Monday, August 10, 2009

A.C. Arthur GuestBlog: Make-A-Point, Take-A-Stand Men We Can’t Forget

From Michelle: A.C. Arthur’s Donovan family series is the one everybody’s talking about – and “Full House Seduction” is the hawt-n’-steamy-off-the-press installment readers have been clamoring for. If you can’t find it in your local bookstore, do yourself a fave and grab it online or at eharlequin.com. And please welcome A.C. today w/ your warmest “Oh! I loved him, too!” Bella buongiorno…
From A.C.: First, I’d like to give a sincere thanks to Michelle for inviting me to Romance Buy The Book and the Bellas for having me!

Like every young girl I contrived an idea of a hero very early in life, but as time went on that ideal changed. From Todd Wilkins in Sweet Valley High’s “Double Love” to LL Cool J who just had something special going on with his lips (and this was before I knew what exactly). :) It was like a world in my own head where I had all these choices of the mate that was just right for me.

Through countless books and more movies than was probably healthy for a business education student I began to take traits from all the heroes I’d ever fallen in love with to build the one that would be perfect for me—well, for my first story.

It wasn’t hard to find the best traits: he had to be ultra cool like John Travolta’s portrayal of Danny Zuko in the renowned hit “Grease”; super sexy and charismatic like Billy Dee Williams as Louis McKay in “Lady Sings The Blues”; and loyal and just a tad arrogant like Josh Templeton in Nora Roberts’ “Daring To Dream.”

Of course, later on down the road, I began to lean more towards the boyishly, handsome charm of Tom Hanks in Splash and “Sleepless In Seattle.” I adored the rugged, borderline bad guys like Harrison Ford in “Star Wars” and “Raiders of the Lost Ark” and Michael Fury in Nora Roberts’ “Finding The Dream” (okay, so you probably guessed by now that my favorite author and trilogy is The Dream series by Nora Roberts, lol).

Anyway, all of these men, these movies, these books set the stage for my very first hero: Jordan Blake in “Object of His Desire,” my first published romance novel in 2003. They also spawned the idea for my alluring hero-based Donovans series, with a great new guy, Brock Remington making his debut in “Full House Seduction” from Kimani Press which releases this month. I’m still on a mission to create wonderfully romantic and sinfully sexy heroes because I believe they truly make the book.

Sure, I love a strong, sassy heroine with a great emotional issue that must be resolved before her life can go on. But at the end of the day it’s gotta be the man. The heroine may not actually need him to save the day, but he’s there and he’s determined to make a point, to take a stand in her life.

So for you, Bellas, what’s your hero criteria, what are their traits (and who did you first see them in—movie star, book character, etc.) that just make your knees melt?

25 comments:

amy kennedy said...

"...something going on with his lips (and that was before I knew what exactly)"

I know! I can remember being drawn to guys, some, not even that cute, but they had something -- now I know it was sex appeal!

A.C., welcome -- I love your combo platters of heros. I have soooo many differing qualities that I admire. But right now, I'm all about the rugged good looks of Clive Owen and Daniel Craig. Although, the ridiculously beautiful leading man in the movie Obsession, does something for me too...

AC said...

Hi Amy,

Yeah, that's Idris Alba, he certainly is something to look at.

Rugged good looks and rough around the edges has a great appeal.

ac

bbutterflyreview said...

I like strong hero's that you can just see their strength by looking at them (Denzel, Idris, etc). A great provider and someone that really knows how to treat a lady. I first saw that in my dad, so I love to read about it in characters.

amy kennedy said...

Oh, that's right, Idris Alba...I guess I was being shallow, only commenting on looks.

bbutterfly, I like what you said about being able to see their strength just by looking at them -- and I know you weren't being shallow, like I was -- their strength of character.

I also love a hero with a sense of humor.

Tiffany said...

Hi A.C., loved Full House Seduction! I really like a hero that is going to be there for the heroine no matter what.

Tiffany

AC said...

My grandmother used to say that women looked for in a man what they saw first in their father's and vice versa with men. I have to admit that's true, my husband has alot of traits that I've loved forever in my father.

Hey Tiff! Thanks, I'm glad you enjoyed it. :)

Becke Davis said...

Do we call you A.C., or is that just your pen name? Well, either way, welcome -- what a great way to start the week!

I love your list of celebrity heroes -- isn't it interesting how many of us share the same ones even though, in real life, our significant others are rarely like our celloid heroes?

I'm a huge Tom Hanks fan -- he wins me over every time, even though, in books, I want the more rugged, motorcycle riding, dark and dangerous types. In real life, my husband and motorcycles? Not so much.

I'm a Nora Roberts fan, too, and I think she is great at writing heroes we can fall in love with -- that's definitely one of her strengths.

It's interesting to me, because romances always seem to be considered the heroine's story, but I'm equally invested in the hero. Sometimes, I like the hero even better than the heroine. As long as they get their happy ending, it's all good!

Kay said...

Hi A.C.,

I love a hero that has a bit of a rough edge to him but also has a gentleness to care for others. He exudes strength, love, and respect. Like Bbutterfly said, you can look at him and see those things and you know that he will take care of his own. You know that he has your back. He's just as comfortable in a suit in the boardroom as he is in jeans hanging out with his friends. A man that's comfortable with who he is.

~Jen said...

Did someone say Idris...gracious! LOL!

Here here Kay!

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

Wait a sec! There are heroines in romances? d'oh!

Buongiorno, Bellas,and welcome, AC! I love this post, because you'[ve found a new way to talk about the thing so many of us love best about romance -- the heroes. And you've asked us to consider what got us to the things that attract us about men, what was the genesis? love that.

