Ardvreck Castle is a ruin which sits on a promontory in Loch Assynt, Sutherland, Scotland. This is one of the most hauntingly beautiful areas of Scotland.
|Ardvreck Castle is the inspiration for the castle I named Munrick in my last three books. In my novels, Torrin MacLeod is the chief who lives here and he's the hero of My Notorious Highlander. The last portion of the book takes place here.|
A sign at Ardvreck Castle reads: "Built by Angus Mor III in the latter half of the 15th century, Ardvreck Castle began as a simple rectangular block, three or four storeys in height. Almost a century later, Donald Ban IX enhanced the castle's accommodation by adding the tower and, in the fashion of the time, the vaulted cellars and vault over the great hall on the first floor."
"The stone wall that cuts off the promontory follows the line of an earlier rampart, augmenting the castle's naturally defensive position. Even after Donald Ban's improvements, Ardvreck was still small, requiring other buildings around it to house kitchens, servant's quarters and stables. However, a place was found for Ardvreck's most famous, although unwilling, occupant, James Graham, Marquis of Montrose, imprisoned here in 1650 after his defeat at the Battle of Carbisdale."
The information from the sign continues: "Throughout its life, Ardvreck was the scene of much violence, with murders, executions, and sieges by both traditional enemies and quarrelsome branches of the MacLeod family. In 1672, a 14-day siege by the MacKenzies of Wester Ross marked the end of MacLeod ownership of Assynt. Nature carried out the final act of violence on the castle in 1795 when it was struck by lightning and largely destroyed.
|View of Loch Assynt|
|What the castle may have looked like in its prime.|
|Click to enlarge|
My Notorious Highlander: Chief Torrin MacLeod vows to possess and wed the spirited lady who stole his heart the previous winter. But Lady Jessie MacKay wants naught to do with the dangerous warrior, no matter how devilishly handsome and charming he is. When Torrin arrives unexpectedly at Jessie's home, along with Gregor MacBain, a man Jessie was formerly handfasted to, she is thrown off-kilter. She never wanted to see either man again, but now they are vying for her hand. Torrin promises to protect her from the devious MacBain, but how can she trust Torrin when she has witnessed how lethal he is?
The more time Torrin spends with the strong and independent Jessie, the more determined he is to win her heart. Once she allows him a kiss, he feels her passion flame as hot as his own. After she knows Torrin better, Jessie finds herself falling for the fearsome Highlander. But the odds are stacked against them. The sinister MacBain is bent on kidnapping Jessie, making her his bride and killing Torrin, while Jessie's conniving younger brother, Haldane, is determined to use Jessie to take over the castle in his older brother's absence. Jessie fears she can never be with the man she loves, while Torrin will do everything in his power to ensure they are together forever. In his heart, she is the only lady for him.