Please join me in welcoming author Beth Williamson (also writing as Emma Lang) to the blog today as part of my Authors After Dark Spotlight series. She’s talking cowboys, badass men & redemption!
Lettie Brown has lived in the shadow of violence. After escaping her brutal past, she’s finally at home in Forestville, Wyoming, where she would live a normal life—if she knew how. She’s content working at The Blue Plate and printing the town newspaper, if not happy. Then a stranger stumbles into her world and turns everything upside down.
Shane Murphy is a shell of a man, destroyed by the aftermath of the war, his personal tragedies and a penchant for cheap whiskey. When he lands, literally, on Lettie’s feet, his future takes a hard right turn.
As they fumble through a relationship that should not have been, a deep love takes root, one that cannot be denied. Together they discover a bond as unbreakable as steel and as undeniable as life itself—until the past rears its ugly head and threatens the happiness they’ve found in each other. Amazon: Endless Heart
Thank you for stopping by For What It’s Worth today Beth!
What ís so good about being the guy in the White Hat?
As a western romance writer, I have all sorts of heroes in hats, the cowboy kind that is. Not all of them are honorable men though. *gasp* Yes, it's true, sometimes my heroes don't where the white hat.
I am very much the kind of writer who tries to stay true to real life. I've had heroines who are homeless, disabled, bitchy and even scarred physically. I've had heroes who are drunks, suffer from PTSD, or missing a limb. Yes, the book is an escape from reality but in order to identify with the hero/heroine, I feel like they have to feel real to me, and consequently, to the reader.
So my heroes can also be bad guys, who find their way to a good place with the love of a heroine. I've had heroes who are truly badasses, men you would not want courting your daughter.
The first was Hermano, who made an appearance in my first book, The Bounty. In the first scene, Hermano was torturing the hero, Tyler Calhoun, to give him information. Nice guy, eh? He pops up throughout the book, and the next, The Prize, dancing in the shadows in the periphery.
Well, what happened next was Hermano kept whispering in my ear while I slept, telling me he needed his own story, por favor. I couldn't resist the pull of such a dark, sexy man, one who valued loyalty but would kill in a blink if need be.
Thus, my third book, The Reward, became Hermano's story. He was Malcolm Ross y Zarza, a half-scottish, half-mexican man with a past of his own, one that thrust him into the role of a bandito.
He's unapologetic for his actions and his choices - one of the things I love about him. He's real, y'know?
The second hero with a gun and a dark soul is also from the Malloy family books, Kincaid. Oh, Kincaid, how I love thee. He first appeared in book five, The Gift, as a man hired to kill the heroine, Adelaide. Somewhere along the way he became friends with Brett Malloy, the most reticent and quietest of the brothers. So when Brett's story, The Tribute, was published, Kincaid played a major role. He found a friend in Brett that he'd not found before. At the end of The Tribute, Kincaid disappears only to resurface in his own book, Hell for Leather.
A man who survived a wickedly awful childhood, Kincaid tries to start over, to emulate the man he wants to be like his friend Brett. He finds a place to be, and a new name, Cade Brody, and tries to keep his dark past buried beneath the roots of a pine tree. It takes a strong woman, Sabrina, to force him to confront that blackness and find the love he deserves.
My third serious badass hero is Grady Wolfe from Ruthless Heart, my first book published as Emma Lang. Grady is the penultimate bad guy - who will take any and all jobs for money. He'd been an assassin since he was fifteen, darkest of dark. It takes a scientific, brainy heroine like Eliza Hunter to smash through the castle of hell he lives in, and find the man he could be.
My next release has another hero who is a badass, and this time is a Texas Ranger. Brody Armstrong first appeared in the Circle Eight: Matthew as the investigator for the crimes committed against the Graham family. Black hair, ice blue eyes and an attitude to match, Brody was a mysterious force who needed to return for his own story, The Circle Eight: Brody. He wears a black hat and is hard as the land he protects. Fortunately for him, Olivia Graham is just as tough and stubborn as Brody. Clash of the Titans, y'all. :)
Brody lost his brothers, survived the war, and joined the Rangers to do something with his life. He has a lonely existence, relying only on himself, on the trail and constantly in danger. When he meets the Grahams, the family knocks some longing into him. Then Olivia knocks him on his ass. In the end, Brody finds what he didn't know he was missing. The love of a woman and a future with a family he needed.
Who doesn't like a dark, tortured hero? Each of these men personified what I want to see happen to all badass men, redemption. I find the bad heroes are the ones who steal my heart, especially those in the black hat riding a horse. ;)
About Beth: Beth Williamson, who also writes as Emma Lang, is an award-winning, bestselling author of both historical and contemporary romances. Her books range from sensual to scorching hot. She is a Career Achievement Award Nominee in Erotic Romance by Romantic Times Magazine, in both 2009 and 2010. website | Twitter | facebook | goodreads