passion rating: warm
Scandal in Scotland is the second in a series of books by Karen Hawkins centered on an object called the Hurst Amulet. An amulet is a charm, usually worn about the neck, which wards off evil. In Scandal in Scotland, our heroine and hero are chasing after an onyx box that does not have any charms or jewelry in it at all. The onyx box is consistently referred to as an ancient artifact - an artifact being something created by someone for some practical purpose. Perhaps later in the Hurst Amulet series the amulet will appear and the reason for the name of the series will become clear. I'll never know. This book was such a bland, predictable read; I've no interest in the rest of the series.
The book - and each chapter - begins with a letter from one Hurst family member to another. (I disliked the letters — they interrupted the narrative, and given that I hadn’t read the first book, several of them made little sense.) In the first chapter, the letter is from imprisoned explorer and Egyptologist Michael Hurst to his brother sea captain William Hurst. Michael is being held by captors who want the amulet/artifact/box. The Hurst brothers’ sister Mary apparently got the amulet/artifact/box in the first book in the series and handed it off to William. William plans to take it to Egypt and give it to the as yet unidentified bad guys holding Michael. William brings the amulet/artifact/box to his ship and is readying to set sail when, in his cabin, he encounters the only woman he's ever loved, the famed actress Marcail Beauchamp.
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