Thank you so much for inviting me to be a guest today. I'm very excited to be here and share the news about my newest ebook release His Reluctant Bodyguard.
This book was a new experience for me in several areas. First of all, it is the second book in my Adventure Cruise Line series. I have never written a series before, but when I was writing my previous book High Seas Deception, my heroine's best friend and roommate, Avery Knox was such a fun character that I couldn't resist giving her a story of her own. So even though the two books are stand alone stories that can be read in any order, His Reluctant Bodyguard is also set in the world of my fictional cruise line.
Second, His Reluctant Bodyguard is a reunion story, and I've never written one of those either. Avery and her hero, Rip Pollendene have a history. They met ten years before this story starts when they were both in college and both recovering from knee injuries. They never acted on their feelings of attraction back then, but of course they never forgot each other. Now that they've met again, circumstances seem determined to tear them apart.
Finally, Rip Pollendene was a completely different hero for me to write because he doesn't have one drop of Irish blood! He is an intriguing mixture of French, African, and native Carib heritage. But I hope you will agree that he is also very "swoon worthy." Here are my top seven things that put him in the "swoon worthy" category for me:
1. He has a great sense of humor. (This is my number one trait for heroes in real-life as well as fiction.) Rip is quick to make an off-hand remark or see the humor in a situation. When he learns that he and his companion must use the assumed names of John Smith and James Brown, he quips, "You can go chasing after Pocahantas, I'll be the godfather of soul."
2. He has a dazzling smile that gleams extra bright against his bronze complexion -- think of Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson's smile (I did when I created Rip) and you'll know what I mean! Avery remembers Rip's smile even after ten years. At one point, she asks him if his smile always gets what he wants, and he answers, "Pretty much." Which leads very nicely to the next swoon worthy trait...
3. He is confident and tenacious. Every time Avery turns him down, he tries again. He even boldly tells her he is not giving up on a future with her. When his companion Williams says too bad Avery rejected him yet again, Rip confidently says, "I'll change her mind." Gotta love a guy with that kind of determination!
4. He is loyal. If you are his friend, he will do everything he can to help you. Even if you aren't a real "friend" he won't abandon you. Rip and Williams have a rather adversarial relationship. But when they are both imprisoned and Rip is rescued, he makes his friends go back for Williams.
5. A former NFL player, he is no couch potato, so he's very nice to look at. When Rip appears in swimming trunks, every woman at the pool, including Avery, takes notice. He exercises to relieve stress and has been known to take three or four cold showers in a single day.
6. You can always wear heels with him because at 6 feet 4, he will be taller than just about everyone. Even at 5 feet 10 in her bare feet, Avery doesn't look down on him in her highest heels.
7. He will never have a better hair day than you! Back in the day (KOFF*the 80s*KOFF), I swore I would never date a man who used more hair care products than I did. It is a vow that has served me well, though I would never have predicted the current trend toward shaved heads. It's a look not every man can successfully wear. However, in Rip's case bald is definitely beautiful.
So there you have my top seven reasons to swoon over my hero. I'm sure when you read His Reluctant Bodyguard, you'll discover a few more of your own. I'll be giving away a free download (Kindle or Nook, winner's choice) of His Reluctant Bodyguard to one randomly selected commenter. I'll also enter every commenter's name in a drawing for a $20 gift card to be awarded at the end of my blog tour (Dec. 5th).
Thanks again for having me here at Long & Short Reviews! Please tell me what trait makes a hero "swoon worthy" for you?
About the Author:
A long-time reader of romances, Cindy discovered and joined Romance Writers of America in 2001. But her stressful career as the manager of a multi-million dollar State and Federally funded program prevented her from doing much writing or traveling. She still managed to squeeze in a little of both, but not enough of either to be truly satisfying. Finally, at the end of 2003 she decided to take an early retirement from her career to fully pursue her twin passions of travel and writing.
On Sept. 14, 2007 Cindy received “the call” from an editor that changed her life, and she sold her first book (actually the third book she’d written since she left her job four years earlier). The Wild Sight was released Oct. 2008 and received a rare and coveted starred review from Publishers Weekly magazine. It also went on to win the “Best First Book” category in the More Than Magic contest. In 2010, the electronic version of Wild Sight became an Amazon bestseller in their Top 100 of all books.
In Sept. 2009, her second published novel, The Treasures of Venice, was released. This story previously finaled in the prestigious Golden Heart contest in 2006 under the title Jewels of the Madonna. Treasures of Venice went on to win the Judge a Book By Its Cover contest and to final in several other regional contests.
In July 2010 her third traditionally published novel, The Wild Irish Sea was released, and received a four star review from Romantic Times Book Review magazine.
Cindy likes to set her novels of romance and suspense in some of the fascinating places she has visited. To date, she has visited 47 states and 32 foreign countries.
The last person cruise director Avery Knox expected to see aboard her very first trip out on Valiant is former college football star, Rip Pollendene. A decade ago, she had turned down his advances at the University of Miami and lived to regret her decision. Why is she so reluctant to take the second chance she’s been handed?Buy the book at Amazon or Barnes & Noble
Rip Pollendene is the heir apparent to a beautiful island nation. But it’s a heritage Rip has ignored and rejected for twenty years. Now his homeland is on the brink of a bloody civil war with outside forces trying to manipulate the outcome. Is that why someone wants him dead?
How much should Rip sacrifice for a country he hardly knows? And is it sheer coincidence that has thrown golden girl Avery Knox back into his life? Can they stay alive long enough to find out if their love really is meant to be?