Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Guest Blogger: Jennifer Lewis!

Today's guest is the very Desirable Jennifer Lewis! Not only is she talking about one of my favorite subjects (alpha men!), she's giving away a signed copy of Seduced For The Inheritance. Just leave a comment on this post to enter the draw (winner will be announced in the comments).

Naldo de Leon is the most arrogant hero I’ve ever written. Since his book Seduced for the Inheritance is out this month, I’ve been thinking a lot about alpha males, and when Nalini asked me to guest blog, I thought it would be a fun subject to tackle.

(Anyone who’s read Nalini’s books knows she’s an expert in alpha males :::Jen fans self::: )

Love ‘em or hate ‘em, alpha males have been around since the beginning of time and in romance novels they’ve dominated the genre since it began. In real life, a gentle, considerate Beta man who always wants to do what you like might seem appealing, but in romance?? Not so much. Though sometimes you may want to slap them, there’s something about an alpha male that calls to us at a primal level.

What is the appeal of the alpha male?

I think it can be summed up in one word: Confidence.

The alpha male knows he’s right. He doesn’t have any doubts. If he sets out to do something, he’s sure he’ll achieve it.

Of course this can be incredibly annoying, as my heroine Anna discovers when she inherits a small cottage and one acre of land in the middle of Naldo’s vast citrus estate. Naldo is determined to buy it back and keep his estate whole—as it has been since his conquistador ancestors first set foot there—regardless of what Anna wants.

Then again, there’s an appealing side to this confidence. Do you want to hang around with a guy who says, “Uh, honey, I think I can snag a rabbit or two, but why don’t you collect some berries anyway…’kay?” Or the one who says, “I’ll be back soon with the buffalo! Keep the fire hot!!”

I know which one I’d want to depend on in a crisis :)

This self-confidence can make it hard for alpha males to see alternative points of view (or reason, depending on how you look at it…). But when they do start to listen to the heroine, or to show their soft side, I find that very moving. An alpha male might never come out and say “I was wrong”, but I had fun with Naldo showing his gradual awaking to Anna’s point of view in how he confesses things he’d rather keep secret, and in how he defends her—and his relationship with her—to others.

Ultimately Naldo finds he’s met his match in Anna. I’ll be discussing her—and other strong, proud, unsinkable women—in a guest blog I’m doing tomorrow on ‘alpha females’ over at the Fresh Fiction Blog

Do you like alpha males or do you prefer a more accommodating and easy-going male in your romance novels? What alpha traits do you like or dislike? Who is your favorite alpha male? Which one would you most like to spank???

Thanks Nalini for letting me stop by!

Jen
http://www.jenlewis.com



29 comments :

Crystal Adkins said...

HI Jennifer! Great blog! LOL alpha males have been around since the beginning of time and will be around forever more. But we do need them sometimes :)
SO good to meet you! Love and hugs, Crystal
www.bookreviewsbycrystal.blogspot.com

tetewa said...

Hello Jennifer, glad to see you here today! You are a new author for me and your new release sounds like my kind of read, I love the alpha male.

dobby said...

Hi! Alpha hero's are great to read about but, I think, there has to be a line. In too many books they cross the line into ass*ole territory, and I've often wished the heroine would tell him to take a hike!

I think Nalini has got a good balance in her changeling series. They are alpha without being stupid know-it-all jerks.

Laura Elliott said...

I think the alpha hero has been pushed too far. Lately, I've found them to be bossy, arrogant jerks. Yeah, a confident personality is a must have but who said a nice guy can't be confident?

It drives me nuts when the alpha barks orders at the heroine. "Stay in the car." or "Don't even think of going over there." It especially drives me crazy when they do it in bed. "Suck this", "Ride this". I keep waiting for the heroine to flip him off and go find a better man.

If you define the alpha hero as confident, a little arrogant, but it adds to his sexiness - then I agree. That definitely works. If you define him as a bossy, I'm in charge, what-you-want-doesn't-matter kind of idiot...those heros get a little tired.

Tracy said...

Hi Jennifer! I love alpha males but agree that there is a line that can be crossed. I want them confident, but not asses! :) I don't think I have a favorite but I could spank Lucas, Vaughn or any of men in Karen Marie Moning's Highlander series quite easily! Yum!

Cherie J said...

I love alpha male heroes. Nalini's are especially great!

orannia said...

*orannia hands Jennifer a fan*

YUP, I need a fan when reading about the Changling males too *grin* I don't think I'd want to spank Dorian per say...'play'...definitely yes :)

As for the alpha male question...confidence I like but a male that is dictatorial I do not. I think alpha males can still be alpha and understand (and respect) another point of view. That's what I like so much about the Changelings Nalini :)

orannia

Anonymous said...

Ohhhh, more Alpha Male goodness. As long as you phenomonal authors keep writin' about em, I'll keep reading....and dreaming about them, and that's always a pleasant thought.

Jaded Bee

Christina said...

alpha's are always great. There is a line, but I think it also depends on the heroine to keep the male from crossing it. Nalini's men are just yummy! (I would also take Kresley Cole's IAD men, or Karen Marie Monings. Who could say no? ^_^)

Jennifer Lewis said...

Wow, so many comments already! Thanks for stopping by :) Alpha males, especially the more intense ones, definitely aren't everyone's cup of tea. For me there are certain key elements that I require--they absolutely must be a gentleman! I can't stand rudeness. That is usually the point where an alpha can become a jerk for me. And respect is important too. For example if the hero is a boss and the heroine is his female assistant, he'd better be a fantastic boss who treats her fairly or I'd be gnashing my teeth and thinking about lawsuits. It's fun to see the things different writers do with alpha males to make them demanding and insistent and still adorable.

