Please welcome guest blogger J. Kenner, here to talk about her newest book! Please comment here to be eligible to win a copy of Release Me!
Sexy Men, Strong Heroines … and the good stuff between the covers…
I’m thrilled to be here at ARe Café as part of the blog tour leading up to the on-sale date of Release Me.
I’ve been working on the next two books in the series, Claim Me and Complete Me, and that’s had me pretty immersed in a smexy, steamy world (I know, my job is so hard, right????)
But here’s the thing: It’s not the sex or the heat or the intensity of the love scenes that make a book for me. Even a book that I’ve bought because I know it’s going to be a steamy, bone-melting kind of read.
Because at the end of the day, it’s not about the sex, it’s about the characters. And what I love are strong characters. Frankly, I think that the stronger the characters, the smexier the bedroom (or, you know, wherever) scenes.
The thing about flawed characters is that they are real. Single dimensional people don’t exist, and neither should single-dimensional characters. And multi-layered characters are so much easier for a reader to relate to than a character that feels cardboard.
Nikki, for example is a lot like me. Like Nikki, I’m goal oriented and tend to go after what I want. But while I’m strong in a lot of ways, I’m weak in others. I may not cut like Nikki does, but I battled anorexia in my youth. I understand her weakness and her fears. Everyone has fears. Everyone has secrets. Everyone has regrets. And that makes flawed characters relatable.
As a reader, one of my favorite strong-yet-flawed characters is Eve Dallas in J.D. Robb’s In Death series. (If you haven’t read this series, you are missing out. Trust me on that.) She’s almost like a candy—a hard shell on the outside, but sweet meltiness inside that shell. The other characters, however, have to work to get there.
That’s the kind of character I wanted to bring to life on the page with Nikki and Damien, and I’ve been thrilled by advance reviews show that readers are really getting these two. They’re seeing Nikki’s strength surrounding a core filled with some truly serious issues. And as for Damien, he’s so much more than a guy with a ton of money and great cars (and sexy as sin). He has a soft side—not to mention a soft spot for Nikki—and deep, dark problems of his own.
But they’re both strong enough to recognize their weaknesses and to come together despite them. And when there’s that much tinder ready to spark beneath the surface, you just know that when they get together it’s going to be explosive! (It is! I promise!)
How about you? Do you like flawed characters? Do you understand them? Identify with them? Root for them? Who is your favorite literary character? (Be sure to leave a comment to be entered in the giveaway!)
J. Kenner is the pen name of USA Today bestselling author Julie Kenner (who also writes as J.K. Beck). RELEASE ME, an erotic romance, will be available in the U.S. and the U.K. on January 1, and in over a dozen other countries later in 2013.
You can hang out with J.K., learn more about Release Me and her other novels, or just poke around and see what catches your eye at her website, www.jkenner.com, and also at her J. Kenner Facebook page, www.facebook.com/jkennerbooks and on Twitter atwww.twitter.com/juliekenner
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