Barbara Samuel can do it all—contemporary romance, historical romance, single title, category, series, standalone and even women’s fiction. Whether she’s writing as Barbara Samuel, Ruth Wind, or Barbara O’Neal, every book brings a heroine who goes through the fire and comes out stronger for it, and the same goes for the heroes who love them. Not convinced that a women’s fiction hero can hold his own alongside his romance counterparts? Try a few of these gents on for size:
Hero: Zeke Shepherd
Book: Breaking the Rules by Ruth Wind, category romance
What woman can resist a motorcycle-riding bad boy who’s a natural with babies? Zeke’s been burned before, but the loss of his soulmate horse stings more than that of the woman who done him wrong. Is it any surprise that this man won’t back down from a challenge in life or in love? While he pursues heroine Mattie, aka Mary, with dogged determination, he also knows there are some things a woman has to do for herself. Bonus points for building his own sweat lodge for pursuing inner peace and sexytimes.
Hero: Julian Liswood
Book: The Lost Recipe For Happiness by Barbara O’Neal, women’s fiction
A horror movie wunderkind with a heart of gold and a taste for fine dining, Julian brings romance hero swagger to the world of women’s fiction. This dedicated single dad of a troubled teenager knows that the true horror is the death of love, and yearns to finesse his storytelling mojo, but not if it would hurt the resilient chef who has won his heart. Julian offers heroine Elena shelter in his palatial home when she has none, and even names his latest restaurant after her irresistible dog. Kiss the cook? Oh yes, he most certainly does, well, and often.
Hero: Lucien Harrow
Book: Lucien’s Fall by Barbara Samuel, historical romance
What happens to a musical child prodigy when he’s all grown up? If he’s Lucien, it’s a whole mess of angst, his music driven so deep within him that it might tear him to shreds if he lets it out again. Lucien doesn’t only hear music, he sees it in shapes and colors that threaten to drive him mad…or perhaps madder. This bad boy former rock star of the Georgian age could be heroine Madeline’s ruin as well as her rescue, and if she can find the key to unlock the genius buried beneath the traumas of the past, she can help him make beautiful music in more ways than one.
Hero: Thomas Coyote
Book: A Piece of Heaven by Barbara Samuel, women’s fiction
If you never thought a hero with a bit of a belly could be your book boyfriend, you’ve never met Thomas Coyote. Thomas loves ice cream like he loves everything else in his life, with deep and abiding passion. He takes in his beloved grandmother when her house burns down, does everything he can and then some to keep an ex-con buddy on the straight and narrow, and while his desire for heroine Luna rages strong, he’s also determined to be a considerate partner in her sobriety. As for heartache? Thomas’s ex-wife left him for his brother, and turns back to Thomas when her new marriage goes south, exactly when Thomas’s love for Luna could send him over the moon.
Hero: Solomon ben Jacob
Book: A Bed of Spices by Barbara Samuel, historical romance
Medical student Solomon is a man of science and a man of faith, so when Jewish Solomon finds his soulmate in Rica, a Christian woman who keeps a dangerous secret, he knows their love could rock both of their worlds. Solomon is a man who weighs his options seriously, isn’t afraid to sacrifice for the greater good, and cherishes his family, even when they aren’t on the best of terms. He’s learned, poetic, and passionate in body and soul. The perfect medieval hero? Might be.
Hero: Blue Reynard
Book: In the Midnight Rain by Ruth Wind, women’s fiction
Dr. Laurence Reynard takes his nickname from the music he loves, and that music oozes out of him, perfuming the air around him with the slow, sweet drug of desire. Okay, maybe that perfume comes from the hothouse orchids he cultivates, which is only one of the many layers of fascination in this Bourbon-tongued bad boy. Part southern gentleman, part internet curmudgeon, he tangles with biographer heroine Ellie, unwilling to give too much away, yet determined to win her, heart, mind, body and soul. He’ll leave readers with a smile, for while he’ll share his story for a spell, he’s Ellie’s man, through and through.
Whether romance is the main course or a delicious side dish to the heroine’s journey, Barbara Samuel's heroes belong to a special brotherhood: real heroes who make mistakes, wrestle with hard questions, and are, ultimately, strong enough to stand beside a strong and determined woman and love her exactly the way she is.
Which Samuel hero has won your heart?
Anna C. Bowling considers writing historical romance the best way to travel through time and make the voices in her head pay rent. She welcomes visitors to her blog, Typing with Wet Nails and to follow her at Twitter.