The Renegade and the Runaway: Box Set

by Erin O'Quinn

The Renegade and the Runaway Box Set - Erin O'Quinn
Part of the The Renegade and the Runaway series:
Editions:Kindle: $ 7.49
ISBN: 9781005075491
ePub
ISBN: 9781005075491

A disgraced Scot...  A misplaced Quaker (3-novel box set)

In this box set of three novels, two men meet in a travelers’ stop in Scotland and end up as trainer and student (Unkilted) before crossing the ocean together as sailors (Unbroken) and then hitting the road on horseback to discover America’s wild blue-ridged mountains (Frontier Highlanders).

At first their relationship is oil poured on water. Gregory MacGregor, who goes by the name Grier Black when the novel begins, is a Highland clansman and outlaw hiding from his tragic past. He distrusts strangers, but he hates Campbells and British “Sassenachs” even more. David Campbell (David Adamson), the son of a Philadelphia Quaker printer who’s been kidnapped by unscrupulous men, is a naive young man whom Grier dismisses as a weak bairn. Only when he begins to train David does he discover the hidden steel in the lad’s character…and under his trousers…and at last, unfortunately, his detestable last name.

Each novel runs together like the Shee Waters, the burn where their romance begins, to form a whole. In Unkilted, Grier learns how to love. But his own melancholy nature gets in the way of happiness as he and David part in anguished misunderstanding. The central novel Unbroken recounts the sea adventures of these two would-be lovers—plus the harrowing story of Grier’s Uncle Iain and his own lost love. The final novel Frontier Highlanders is about discovery—of a  frontier father, a rough and wild territory, complex people whose skin is not white, and their own honest needs.

Published:
Publisher: New Dawn Press
Editors:
Cover Artists:
Genres:
Tags:
Pairings: M-M
Heat Level: 4
Romantic Content: 5
Ending: Click here to reveal
Character Identities: Gay
Protagonist 1 Age: 26-35
Protagonist 2 Age: 18-25
Protagonist 3 Age: 36-45
Tropes: Adopted Child, Badass Hero, Coming of Age, Cultural Differences, Death of Parent, Friends to Lovers, Healing Power of Sex, Hurt / Comfort, Love Can Heal / Redemption, Opposites Attract, Student-Teacher
Word Count: 182253
Setting: Scotland and Colonial America
Languages Available: English
Series Type: Continuous / Same Characters
Excerpt:

1... From Book I, Chapter 8:  "Interlude"

David was in turn mystified, charmed, saddened, and choked with desperate desire. Long he lay in the pallet, tossing on the hard bed redolent of unseen mountains, cupping himself, wondering at the way his small world had become a universe of possibilities.

I want him to desire me…in a different way from Archer…the way I’ve sometimes dreamed. In the way of David and Jonathan…the same way I want him.

Once, with his far away associate Alan, he had thrilled to the light touch of another man. That was an infinity ago, in a time and place forever lost, and it had lasted mere moments. This new excitement would not leave his flesh, or his fantasies.

He’s to be my trainer, hardly my lover. He comes to this place to find women. He lives and thinks at cross-purposes to my own beliefs. Be careful, David.

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But he could not expunge from his mind the thought of touching and kissing Grier Black. Yes, a black fox. He thought about the words he had read in Shakespeare…Lean and hungry.

Finally, testicles swollen, throbbing with the pain of holding back, he stroked himself until his hands were wet with spilled longing, and then he slept.

~o~

Grier could not sleep. He had unrolled his saddle blanket near Corbie, where his stallion stood in a half-doze. The large animal would lie down later, when deep sleep pulled him to the fragrant new grass.

He lay on his back gazing at the same stars and the same moon he and David had seen half an hour ago. Then, the sky had shimmered with the kind of light he had rarely seen. It had been a canopy of unknown and unknowable mystery, in a singular moment of peace.