Jen

Allison said...

An alpha hero is just that much more attractive when he show his vulnerabilites once in a while. Ones that come to mind are Lucas, Vaughn and Judd... mmm... delicious! And I'm always on the lookout for more and the heroines that deserve them (and vice versa).

Robyn Grady said...

Hey Jenn!

Great topic. I don't think there's anything sexier than a gorgeous alpha who knows what he wants, knows how to get it, but has a conscience that gets in the way of him becoming arrogant to the point of "really not nice now".

For me the key is having a strong, believable reason for an alpha acting the way he does, and letting the reader see that beneath it all, he respects the heroine as much as he desires her.

Very much looking forward to reading your next, Jenn! Yours too, Nalini =)

Robbie

misty wright said...

Hey Jen! I love me some alpha males. :) A man to take charge and get it done, even when you want to kill him at times and jump him the rest of the time. Gotta love it. :)

Can't wait to read it!

Dawn Epton said...

I love alpha males, because I love to be the one to bring them to their knees.

Shaneh Woods said...

Welcome to Nalini's blog. She has great taste in books so I am sure to love yours. As for Alpha Male, the ones that turn me one, every which way, are the ones that show a hint of pain. Something in thier life has made them be the strong one, the leader, or even cold but the right woman makes them go weak in the knees. (most of the time it is only the reader and not the heroine that notices when it starts) Look forward to reading your book.

Spankable: Judd definatley.

Jennifer Lewis said...

All these great comments about alpha males are getting my blood pumping (it's early a.m. here in NY--yawn!). Robbie, that's a really good point about him needing a strong, believable reason for acting like a....like an alpha male :) With Naldo it's because he's just inherited the family estate, which for him is like a sacred trust, along with his family honor, and the heroine's presence seems to threaten both of them.

Still, there are definitely times when he could use a good spanking...

Jen

AJ Chase said...

I used to have a lot of trouble with the Alpha male. Being an Alpha female myself I have always seen the appeal of a man who would stand up to me (I've had more than one guy break up with me because they didn't know how to "handle" or "control" me) but I also didn't like the picture of me and some arrogant guy butting heads everyday for thirty years.

But as I read more Presents, it being the line I'm targeting, I see more and more appeal in a man who knows what he wants and isn't afraid to ask for it.

I think Alpha's who are just jerks and cross the line are the handiwork of writers who don't know what the heck they're doing and they think being aggressive and powerful is the same as being an a**hat and they can just be lazy and write them that way.

Jennah said...

Being married to an alpha, I know the good and bad sides intimately, but I loooove an alpha male in books as well. And you're right, it all has to do with whether they can bring home a buffalo. Speaking as an anthropologist, it the whole survival of the species thing.

CrystalG said...

I love alpha males. There is nothing more attractive than a strong, confident take charge guy. You know he is going to be there when you need him.

Casee said...

I'm always looking for new authors to try!!

I love alpha heroes. I'll definitely have to pick this book up. :)

Jennifer Lewis said...

AJ, I'm LOL about your problems with men who can't "handle" and alpha female. Anna in my Seduced for the Inheritance has had that experience in her first marriage, and it's left her with a nasty taste in her mouth.

I find the whole "survival of the species" aspect of romance fascinating. It's eerie how little we've really changed over the milennia. Sometimes I just stop and realize--OMG, all that food in the supermarket in those fancy plastic packages and tins actually grew in the soil or came out of an animal! I think we forget how close we still are to our primitive ancestry sometimes.

I'm glad there are so many alpha male lovers out there!

Jen

Anne-Marie Carroll said...

Hey, Jen.

(that's a really good point about him needing a strong, believable reason for acting like a....like an alpha male :)

This is an awesome point. I love an alpha male who is positive, but knows when to back down, showing a softer side to him - vulnerable when he needs to be. Jen, you do a great job in creating heroes. I want to grow up and write like you.

Maureen said...

Congratulations on your new book! I do like alpha male romance heroes. You can count on them to do whatever has to be done.

Jennifer Lewis said...

Anne-Marie, I love you. The check is in the mail. (Anne-Marie is one of my CP's so she's also read some of my my stories that won't see the light of day....)

Jen

MaryKate said...

Hi Jennifer! Nice to meet you!

I love all alpha males, but my favorite alphas are a specific breed, the "dark and broody alpha." The darker and broodier, the better! Even though in real life, I'd never put up with their nonsense!

I think the appeal for me about alphas is that they tend to be leaders of men, and generally aggressive kinds of guys. But to their women, they have this soft gooey inside. I love the idea that a woman can bring a big man to his knees.

MaryKate said...

Hi Jennifer! Nice to meet you!

I love all alpha males, but my favorite alphas are a specific breed, the "dark and broody alpha." The darker and broodier, the better! Even though in real life, I'd never put up with their nonsense!

I think the appeal for me about alphas is that they tend to be leaders of men, and generally aggressive kinds of guys. But to their women, they have this soft gooey inside. I love the idea that a woman can bring a big man to his knees.

Jennifer Lewis said...

Mary Kate, Those dark and brooding guys can be very enticing. I tiptoed into that territory with my book "Black Sheep Billionaire" that will be out in January, 2008.

I so agree that it's fun to enjoy a reading about hero who you wouldn't necessarily want to tangle with in real life. All the enjoyment, none of the aggro :-)

Jen

Nalini Singh said...

The random numbers have spoken and the winner is: DAWN EPTON

Please email me your address at nalinisinghwrites @ gmail.com (without the spaces).

Congratulations!

blessedheart said...

I love alpha males...their demanding ways, their take-charge attitude, their physical strength and besuty, etc!

Rhonda :-)