wanted to show that often times were are faced with questions, and big decisions and that we don’t always know the answer right away. I hope I was able to convey that well in the story. My favorite thing about a historical romance is the rich history, the drama and adventure, and of course falling in love.
Thanks for blogging at HJ!
Giveaway: A paperback copy of The Rebel Wears Plaid by Eliza Knight
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Toran Fraser encounters a mysterious rebel, and he can’t resist being recruited to her cause…
Toran Fraser is hell-bent on taking down the Jacobites. On a late-night mission, he’s intercepted by a woman known only as “Mistress J,” who’s determined to put Prince Charlie back on the throne of Scotland. Toran can’t resist her appeal—especially with her pistol pointed at his heart—and suddenly finds himself joining the rebellion…
By day, highborn Jenny Mackintosh runs her estate in the Highlands. By night, she’s one of Prince Charlie’s Angels—a band of Jacobite rebels. Scoffing at mortal danger, she raises coin, delivers weapons, and recruits soldiers for the rebellion. When she encounters a handsome Highlander who is clearly on the run, she is more than a little intrigued. She isn’t expecting to be his enemy…
Meet the Author:
ELIZA KNIGHT is an award-winning and USA Today bestselling author of over fifty sizzling historical romances. Under the name E. Knight, she’s known for riveting tales that cross landscapes around the world. When not reading, writing, or researching, she chases after her three children. In her spare time she likes daydreaming, wine-tasting, traveling, hiking, and visiting with family and friends. She lives in Maryland.
Author Website: http://www.elizaknight.com