He tried to forget the image of the flaxen-haired young man bent like a crescent moon over a reflecting pool…his comely buttocks flexing in mute acceptance of his own renegade eyes…

Stop, Gregory MacGregor. The lad is an innocent in a world of corrupt men.

Never, in all the years he had desired other men, never before had he made love with his tone of voice and the inflections of his speech, with the silent language of his body. He was too restless, too much in a hurry to find the next moor and drink from the burn that lay just over the next brae. He was always trying to escape…something. Some wayward phantom that had never revealed itself.

Och, he had never showed himself so openly…not until tonight. Now, turning once more onto his stomach, he cursed himself—again—for his obvious show of lust to a boy who had already suffered the worst of vile humanity.

Let it go. Let sleep come…

 2... From Book 2, Chapter 11: "The Release"

Grier was still an invalid, but he’d claimed a bed he could tolerate. It was the floor of David’s room, a cubby-hole the sailors called a “cabin” where David changed his bandage. He noted with a wry expression that the lad kept his eyes averted from his groin; but he said nothing. He could wait.

He clenched his jaw but didnae resist when his host sent him into a corner carrying a privy—a large chipped basin—and had stood like a soldier while the lad cleaned his verra personal places with a cloth dipped in water.

Well, he bore it not so muckle like a soldier. More like a wounded bear, back turned, leaning against a wall, his thigh throbbing and his cock too, cursing under his breath.

“Am I clean now, lad?”

“Shush, Grier. Spread your legs a little. Careful of that wound.”

“I’ve never spread my legs for any man.”

David was kneeling behind him, gently cleansing his buttocks. 

“I need you to be still.”

“And I need you, David. Still—or any way at all. Kiss my arse, lad, and use your tongue…”

David’s hand stopped, but he did not remove it.

“What…did you say?”

“You heard me. The training you wanted, ’tis trembling before you. My arse is on fire for you. Lick my crack, lift me to the sky.”

A hesitation, a soft touch.A finger…or a wet tongue…something stroked his cleft, and his hungry cock shook, heavy with desire.

He moaned like a bairn and spread wider.

“More, David. More. Put it inside…”

“Put…what, Grier?”

“Your finger, or ten of them, your tongue, your cock. I want it all…”

David gripped his buttocks, hard…and now he could feel the heat of the man’s breath and the scalding sucks first next to his hole, then almost on the balls, a back-and-forth, an in-and-out, a flaring of the muscles deep inside his core, a rush of his own hot fluids.

He let it go on forever, shaking and crying, loving the release, hating the end, wanting more.

3...From Book 3, Chapter 4: "No Walls"

He turned and walked back to the hidden stream, then sank into the shadows that played in the water, waiting for David. After ten minutes, his mate eased silently into the burn next to him. But he kept his head tipped to the tree-tops, away from David, as if seeking patience, or another angel.

David’s hand found his inner thigh.

“How is your, um, your wound, Gregory?”

Not even looking at this companion, he managed to answer. “I think a frontier physician needs to inspect it.”

“Then stand in front of me. But please don’t rush your doctor.”

Grinning, he stood, his granite cock a finger’s breadth from David’s face, gazing at the few small scraps of blue sky he saw through a roof of pine branches. He felt a hot mouth begin to travel, verra slow, from his thigh…from where the long scar ended…to the shaft of his bod. His arms crossed, Gregory bore it like a braw Scot, until he couldnae breathe properly.

“No’ so slow, David. Please.”

“Raise me up, Gregory.”

Bending, grasping the lad under his arm pits, he lifted David to a standing position, until their unyielding iron groins rubbed and scraped together.

“Crazy. Ye make me crazy,” he muttered into David’s mouth, grasping his perfect buttocks.

“What happens if I turn my back, as you said? As you threatened?”

“By the seven hundred sidh, lad, dinnae make me do it.”

David whispered, “Do it.”

“Ye cannae be ready for that.”

David answered by turning in his arms, letting a soft arse take the place of a heavy cock. 

