I have posted this on several email lists (apologies if you've already seen it!), but I am seriously blocked. What I'm trying to do is come up with a title for this book, one that doesn't sound like some kind of bodice ripping "Highland Warrior" thing. Elizabeth Chadwick had the best suggestion -- turn to the Bible -- which I plan to do next, but in the meantime, if anyone else has suggestions, I'll be eternally grateful! If you'd rather not post a comment, my email is doubtfulmuse-at-gmail.com.
Here is a simplified description of the book:
It is the summer of 1488, and King James the Third of Scotland faces a rebellion led by men loyal to his son Prince James, Duke of Rothesay. Fighting for the King is John Sempill of Elliotstoun, a young man of nineteen. Knocked unconscious during the battle, John awakes to find his father dead and his comrades routed. He returns home in defeat; he has inherited his father’s lands and Sheriff’s title, but his dreams of gaining a knighthood are shattered when he learns that the King has been murdered and that his son has now seized the throne.
John's situation is difficult. Because he was his father’s only son and is, as yet, unmarried, he is especially vulnerable. Soon he finds himself at the mercy of the Stewarts of Darnley.
Lots goes on after this: thieving, burning, rieving. A bitter marriage with an unhappy woman (who eventually comes around). A revolt against the king and a chance to redeem himself, which he does. And finally, a dénouement that concludes with a reconciliation with his wife and a bright future before him at the court of King James the Fourth.