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Thursday, July 30, 2009

The Notorious Rake

The notorious rake, rakehell, rogue, reprobate, scoundrel and altogether wicked man. Whatever you want to call him, he has a place in romance. Usually one to make the wicked rake into my hero, my recent release, LOVE WILL BLOOM, is just a little different.

I thought, what if this time, that sinful man who looks at the heroine with bedroom eyes, doesn’t win? What if the more innocent, socially blundering, friendly, yet oh-so-handsome man gets the girl? Enter my hero Dominick Wade… gloriously good looking, a body you want to fall to your knees and crawl after, and still just as arrogant, but with a boyish and crooked grin that makes you shove aside his faults. He’s everything a woman could want, and best of all, he doesn’t have a reputation for seducing and scandalizing young women.

His biggest fault? He’s a world traveling, treasure hunting maniac, with little acceptance of social norms, who has no interest in finding a mate… until, he meets Lillian. Then all bets are off. Only thing is, the devilishly erotic rakehell Sir Trenton also has his eyes on Lillian, and she melts into a quivering heap whenever he comes around.

What’s a girl to do? Ah, decisions, decisions.

What exactly is a rake? He is a man who habitually steeps himself in immoral acts…scandalous behavior. He seduces women, sleeps with more than you can count, and is usually pretty good at it. A frequent flyer of nefarious clubs, a gambler, loves to imbibe in liquor and wine… He may even be connected with stealing the virginity of young maidens and leaving a slew of bastards in his wake.

The rakehell is seen as witty, carefree and oozing sexuality. Young women blush when he looks their way and mothers shove young daughters behind their skirts when he passes.

The term rakehell, according to folk etymology, means someone who stokes the fires of hell making them even hotter than they were before, and believe me, if the man can make you blush or run away guarding your nether parts, I’d say he’s definitely making things hotter! Etymology says the word comes from Old Norse, reikall meaning wanderer, unsettled, or from Middle English rakel, meaning rash, rough, course, hasty. The dictionary says he’s licentious, or sexually unrestrained, lascivious, lewd, goes beyond the bounds of what is proper and moral.

But underneath all that naughtiness, we tend to give our licentious heroes some good qualities, don’t we?

In LOVE WILL BLOOM, the rake Sir Trenton is pretty much all wicked, although he is very talented musically, and he is a substantial patron of the musical arts. I had to give him some good qualities :) And you know what? Even our good boy, sexy hero, Dominick ends up finding a little bit of his naughty side.

What type of hero do you like?


After the death of her parents, Miss Lillian Whitmore travels to London to live with her aunt and uncle, the Duke and Duchess of Suffolk. Sick with grief, guilt and loneliness, and shunned by her aunt and cousins, Lillian is constantly reminded of her ignorance of society customs. Forced to find a husband, she encounters two men who vie for her affections--handsome, poised Lord Dominick Wade and the sensuous rake, Sir Trenton--but the skeletons in Lillian's closet keep her from making a choice.

Expectations are high for Lord Dominick Wade to marry a woman of social stature, but the American beauty has literally wreaked havoc with his senses. Lillian is everything Dominick wants in a companion, lover and wife. Even more rankling is his competition, Sir Trenton, and the influence he holds over her.

Fate will decide this season which love will wither…and which will bloom

View the book trailer and read an excerpt!

Cheers and Enjoy!


Nicole North said...

Congratulations on the release, Eliza! Great post! I love to write the wicked rake from time to time, but also other types of heroes for variety. I like for men of different types to be friends or brothers so readers can see the contrast and conflict. And they also give me more hero material when I do a series or spinoffs. :)

Sarah Simas said...

Hi Eliza!

Loved the post! I like how you made the good guy get the gal in LOVE WILL BLOOM. That's too cool!

I'm usually drawn to the rakehell or the stodgy lord needing a good laugh. Johanna Lindsay's Mallory Brothers are some of my favorite heroes.

Pat McDermott said...

Entertaining post, Eliza. Nothing is more boring that a goody-two-shoes hero. I like the heroes who have the good angel on one shoulder and the bad angel on the other. Congratulations and best of luck with your new release!

Susan Macatee said...

Congrats on your new release, Eliza!

It's hard for me to choose. I've read romances with rake's, rakehell's and upstanding, quiet heroes and I have to admit, I love them all.

Most of the heroes I write are somewhere in between. The hero of my current WIP, a real scoundrel, was reformed by his experiences in the Civil War and the love of the heroine, of course, but now in the post-Civil War sequel, he's reverted to his former rakish ways, but never completely forgot the heroine and hopes to find a way win her back, despite himself.

Donna said...

Ah-h, Eliza, they're nearly all wonderful. I still like the handsome honorable guy best. LOVE Mr. Darcy! I love Rupert Penry-Jones kiss at the end of the 2008 version of Persuasion--it's one of the best yet! Just keep 'em coming!

Eliza Knight said...

Thanks Nicole! So true about the heroes and seeing their contrasts and developing more characters for other stories.

Thank you Sarah!

Thanks Pat! I love the good angel/devil on the shoulder idea :)

Thank you Susan! Isn't it fun to develop all sorts? Good luck with your current wip, it sounds awesome!

Thanks Donna! I'm a sucker for Mr. Darcy too :)

Gwynlyn MacKenzie said...

The wilder the rake, the more satisfying is his fall into love. He's "impossible", she changes that, and in the bargain, gets an adventurous and knowledgeable bed partner. Not a bad deal.

Eliza Knight said...

So true Gwynlyn! Thank you!

Margaret Tanner said...

Hi Eliza,
Congratulations on your new release. Ooh yes, I love reading about rakes, but I wouldn't want to be involved with one, unless it was in my dreams.

Virginia said...

Congrats on your new release! This books sounds like an awesome read and I would love to read it.


Danni said...

Congrats on the release! An very entertaining post. :)

Victoria Gray said...

Great post...I'm plotting a new book with a rake as a hero, so I'll be picking your brains soon!

Congrats on the new release : )