There are, I think, lots of things that come together to make a great novel - from characters and location to plot and romance.
The hero of a book plays, for me, a key part in whether I yearn to add a recently read book to my to-be-kept shelves.
So here are my Top Five favourite novel heros.
If you haven't already come across these then I highly recommend you make their acquitance!
Jonah, the pilot hero in Walking On Air by Christina Jones. Why? He's confident, caring, has a good sense of humour and is tall, dark and handsome. Confused, flawed but loveable with it!
Olly, the partner and father of the heroine's child in Summer Daydreams by Carole Matthews. Why? He loves the heroine and just wants them to be a happy little family. When Nell wants more, in the shape of great business ambitions that take her away from him and their daughter, he just wants to do the best he can for her. Another flawed hero but he has a good heart and will do anything to protect Nell.
Jay Tiernan - the succesful businesman in Nadia Knows Best by Jill Mansell. Why? Jay is a real gentleman and has a brilliant sense of humour. He's honest, hard working and gorgeous.
Jake - the ex-con and wrongly slighted hero in Claudia Carroll's A Very Accidental Love Story. He may have done time but it wasn't his fault, as you'll find out as this page-turner of a story unfolds. Why? He's intelligent, handsome, wants to make the best possible future for himself and has a heart of complete gold. Be warned, you'll just want to hug him!
Robert McAndrew - the loveable and confused hero in Hester Browne's Swept Off Her Feet. Why? The next in line to inherit a Scottish Castle, Robert is a self made businessman and doesn't want to be saddled with a costs-a-fortune-to-run castle and it's antiquated contents. Or so he thinks... Robert is capable, good fun, handsome, a great dancer and a delight to be around.
Plus, OK, OK, I know I said five heros but I couldn't resist, here are two extra heros who come very close to my Top Five:
Will Tennant, the succesful businessman, set up an outdoor clothing & gear business in the Lake District. Find him in Phillipa Ashley's Decent Exposure. Why? When he's not doing business deals he's out climbing cliffs and rescuing people as part of his role in the local mountain rescue. Extremely capable, rugged, handsome and caring but extremely confused and complicated too, Will only just missed my favourites list because he's a bit too Alpha Male for my hero tastes!
Jack Thatcher - another local businessman with a good heart. Find him in Nell Dixon's Animal Instincts. He's capable, caring, protective and, of course, totally handsome.