I'm kind of misty, cause i really like what bbutterflyreview wrote: I first saw that in my dad, so I love to read about it in characters. and then you said what your grandmother told you. you guys are killin me!

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

k. I have to google idris cause i don't lift my head from my computer often enough to know who anyone is anymore.

but can I say this? I pulled today's title from AC's post because I love how she talks about heroes as men who have the courage to do the right thing in the 'stand up' sense of the phrase. Some boys have been giving my son a hard time at school cause he's kind of nerdy. And he said to me, "I know I'm not very masculine." Now, what do you say to your son when you hear that besides, 'show me where those boys live and I'll show them masculine.' But I said to him, 'let me tell you about masculine and what makes a man: Men honor their commitments. Men take care of their girlfriends and wives and children. Men respect women and their friends and are courageous, and when it counts, they take a stand."

Just like you say, AC. And it's no different for women, like you also say. Your heroines do the same thing, but the heroes have to live by the same code, or they're just not worthy.

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

oo, Kay and becke and Amy all vote for rough around the edges. I must admit I never saw the appeal until I was much older. Then I remembered my Harrison Ford crush from Star Wars and figured out I'd had the instinct way back when. But I'm kind of embarrassed to say I liked the small British guys when I was really young like Davy Jones from the Monkees.

And I always had the 'underdog' crush, too. What does that say about me?

Princess Bumblebee said...

Welcome, AC! We Bellas loves us some heroes, that's for sure!
Michelle, you are so right. It's not your muscles or your swagger that makes you cool (though it certainly helps) but honor and respect a true man would show!
Me, I love the brooding hero that is in total denial until the end when he, yes, sometimes literally, gets down on his knees and declares his love! Gotta love it!

AC said...

Awww, Michelle, you told your son correctly. It's not about the buff and toughness all the time. I like the quiet-smart-enough-to-know-he-doesn't-have-to-physically-win the woman type too.

OMG, how could you not love Harrison Ford in Star Wars, he was the coolest, next to Vader, of course.

Another one of my favorite heroes is Cary Grant in just about all his movies, but I really loved him in A Philadelphia Story because he was man enough to know and admit that he was wrong in his first marriage and to still go out on a limb to get his woman. Plus he's so damned cute!

AC said...

Hey Princess Bumblebee,

I was re-reading your post and again Harrison Ford came to mind---I really need to stop watching so much television, LOL.
Remember him in Sabrina, he was a jerk and an ignorant jerk at that, right up until the very end and then he was soooo sweeetttt "Please rescue me Sabrina Fare," awwww,
ok, I'm gonna be quiet now before I sigh too loud.
:)

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

I forgot about "Sabrina!" Oh, yeah, that was awesome!

The denial and on the knees thing is great, principessa. But, you know? I still want my romance hero a little rough in the end of the book. I don't want him all tamed and turned into a puppydog, no sir.

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

oh. So I just googled Idris Elba? And, um, I get it now.

I've gotta get out more.

Princess Bumblebee said...

LOl, ladies! Yes, loved him in Sabrina. My brother in L.A. works for a company that transports the stars by limos. He says Harrison Ford is really a nice guy and actually calls them for stuff, himself, instead of having an assistant call, hehe. And acts like he's interrupting them in the middle of surgery. What a guy! Gotta love him!

Suebhoney said...

My hero criteria?. Im partial to the dark, brooding types, rough around the edges but can be gentle and sweet, and knows exactly when to be what and where. And if he is in a uniform-then that is a bonus!!! I read Full House Seduction A.C. and loved it.

Becke Davis said...

When I was young I was all about the pretty boys, like Paul McCartney. Now I think George and John are/were a lot more interesting. And, Michelle, I loved the Monkees, too -- Peter and Mike were my faves, since Davy was too short. (My husband sat on a bus from the airport terminal to the car rental place once -- said he's a really nice guy.)

I'm definitely going to have to read this book. My kind of hero!

amy kennedy said...

Suebhoney, yes! on the whole uniform thing. There's just something about a man who has sworn to defend...

And Becke, me too, I use to love 'em pretty (still like to look at pretty) but I'd rather they weren't prettier than me! But now that I'm older, there's so many other things that interrest me -- oh, all right, I still like the muscles -- but it's the brain and the "code of honor" and making me laugh, all those things are so sexy.

I can't believe I didn't tell you about Idris ( we're on a first name basis, apparently) Michelle.

Princess Bumblebee said...

seubhoney and amy, I'm the exact opposite. They have to be handsome, but not in the pretty way. Like Jason Statham (whose voice can apparently wake me up, as my brother found out on my trip, hehe), Vin Diesel, the lead singer of Linkin Park, that guy on Star Trek, and Channing Tatum, who is ultra-hot in G.I. Joe. GRRR!...is it getting hot in here?

Suebhoney said...

Oh Princess, I am definitely with you on Vin Diesel, I purchased "The Pacifier" DVD because he was in it. But the "Fast and Furious" series, he was brooding, muscles rippling... you get the idea. LOL

orannia said...

HI AC *waves*

Hmmmm. Loyalty is important. So is honesty. And, I would also have to say making the heroine feel...good (physically and emotionally :) There are other qualities, but I can't put my finger on them at the moment.

All the best with the release!

Christina Wolfer said...

Sabrina is one of those movies you can watch over and over.

And I agree, I'm as much invested, if not more so, in the hero as I am the heroine. It's got a be a guy I could fall in love with.

I love it when the hero's vulnerability slips through when he's trying so hard to hide it.

Borderline bad guys with killer smiles.