I want to start by thanking Delilah for letting me come play in her space here again. Visiting here is always a blast. I had plans for a different subject for today’s guest blog, but in the last two weeks real life has kicked my butt in more ways than one. So I opted to do something different instead, something a little less serious than what I started with—some of my favorite romance novel hero types.
We all love our romance novel heroes. For some of us, they’re the main reason we pick up a book. Even if you don’t shop by the cover of the book (which I don’t), the story blurb gives you a taste of the hero that makes you think, ‘Hm, that sounds like a guy I want to fall in love with.’ And if you shop by the cover art, well, mostly naked men on book covers…very visually appealing when you’re browsing shelves, no?
I love a great, tortured hero when I’m reading, but they’re sometimes really draining to write, depending on just how dark their stories are. I also love a hot Alpha hero, but some of them veer into asshole territory, and it’s a fine line to walk. When I’m reading, I also enjoy a hero who has a sense of humor, but humor is really subjective, so it can be as much of a challenge to write as a tortured Alpha hero, plus a guy who’s a clown might be too shallow to fall in love with. Maybe a dangerous hero, one who would kiss you stupid, right before he kills you? Done right, I’ve read some really amazing stories with very dangerous heroes. Then there is the guy next door—but they can be a little boring if they’re too realistic.
So what is a romance writer supposed to do?
Some of my favorite books don’t rely on just one of those qualities to build heroes I’ve fallen in love with, and probably you, too, yes? There is a Viking series I’ve been enjoying for years with the hottest heroes, many of them Alphas for sure, and they are the funniest books I’ve ever read. One of my favorite authors (I aspire to someday pull off romantic suspense half as good as hers) has done some heroes who are really anti-heroes—assassins, who falls in love with assassins, I ask you?—purely Alpha and some of them really tortured to boot, and they would do anything to keep their heroines protected. How do you not fall in love with a man like that, no matter what his profession?
So, tell me what kind of romance novel heroes do you like best? Strong and silent? Tortured but sweet? Deadly? Everybody who shares by 5 p.m. ET on Fri, Feb. 3, 2017 will have their name entered in a giveaway (via RandomResult.com) for an ebook copy of Hunting Medusa.
Hunting Medusa, The Medusa Trilogy, Book 1
One murderous mission. One killer case of PMS. Who said “the curse” was a myth?
When Kallan Tassos tracks down the current Medusa, he expects to find a monster. Instead he finds a wary, beautiful woman, shielded by a complicated web of spells that foils his plans for a quick kill and retrieval of her protective amulet.
Andrea Rosakis expects the handsome Harvester to go for the kill. Instead, his attempt to take the amulet imprinted on her skin without harming her takes her completely by surprise. And ends with the two of them in a magical bind–together. But Kallan isn’t the only Harvester on Andi’s trail…
Kallan wiped his sweaty hand down his jeans, hoping the shriek of the Medusa’s alarm shutting off hadn’t wakened her. He didn’t want her prepared for an attack. He’d prefer to kill her quickly and get the hell out. He could be back in Baltimore by supper tomorrow with the amulet in hand for Uncle Ari to destroy, ending the protective spell for the rest of the Medusa’s descendants.
He touched the doorknob, felt the locks disengage beneath his hand, then turned the handle and swung the door wide.
Silence greeted him, and he took that as a good sign. No creaking came from upstairs, as there would be if she’d wakened. Good. Nevertheless, he stepped inside cautiously, listening hard. He took another step after a few heartbeats, trying to remember just where the kitchen table and chairs stood from his limited view the day before.
He made it past the furniture and paused to listen again. Still nothing. He frowned. With the power off, the house was too quiet. Surely the sudden and complete silence would wake her, even if she hadn’t heard the brief noise of the alarm shutting down. He slid one foot forward on the smooth wooden floor, and suddenly she was there. Fiery pain shot up his left arm. He grunted, realized she’d stabbed him deeply. He swung his other hand up, managing to hit her on the side of the head.
