Top 13 Hottest Heroes from My Novels - by Nhys Glover
I have written thirty odd novels, some with multiple heroes. In my mind, each hero is a real person and some I liked; others I loved; and a few I adored.
Trying to work out why you love one person over another, real or imagined, is not always easy. But there is often a turning point when the growing interest in someone shifts to something more. I'm going to try to describe that something more as I go down my list.
The top two places go to the heroes of The Barbarian's Mistress, a Historical Romantic Adventure set in Ancient Rome that gained me Amazon Best Seller status on its release, and still remains my favourite book.
1) Vali is the principal hero, a Norse barbarian slave of Roman masters, a sex-slave to rich matrons who like a bit of danger and brutality mixed with their sexual encounters.
I have listed three sexually abused heroes in my Top 13, I was interested to observe. All of them are filled with rage from their abuse. All need healing. And each gets it through love. In Vali's case, his desire to protect the victimized daughter of the household makes him a true hero to me. His sense of decency and desire to protect her, even from himself, makes him special. Being tall, blonde and brilliant doesn't hurt either.
2) Braxus, the secondary hero, was captured as a child by pirates. Raped by many of those pirates over a long period of time, because he's a pretty boy, he carves up his own face in an effort to end the abuse. It doesn't work. But once he's big enough to fight off his attackers he ends up as a gladiator in the arena and wins his freedom – not an easy feat. He becomes a mercenary, and is hunting down the girl Vali is protecting when he enters the story.
Brax is a very cynical, harsh man, with no purpose in his life beyond his job and hedonistic pleasures. His vulnerabilities only show up when he is rescued from death by a young woman, the handmaiden to the girl he is hunting, and he aligns himself with her purpose. Brax is clueless when it comes to women, I liked that about him, but he won my heart during the scene where, drunk on the accolades of others after his success in the arena, he thinks that this his only value. That his violent skills are what might win him the girl he's coming to love. It is a touching scene, and his sweet naivety is at odds with the man he's shown himself to be, up to that point.
3) Bart entered the New Atlantis series as a Jewish child who tried to help other children on the Death Train heading for Belzac Concentration Camp during WW II. His irrepressible personality and big heart made him a favourite character throughout the series, especially during the rescue of the children on the doomed Titanic. I always planned to give him his love interest when he 'grew up', but when he hijacked The Key to claim Cat, I was both shocked and amused. It was so in character for him to do something like that. And, I rationalised, he might not be very old chronologically, but he was old beyond his years in experience. My affection for Bart meant he continued to pop up in most of the books in the series and was just about to become a father when the series ended.
4) Luke is an ex-US marine in the New Atlantis novel Savage. It is his playfulness and politically incorrect attitudes that make him so endearing. He and his 'Angel' adopt Bart, who is often called his Mini Me because they are more alike than most biological fathers and sons. I loved watching Luke grow as a person through the series, confronting and adjusting his world view as he experienced other ways of living. To me he's just plain adorably sexy.
5) Nexus, big, black and beautiful, was a secondary character in Liquid Fire, the first of my Roman historical romances, who ended up stealing the hero's limelight because he was just so strong, intelligent and in control. Although he is a slave, he's every bit the alpha male of the book, and the scene where the heroine gives herself to him in the gladiator's cells is one of the hottest I have ever written. The fact that they come together for all the wrong reasons doesn't distract from the heat and love in the scene.
Nexus needed his own book, and I wanted to strip a little of his control away from him, to see what was beneath. So he got Lionslayer's Woman, where he redeems himself in his own eyes by doing what he does best, saving the innocent.
6) Will is the Scottish werewolf enforcer in the Werewolf Keep Trilogy. His gruffness is his appeal. If he'd read the book, How to Win Friends and Influence People, he would have thrown away the winning friends part and just used brute force to do his influencing. Yet his adoration of fragile Lily, and his gentleness when dealing with her, makes him special in my eyes.
7) Hawk is a Polish WWII fighter pilot whose ghost haunts an English Farmhouse in The Way Home. I can't even put my finger on what it is about Hawk that I love – his humility, his seriousness, his willingness to defy even death for the woman he loves. Or maybe it's that sexy accent of his. Watch the trailer to see what I mean.
8) Allyn, the Celt, is the third of my sexually abused slaves from my Roman novels. And possibly the most damaged. He is an anti-hero, in a way, as in the Romance genre the hero doesn't usually rape the heroine. Or anyone else for that matter. But Allyn, another violent sex-slave, is tricked into attacking the innocent heroine, and then has to come to terms with his guilt. For all his astonishing good looks, he is such a damaged, sensitive soul that he pales in comparison to the larger than life Nexus, in Liquid Fire. He's just a man who is willing to address his own issues to save the woman he loves from hers. But to me that is true heroism.
9) Colton is the hero of the first of the Scorpio Sons series. He's one of a hundred genetically engineered shifter clones. Broody and distant, he lived alone on the streets from the age of seven, dealing out vigilante justice as he saw fit. That was until he was found by the Sons and discovers he had a place in the world. Like other of my favourite heroes, the fact that his default programming is to protect others weaker than himself no matter how harsh his own life experiences gives him a special place in my heart.
10) Caleb is the IT geek of the Scorpio Sons but he's also a rebel with a dark, guilty secret. I love the way he is willing to confront that guilt and heal it, with the help of his mate. And that he overcame his red-neck trailer-trash background got brownie points with me, too.
11) Karl was a minor character in the early books in the New Atlantis series but got the limelight and the girl in The Titan Downs. He's the medical researcher who is always the wise, patient and gentle healer everyone turns to for advice and comfort. He's more friend than sexy hero, but I think that's why I like him so much. Always comfortable in his own skin, except when he finds Lizzie, he doesn't want to be the hero, just the guy behind the scenes. And the real woman in me would probably choose this real man over the larger than life heroes of the imagined worlds, had she the choice.
12) Travis is an ex-con convicted of a murder he didn't commit. He has a chip on his shoulder the size of a brick, but has used his time inside wisely, getting an education. Creating a cyberworld on Second Life that replicates New Atlantis gets the attention of the Retrievers from that future world. What appeals to me about Travis is his beauty. When he creates his artwork using music and dance, like a conductor of colour, I can see it clearly in my mind. Call me superficial, but someone who drags himself out of the gutter to create awe-inspiring beauty is worth putting on my Top 13.
13) Lucky 13! Cameron is another of the Scorpio Sons and his arrogant superiority and lack of emotion make him the kind of bad boy everyone seems to like. He's just so cold and cutting that you can't help but want to see him fall on his face, which he does in a very satisfying way when he meets his mate.
For more about Nhys and her books, click here.