I wonder if you have come across the first three books by Shona MacLean (niece of Alistair MacLean): The Redemption of Alexander Seaton, A game of Sorrows and Crucible of Secrets? The first and third are set in Aberdeenshire (Banff) and the second in Ulster where the principle character in all three - Alexander Seaton - has his roots. The setting is the early 1600s but these are not conventional historical novels - no royalty, politicians, major battles or great events. The historical element is the social setting - the life and times of 'ordinary' people - and it seems authentic (she has a Ph.D. in history). She also inherits the MacLean tradition of story telling, mystery, action and the odd murder. They are really good reads and I can recommend them.