She cried out but didn’t go down, swinging her blade again. He caught her wrist, but she managed to get another slice to his already-injured forearm before he yanked her arm behind her.
Her booted foot connected with his knee—hard—and he bit back a string of curses at the pain, but didn’t let her go. Why wasn’t she barefoot? If she’d been sleeping, she should be barefoot. His left arm was nearly useless, blood pumping steadily from his wounds, so he crowded her up against the nearest surface. The refrigerator. He shoved hard, hearing her moan when he twisted her arm a little more.
Her blade hit the floor between them. She kicked backward again, and her foot hit his knee from the other side this time.
“Dammit,” he muttered, flattening her between his body and the appliance’s cool metal surface. His arm burned, warm blood dripping from his fingers.
“Get off me, you murdering bastard,” she said, her words slurred slightly from her face being mashed into the refrigerator.
“Well now, that’s not very nice. Especially since I’ve never murdered anyone. Yet,” he added darkly, tightening his grip on her wrist. The bones in her arm were fragile and he was fully aware he could crush them, render her arm as useless as she had his. But he didn’t. He wasn’t Stavros.
“You’re not going to start with me, either, Harvester.”
Mouthy. He grinned at the back of her head. Even trapped and defenseless as she was now, she didn’t stop fighting, even verbally. He had to work to keep from laughing as she continued to threaten him. No one had warned him the Medusa would be talkative. Or soft, he realized when her bottom shifted back into his groin. He concentrated on breathing evenly when his nerve endings all came to life. He’d never imagined he might be aroused by the Medusa.
“Wh-what are you doing?” she asked suddenly.
Kallan realized he wasn’t moving—or most of him wasn’t. He shut his eyes for a second, clenching his jaw. Her ass now cushioned his throbbing erection.
“Hey!” She shrank closer to the fridge, making a soft sound when the move forced her arm higher behind her.
He shifted, easing her wrist a little lower. This wasn’t going at all as he’d imagined it. “Stop moving.” He forced himself to unclench his jaw.
“If you think I’m going to make it easy for you to kill me, Harvester, you have another thing coming.” She didn’t stop wriggling.
Growling, he flattened her completely between his body and the refrigerator again.
She froze, and he could feel her pulse beating crazily in the wrist he still held. Fear? He imagined that was one cause. Anger too, probably.
He doubted she was having the same unexpected reaction to him that he was to her.
Not that it was a bad thing that she wasn’t suddenly aroused, too.
He just needed to stop thinking about it.
Concentrate on the task at hand.
Kill the Medusa.
Feel how soft her ass was against him. If he shifted his hips just a little—
No. He growled again, and she shifted, just as he’d imagined so her softness cradled him even more.
“Get off, Harvester,” she whispered.
“Stop calling me that.” He hated hearing it from her lips for some reason. Yes, it was what his name meant. It was what he was destined to do. But the contempt in her tone… He didn’t like it at all.
As though the Medusa had room to be contemptuous of him.
“It’s your name.” Her voice was stronger now, as if she’d somehow sensed his unexpected inner struggle. “Why shouldn’t I use it?”
“You won’t be alive long enough to worry about it.” He ignored her behind against his groin for the moment and took a slow breath, trying to remember his plan.
Get in, find her, kill her, get the amulet, and get out.
Well, his plan was not going very well at all.
He didn’t want to be the first Harvester in so many generations to finally find the Medusa and then fail at his job.
Buy: Samhain: http://www.samhainpublishing.com/book/4883/hunting medusa
About the Author
Elizabeth Andrews has been a book lover since she was able to read. Almost as long as she’s been enjoying great books, she’s been attempting to write her own. When she found her mother’s romance stash as a teenager, it was a natural progression to write romances. Along with her enormous book stash, she lives with her husband of twenty years, two young adult sons, and belongs to two cats. When she’s not buried in her personal library, writing, or at the day-job, there’s a garden outside with flowers, herbs and vegetables that requires occasional attention.