Today I’d like to welcome to Sam Still Reading Avril Tremayne, author of the new release Wanting Mr Wrong. Avril writes romance for Random House and Harlequin and sounds like a fun person to talk to, having worked a variety of jobs (including working with the occasional celebrity) and being a fellow shoe obsessive! See what Avril has to say about romance heroes below:
Wrong Guy – Right Book
I call my theory about romance heroes the diet theory. (Diets are close to my heart at the moment because I stacked it on with a vengeance this past festive season and am now paying the price.)
The theory, which is not new by any stretch of the imagination, is: the moment you’re told you can’t have something, it becomes the exact thing you want. Or, on the flip side, the moment you’re told you should want something…? Well of course you don’t want it! It works even if it’s you telling yourself.
For me at the moment, it’s all about salad v. a Cadbury Creme Egg, and it’s a daily struggle.
Same deal for my heroines, valiantly dishing themselves up the masculine equivalent of a lettuce leaf, but I know – and I suspect they know – that they are always, always going to end up with the Egg.
The ‘bad boy’ hero is a typical Cadbury number. He’s a hothead, probably tattooed, probably rides a motor bike. He was always in trouble as a kid. Maybe he’s had a stint in gaol. Could be a jaded rock star. Or a cage fighter. Or an ex-cop/military rebel. He’s the guy our heroine’s parents don’t want her anywhere near – so how is she not going to at least think about him? Especially if she’s a ‘good girl’ whose life has been tame, boring even, until he stepped into it.
The ‘bad boy’ may also have a touch of ‘the rake’ – another Egg – about him. A staple of regency romances, the ‘rake’ has sown so many wild oats, he could corner the market on porridge. Often wealthy, always sophisticated, he’s suffering ennui – especially when it comes to women, because he’s had them all. Nobody believes he could possibly be interested in our heroine – least of all her! But she’d sure like to prove everyone wrong and reform him.
And then there’s my own specialty – heroes that there’s nothing obviously wrong with, that the heroine’s friends and family love… And yet the heroine (perverse creature) won’t let herself fall for him. I love the complexity involved in making these heroes and heroines dance around each other. Why does she feel threatened? How can he want her when she’s so prickly? What barriers does she have to build to resist him? What are his tactics to dismantle the barriers? When does she fall? And can he forgive her for what she puts him through?
These are the questions I ask myself as I’m writing – and you will see the perfect example in Wanting Mr Wrong, as Evie keeps shoring up the walls to her heart, only to have Jack keep smashing them down.
It’s not all about the happy ending – the fun is in how they get there, and the more wrong the hero, the more fun it is. Because there’s nothing more romantic than that moment when you toss out the salad and sink your teeth into that Cadbury Creme Egg.
I’m definitely with Avril there – who doesn’t secretly think, ‘I want one!’ every time they see a Cadbury Crème Egg at the checkout , then just buy salad instead?!
Thanks for stopping by Avril. My review of Wanting Mr Wrong will be published later today, so drop in and read (preferably while eating a Crème Egg).