posted by Christine Wells
Today I'm delighted to welcome back to the lair one of our favourite friends, Denise Rossetti, who is here to talk about hot blonds and her fabulous hot fantasy romance, THIEF OF LIGHT.
Quick! Close you eyes and picture your favourite cabana boy! Okay, what colour is his hair?
There you go. Bet you said black or brown, or maybe bald and shiny if you’re a Bruce Willis groupie.
It’s the strangest thing, Romancelandia is crowded with Tall, Dark and Handsome – with the emphasis on dark. Think of all those dangerous dukes, broody vampires and buff bodyguards and I bet you’re seeing dark locks. Yes, I know there are blond heroes, but they don’t spring to mind as readily as the brunets. (Of course, Sven is the exception.)
My heroes are almost always dark, a few are gray at the temples. But even if they’re fair-ish, there’s always a hefty dollop of red - that beautiful dark red, not carrots. *sigh*
On the other hand, I have to say some men are positively improved by going all blond and flowing. Take Orlando Bloom for instance. (Form an orderly queue to the left and no pushing.) Legolas is a real knee-trembler in my opinion. I much preferred him to Will Turner from Pirates of the Caribbean. Unless it’s the pointy ears… Hmm…
Jason Isaacs is wonderful whatever he does, but there’s just something about Lucius Malfoy. He’s so cold and nasty, he’s actually hot. And those white-blond locks just make the character.
But the heroes in my books? Nope, no blonds. Nu-uh, don’t do ‘em. So when Erik Thorensen turned up inside my head and refused to leave, I was more than a little bemused. What’s more, he folded those big arms across his gorgeous chest, fixed me with a searing blue gaze and informed me he had Viking ancestors, waaaay back in the family tree. Just deal with it, woman.Uh, okay. Erik can be extraordinarily, magically persuasive. It’s that deep, beguiling voice.
What do you think? James Griffin, the cover artist, did his usual fabulous job of plucking the character right out of my head. By the way, if you’re interested in how he does it, he explains his artistic process step-by-step in an interview on my blog. I love the way Erik strides toward you out of the picture. Typical of the man.
This is Prue's (our heroine) first sight of Erik. The beard, by the way, is part of a stage costume. It comes off. So does the rest, eventually. *snork*
When the lights came up for intermission, she was still trembling on a deep, visceral level that dismayed her more than anything had in years. Erik Thorensen had come striding out of fire and brimstone and clasped the shrinking heroine to his chest. And yes, he was a marvelous-looking man, his hair loose on his shoulders like dark-spun gold under the stage lights, the neatly trimmed goatee a shade darker. His eyes were such a vivid blue they pierced Prue all the way to her soft, silly soul. He was big too—so big only the athleticism of his tall muscular frame prevented him from looking blocky. Gods, exactly the physical type she preferred, right down to the mischievous glint in his eye.
But Prue had spent almost two decades surrounded by the most beautiful people on the world of Palimpsest. She was accustomed to perfection, even to the delightful frisson of sexual dominance Erik projected so effortlessly. He was a fine actor.
But merciful Sister, that voice!
He’d glanced directly at their box and his face had lit up with a grin that had pure devil in it. Then he’d opened his mouth. From the first effortless bar, her foolish heart had tumbled into his keeping. Every note was round, rich, deeply masculine, filling the auditorium as if supported on smooth columns of air. Utterly enthralled, Prue had found herself leaning forward, her mouth hanging open, trying to breathe him in, keep him forever, hers alone. She felt feverish, tingling, her breasts tight and her sex swollen and slippery, as if he were stroking her naked body with velvet.
Even worse, the costume, in an old-fashioned style still worn only by the oligarchs on Green IV, suited him to perfection. A pair of over-the-knee boots emphasized the power of thighs and buttocks encased in tight cream breeches. Prue’s mouth watered.
Thief of Light is the second in the Four-Sided Pentacle series, following The Flame and the Shadow. Here’s a little more about the book.
In the elegant, subtropical city of Caracole, Erik the Golden is widely known as irresistible; his Voice an instrument of incredible pleasure, the stroke of velvet on bare skin. But the Voice is a curse as much as a blessing, for once Erik used it to steal a soul, and now he must pay.
Prue is the business manager for the beautiful courtesans of the Garden of Nocturnal Delights. She deals in numbers, not Magick, and when Erik turns his charms in her direction, she sees only a performer’s vanity. How is it she can resist what others can't? She's either a torment devised by the gods to drive him mad—or Erik's last hope of salvation.
Some desires are impossible to resist...
Read the first chapter.
Coming 3rd November, 2009.
And you know what? I don’t care if I’m shallow about hair. What’s the point of having a fantasy if it’s not exactly the way you want it?
So tell me, do a hero’s locks matter to you at all? Colour? Length? More to the point, can you work out why? Did you imprint on your first love’s hair, like a gosling? I know one reader who mentally converts all the blonds to brunets because she simply can’t visualize a golden-haired hero.
I’m delighted to offer a signed copy of either The Flame and the Shadow or Thief of Light to one commenter. Bring on the Hair Wars!