He must know I’m already maddened with the need for him. He leaned a little, speaking into the silken nape of his neck. “Nae. I cannae do it. I fear I might hurt ye, love.”

David’s butt cheeks settled into his shaking cock. “Do it.”

“Och, David…” 

“Wet me first.”

Kneeling, he pushed the buttocks apart, then thrust his tongue along the crack, then into the hole.

In answer, David’s arse shook and danced, until Gregory couldnae, wouldnae hold back. He pushed inside, but only a verra wee distance. And that was all his desperate cock needed, releasing in a spate of scalding fluid, into and over his lover’s hot flesh.

COLLAPSE
Reviews:R.M. Sayan on Goodreads wrote:

I found this book through the author in a Facebook group for LGBT Writers, and okay, I wasn't convinced at first, but something about the description got me. Something like, do it for the rowdy Scottish Highlander aesthetic. And oh boy, I was not disappointed.

The only thing I'd say took me by surprise is that it's advertised as an enemies-to-lovers romance, when I found it to be a little more like a bad-first-impression-and-then-everything-goes-smoothly romance. Not that I mind, in fact I'd say the latter is a slightly healthier alternative, I just expected a little more spice in that aspect.

Another little thing that kind if annoyed me was that Grier's and Iain's plans always went right. I get that this is to make the reader understand that they're Good At What They Do, but sometimes, maybe it's just me, but I like to see characters struggle.

Anyways, regardless of these little peeves, the romance was *chef's kiss* exquisite. The buildup was beautifully slow-burn and reached a very satisfying ending. This book made a nerve-wrackingly excellent use of dramatic irony that perpetually had me at the edge of my seat. And! The one POV character that was not directly involved in the romance —that's Iain— had reasons to be there as much as Grier and David, perhaps even more. The side characters were also well-written and memorable (Duncan and Thomas are my faves), and the non-romance plot was just as captivating as the romance.

And as for the prose... I'm floored. The writing is so incredibly immersive, when I was reading I felt like I could look up from the screen and find myself in a roadside inn in the middle of Scotland.

Favorite thing? Too many to choose. The setting, the seamless blend of history and ficiton, the perfectly paced romance, the storyline that was definitely not The Queer Struggle (and there was room to make it such, mind you), the sex, the antagonists, the side-characters, and I could go on and on.

Personal peeve? That thing I said about most things going right.

4.5 out of 5 stars. This was a beautiul read, and I physically cannot sit still until the next book is out.

"Bo" on Goodreads wrote:

Love and Sweet Revenge

Erin O'Quinn has done it again--taken us back in time to a period of history we do not know very well and has woven a tale of carnal and spiritual love, intrigue and revenge in the 1770s on the high seas, in Edinburgh, and also on the outer banks of North Carolina that will delight and tickle you from the beginning to end.

You must, of course, read the first book in the coupling to get your bearings about Highlander Grier (aka Gregory) and American Quaker David as well as Grier's cousin Duncan and his father Iain, who is Grier's deliciously scheming uncle. Grier and David continue their on-and-off-again tryst that began in the first book when they and Duncan set sail for the Colonies…

Well, this one is a rocker from start to finish, and even though almost half the book is a sea voyage, it's a deeply affecting love story with intellectual overtones that will surprise and delight you every page along the way.

The way matters come down in the last quarter of the book is quite ingenious and a bit heart stopping at times, and the manner in which all concerned find their HEA was a surprise and a vastly satisfying tickler.

Bravo, Ms. Quinn, once again!

Bryan Clark on Amazon wrote:

If you're a fan of the series Outlander, you will love this novel. If there is ever a character that you will absolutely adore, it's David Campbell.

Sweet and innocent, David's life is suddenly at the mercy of a Scotsman that goes by the name of Grier Black. Grier is a strong alpha male, a renegade outlaw who just wants to be a highlander. He was never looking to take care of anyone other than himself. David and Grier forge a slow burning relationship that neither could have ever foreseen in their destiny. Filled with strong emotions and stumbling blocks, they both eventually find their center of gravity which leads them to their emotional truths.

