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  • Writer's pictureAmy Quick Parrish

Favorite Romantasy Novels Set in Scotland and Ireland

Kind of a specific title, eh?

Like many of us, I started out with Harry Potter -- not specifically romance, but paranormal and Scottish, yes. Then I went on to Outlander. My favorite Outlander is Written In My Heart's Own Blood, the book that was the most recent television season. I don't want to give away spoilers, but it takes place at Lallybroch in the 1980s. I'm a sucker for all things time travel and this was a great one.

Those two books, plus some genealogy work, led me to write my television pilot, Scoundrel, which is based on Scottish ancestors who dabbled in witchcraft during the 1500s. The script won the Creative Screenwriting Unique Voices - Historical award and garnered meetings with Scottish writers and directors and acceptance into the Stowe Narrative Workshop.

But here are the books I've been reading ever since.

  1. Wild Irish Heart by Tricia O'Malley. The series is really fun. The characters all live in the fictional Irish town of Grace's Cove, which sounds a lot like Dingle, a real town on the Wild Atlantic Way in Ireland. Grace's Cove is named for the real-life pirate, Grace O'Malley. All of the protagonists in the series are descendants of Grace O'Malley and they each have a different magical ability -- some can heal, many have telepathy, and so on. Each book centers on one character and the next book is like a spin-off from the 70s... we follow a new character who is also a descendant, explore her powers and let her fall in love. It's a great series and really escapist.

  2. Wild Scottish Knight. This is the first in another series byTricia O'Malley. This time, an American woman has inherited a castle in a fictional town in Scotland known as Loren Brae. The town is up in arms because there are kelpies on the loose that are scaring away tourists and the town relies on a secret society of knights that can protect the town. It sounds a little silly, but it's quite fun. My favorite so far is Wild Scottish Rose. That protagonist has a special ability with plants and there's an adorable hedgehog, magical garden gnomes and a handsome filmmaker for the love interest.

  3. Snowed In by Catherine Walsh. This is "realistic" fiction/romance, nothing at all paranormal but it takes place in Scotland and it's romance and it's my blog post, so I'm including it! It's the second in a series and I read this before the first one and had zero problems. Her protagonist is hilarious, has a rough past, and makes a pact to pretend to date someone from her town so they can go home for the holidays and not deal with the town gossip. It's a quick read and a lot of fun and set in Ireland. NOTE: This is not paranormal, but it is a romance set in Ireland and since it takes place around the holidays ... I felt that qualified as magic?

  4. Somehow this feels like it fits: The Daughter of the Pirate King by Tricia Levenseller. It's definitely YA and fits in with all the vampire/mermaid genre books but this is a pirate -- if you liked the idea of characters who descend from the true pirate Grace O'Malley, you'll love reading about this rough and tumble daughter of a pirate king. I honestly couldn't tell you if it takes place in the Carribean, Scotland, Ireland or Wyoming, but it's a fun read. So far there are three in the series.

  5. Daughter of the Siren Queen also by Tricia Levenseller. This is a sequel, and yes, our fair pirate is half pirate and half siren, which makes for a formidable protagonist and a fun read. I haven't read the third book in the series yet, but it's in my TBR pile.

If you like romance novels set in Scotland, you might like my Highlands Christmas Romance series.

A cheerful winter snowy pine tree scene with 3 Highlands Christmas romance books

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