In HIGHLAND RETREATS: THE ARCHITECTURE AND INTERIORS OF SCOTLAND’S ROMANTIC NORTH, Mary Miers tells the story of how the Highlands were ‘reinvented’ by early tourists and appropriated as a holiday paradise for the rich. She explores the influence of the romanticised North on architecture and taste within the framework of a vividly portrayed social history that scotches many myths. The book features breathtaking photographs from the Country Life Picture Library, as well as specially commissioned photographs and rare historic images, and is beautifully designed by Robert Dalrymple. But it’s also the first serious study of a significant body of architecture that has hitherto been largely overlooked, and its eight chapters are full of fascinating information and scholarly research. Mary Miers is an architectural historian, writer and journalist whose previous books include The Western Seaboard and Highlands and Islands; an anthology of Poetry of Place. She commutes by the Caledonian Sleeper between her home in Ross-shire and the offices of Country Life, where she spends several days a week in her role as the magazine’s Fine Arts and Books Editor.