I've read several of Erin O'Quinn's novels and this is some of her best work. The amount of research and knowledge that had to have gone into such great writing is unimaginable. Her ability to masterfully write dialogue in a Scottish dialect spoken in the 1770's, demonstrates just how talented she is. Hands down, UNKILTED is a five-star book.

"Bo" on Goodreads wrote:

Love and Sweet Revenge

Erin O'Quinn has done it again--taken us back in time to a period of history we do not know very well and has woven a tale of carnal and spiritual love, intrigue and revenge in the 1770s on the high seas, in Edinburgh, and also on the outer banks of North Carolina that will delight and tickle you from the beginning to end.

You must, of course, read the first book in the coupling to get your bearings about Highlander Grier (aka Gregory) and American Quaker David as well as Grier's cousin Duncan and his father Iain, who is Grier's deliciously scheming uncle. Grier and David continue their on-and-off-again tryst that began in the first book when they and Duncan set sail for the Colonies…

Well, this one is a rocker from start to finish, and even though almost half the book is a sea voyage, it's a deeply affecting love story with intellectual overtones that will surprise and delight you every page along the way.

The way matters come down in the last quarter of the book is quite ingenious and a bit heart stopping at times, and the manner in which all concerned find their HEA was a surprise and a vastly satisfying tickler.

Bravo, Ms. Quinn, once again!

"Bo" on Goodreads wrote:

Move Over Mr. Cooper

James Fenimore Cooper has nothing on Erin O'Quinn when it comes to setting the stage and exploring the underbrush of pre-Revolution America. That's because Ms. Quinn puts us right there on the ground from North Carolina northward to Philadelphia and back again before crossing the Appalachains into Kentucky.

With Daniel Boone providing some direction along the way.

When I was a kid I was a Fenimore Cooper freak--I would go to the library and read every one of his books over and over again and revel in the deep sense of history and the subtle, but sometimes obvious, personal tensions between the main characters.

Ms. Quinn's tale doesn't quite give us a Natty Bumpo or Chingachgook throwback but she does give us Gregory the Scottish Highland outlaw and David the scholarly Philadelphia Quaker whose stormy and completely unabashed lust and love for each other is the linchpin which holds this one together.

That she throws in Daniel Boone is hardly gratuitous because she also gives us a runaway slave and a teenage Native American nicknamed Sky who carry the narrative along in many wonderful ways.

This is logically the end of a brilliant series--bravo!


The reviews reprinted here are based on each of the three novels.

About the Author

Erin O'Quinn was born almost literally on the side of a mountain in Nevada and was hauled kicking and screaming into the nearest town, fifty miles away, to attend first grade. To this day, she claims to be kindergarten-deprived.

O'Quinn earned a few degrees from the University of So. California, but her real education began on the back docks of the Las Vegas (NV) Review-Journal newspaper; on the good-old-boy car lots in Abilene, TX where she sold new Chryslers and used cars; and in a big-box store in Austin, TX where she alternately hauled pallets and ran a garden center.

You'll find a lot of action-adventure, and a character-centered, plot-centered group of seven series and a few stand-alones

Of 46 published works for adults, 33 (I think) are in the gay lit (M/M) genre. From the Noble Dimensions series (small town/contemporary) to Old World Ireland, Jacobite-era  and modern Scotland; and back to the retro world of Ireland in the Roaring 20s, she says, "My men, and my settings, are no-frills, no hearts and flowers. But I think a certain nobility and even spiritual element often creep in among the honest sexual feelings."

Any reviews you see are unsolicited, and are always welcome.

Settle back, enjoy what Erin O'Quinn calls "literotica with a flare for the unusual...thoughtful and plotful...men with passions too big for their britches."


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